"I’m on a path, just like you, acknowledging the inner call for awakening and true freedom ~ to touch some magic amidst my mundane world, to uncover the parts of myself I’ve begun to hide. We live at a time with more freedom, choice, and opportunity than ever, but it often comes with the heavy expense of disconnection from ourselves as we direct our lens outward. I have no desire to flee the beautiful mess of my day-to-day or abandon the structure that supports my life. Yet, I do long to expand my experience to include a more attuned version of myself that never forgets to give myself permission to feel for that voice inside. I’m remembering a deeper truth, a more complete story of who I am -- just as much wild animal as sovereign being. I’m honoring the full spectrum of my humanness and, I know, that holding it sacred is the key to my feeling fulfilled." ~Angela
I've spent the last 17 years teaching yoga, meditation, and holistic living. Ten of those years, I was living internationally and traveling the world as a teacher's teacher, educating others on how to facilitate deep experiences of the body and mind. This was a path that gave me access to the depth of my own heart, fortified my belief in the intrinsic goodness of life, and taught me that connection---to myself, to others, and to nature--is the foundation of a living well. This path allowed me to live my ultimate dream of service, adventure, and personal freedom. For many years, it was a source of true fulfillment and all I could have ever wanted.
The coming of my son Damian and my transition to motherhood when I was 34-years-old changed the way I wanted to show up in the world. Something fundamental shifted in me with his arrival. I felt birthed into a new way of being, and with it, I somehow reconciled the spiritual longing that had fueled my practice and, therefore, teaching. I felt myself grounded and earthy in a new way ~ assured and rooted in a primal feminine essence where I wanted nothing other than to caregive my child. It was a precious pocket of time, where I felt strengthened by the discovery of my immense power to create life and the unshakeable foundation of a mother's love.
.It broke me open to a heaven on earth, right where I sat, when I no longer looked to the stars in the sky or the sages of the past for answers.
Just me, a woman. Wildly human, divinely inspired, perfectly content.
I will, forever, look at those early days as a new mother with reverence--they were, without question, the most sacred of my life. I feel the privilege of every sacrifice I made and would do it all again, undoubtedly. However, what I didn't realize then, was that this deep instinctual drive to nurture and protect my child, was also something that had the capacity to destroy me. Despite two decades of showing up to my yoga mat daily and teaching others about the the necessity of self-care, I became a woman who was an afterthought in her own life. I hit the ground running at dawn each day, with not enough nourishment or sleep, poised and ready to tackle a to-do list and go full-speed until my little one was tucked in sweetly. I had completely lost my balance.
For the longest time, I just got on with the business of busy-ness, like so many women do. I ran my wellness business full time and, having maneuvered through a messy separation that left me a single mother before my son's first birthday, I had no breaks. In truth, years flew by this way, without me ever noticing the ways I was so lost in caregiving that I’d stopped receiving and was giving from an empty well. I hadn’t made space to see how putting myself last, over and over, halted everything in my life from passionate love and healthy friendships to a reliable income stream. I didn't pay attention until I was on the verge of a mind-body breakdown. It was only when I hit the peak of my exhaustion----I was irritable, anxious, foggy, gaining weight, lethargic, and nursing several injuries-- that life forced me to stop "doing".
When I got quiet, I heard a voice wanting for my attention. I would close my eyes and here these questions....
“How do I maintain my OWN sense of well-being, as well as properly take care of my son?” “How do I stay ahead of this ‘burnout’ curve and remain healthy so I can bring my best self to the table for the people I love?" "How do I show up as a fierce mother, but also a sensual women with a thirst for life, a creative spark, and an appreciation for living unleashed?" "Will I ever find a way to honor my refined sensibilities, as well as my wild ways?" "Does balance actually exist for a woman like me, under these particular circumstances?"
My creative feminine -- that yin principle in all of us that receives, flows, feels, intuits, loves, connects and creates--was burning out. My inner masculine --the yang principle that produces, gos, thinks, organizes, achieves, and plans was in overdrive. I was being called back to the wild places within myself where I could “rewild” and re-activate my senses . I had a deep soul longing to play with the young country girl I had been in my childhood--the one with nobody's timeline but her own, who lied in the grass, staring at clouds by day and stars by night. I wanted my bare feet on the earth and the space to get dirty. I yearned to create things of enduring beauty my hands and move my body freely. I craved spaciousness in all areas of my life.
They say the creative feminine will begin to rise in times of transition, when we are shedding skin and a beginning anew...and I felt her stirring.
I realized, then, that my health depended upon restoring this balance. I recommitted to meeting my feminine self and my own desires each day, so I could relate to my world feeling connected and fulfilled. Even though it first came with reluctance, in tiny windows (because I felt I had no time), I prioritized feminine qualities such as rest, rejuvenation, and slowing down. I made time for making art, sensual pleasure, meandering in nature, napping in a hammock, exercising my body, enjoying lazy mornings in a park, and blocking out afternoons for good friends and deep conversation. And what I discovered was, not only did I feel nourished for the first time in years, but that it made me more productive.
What I've learned by sharing my own story, is that I'm not the only woman navigating this path of balance. Most women believe there is simply not enough time or space to acknowledge their longing to live with more passion, creativity, sensuality. It doesn't much matter if it's a child you're raising, a family member you're care-taking, a relationship you're nurturing, a business your building, or a dream your fighting for…many of you are looking for the parts of yourself you've lost along the way, in an fast-paced modern word that keeps us stuck in a masculine, on-the-move paradigm.
I want to be a voice of acknowledgement for women and a reminder to take the slower, more scenic, route through life. My hope is that my work serves as a portal, and I as a friend to hold to door open, to that wild, feminine, creative life force that flows through all of us.
Have fun poking around my world.