Filling Your Cup Mama’s Night In at Wide Sky Days
Remember the Wide Sky Days conference I mentioned last week? One thing I didn’t elaborate on was that the conference – although deeply needed for personal reasons wasn’t even on our radar to attend until Flo, the event organizer, invited me to hold a circle, a Mama’s Night In.
We actually connected back in January over the phone to talk about what she really wanted to offer the mama’s at the conference. By the end of the 45 minutes conversation we had shared laughs and goosebumps and excitement over what was developing.
I’ve come to find over the past year how much these circles mean to me.
Online circles like the forum and the circles we hold over the phone within the Organic Tribe, and – more and more – these in-person, intimate circles between women.
I can feel my heart leading me towards more of these, and growing them into something more.
This one in particular was really wonderful.
The topic was Filling Your Cup: As mamas we are working hard to fill the cups of our children. What stops us, or enables us, in filling our own cups?
I’m always a little nervous going in. I talk about deep things, things that don’t resonate with everyone, or that take people by surprise at times. And although I want to meet the needs of everyone, I know that’s impossible. So my thoughts were on the needs of this group, and my desire to authentically speak my Truth while meeting the needs I am called to meet.
It’s so much easier here in this little online space. Those of you wonderful sistahs who read and email and connect on Facebook are here because we already “know” each other, in a sense. We have the common hunger for depth and connection – to ourselves and other women.
But an hour before my circle at Wide Sky I really had the opportunity to DIG IN to the thoughts and emotions that were coming up, my desire to connect, my fear of looking like a wackadoodle. Cuz you know, when we stick our heads outside our bubbles, we do realize just how crazy things like mindfulness and empathy are in this world.
But I realized two things as I was Digging Deep:
- I’m not out of my bubble in this group of incredible families. It is safe to love and approve of myself.
- I’m not out of my bubble so long as I’m leaning into authenticity and speaking from the heart. Again, it’s safe to love and approve of myself.
There’s such a sense of danger or fear (often in the form of self-doubt or nerves or “not good enough-ness”) when we put ourselves “out there”, when we open our hearts and our voices.
It’s vulnerability, in a world that tries to tell us we’re not safe.
We fear the judgment or backlash or rejection that feels like isolation to us.
But we are safe. Even in the most dangerous of situations, we are ultimately going to be okay. (I was texting with a sistah this morning whose body was reflecting a challenge she was facing and I sent her several reminders to work with, one being “Only good comes from each experience.” Such a powerful experience to work with that one!)
This circle at Wide Sky was more than okay. More than good.
There were hearts poured out, and tears to match, and things to stretch us – myself included. I learned where I hold back my Trust and where I can lean deeper into it. I learned to take a deep breath and fall into that undercurrent again, the sense of ease, the words that want to come forward (even when the voice in the back of my head tells me to shut up), and the fact that it is always perfect, always exactly what it needs to be (even when it can’t meet everyone’s needs), and how I can still build upon it to make it more wonderful.
I had more women than I could count coming up to me after, long hugs and deeply felt thank you’s, gratitude given and received between us. Even Tiffani’s blog post about the circle moved me beyond words – something I’ve been rendered a lot lately by so many of you.
Since then I’ve had emails from women in the circle and other women as well, sending me love and appreciation for something I did or said that touched them at just the right time, in just the right way. Emails from women emboldened to leave a painful relationship, from women who have learned to love themselves, from women who spoke the truth or finally felt at peace with just knowing it for themselves.
And all of this makes my heart swell.
I love what I get to do. But sending love notes or blog posts out to people I don’t always hear back from means often not seeing the ripples of what I do. Even working with groups in the Tribe or e-course isn’t the same as hearing it personally, holding a women’s hand as she tells you her story, shedding tears together or rubbing the goosebumps on each other’s arms.
I feel overwhelmed by love and Life and the work I get to do, the ripples I get to send, and the ripples I get to receive.
I feel at peace and reverence.
My deepest needs for connection and magic and meaning and laughter and Trust are being met when I get to see – really see – the work I – we – get to do…as women, and with women.
This is what I’m made for. And it stretches me in the very best of ways. And it’s what I get to do every day. How can it get any better?
(Even as I ask that I can hear the answer I started hearing almost two years ago…yes, Life. I hear you. Facilitating retreats are in my future. And I’m almost ready.)