Monday, May 31, 2010

The worth of a woman's work

"Consider a woman in Somalia who rises early to walk two miles to the nearest well to get water for her family, rturns to feed her children and ready them for school, spends the morning working the soil of the family garden, the afternoon tending to the sick and infirm of her village, then in the event cooks and mends clothing and sings songs to her tired children and makes love with her husband. As measurd by the G.D.P. this woman has no value. She is useless; a drain on the nation's wealth."

What is the true measure of the wealth of a nation? It's a good question, posed by the author of Sabbath, Wayne Muller.

When we create art, when we create beauty in our surroundings, when we experience joy and good health, when we measure our lives not only by the money we earn for 'producing' but for the presence of love, beauty, health and harmony around us, it is perhaps not measurable on any economic index.

Or is it?

We are learning to value clean water and healthy fish stocks, after the mess of the BP Oil Spill. We are putting a monetary value on the education of girls in Africa. We can also learn to value our time for just being, for tuning into our inner peace, for experiencing good health mentally and emotionally as well as physically.

Know that the effort towards valuing our work in creating a peaceful environment for our families begins with each one of us. I begin by placing value on my work as a woman working in the home.

I place value on the work I do of writing poems and inspiring blogs.
I value my contribution to the human race as a singer and entertainer.

I may be a semi-professional at a lot of things, meaning I don't get paid much for it, if anything, but  my worth as a woman is priceless.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Enjoying the Rest

Remember that wonderful man I mentioned I had shared a life with? well it was 26 years on May 19. We are headed off downtown, sans enfants, to have supper and stay in a fancy schmancy hotel in Old Montreal, get a massage first, and relax....and celebrate those 26 years, (which we take 5 at a time).

C'est le weekend! as they say in Montreal. And a three-day one in Canada.

Sigh....looking at my back yard and the lake, there are 2 deck chairs sitting on the dock, just waiting for two bodies to sit down in them.

Tomorrow I have a singing engagement in Vankleek Hill at 9:30 in the morning.....with the chorus, so better not to stay up too late over that romantic dinner.  Then after singing, home to watch the Hockey Game (we won last night, oh my god!) and perhaps sit under the stars on that dock.

enjoy this lovely period of recreation and rest,

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Follow your bliss

Just found a box of candles I had ordered from zena moon and the one scented with strawberry says, Follow your Bliss.

I love that quote from Joseph Campbell, and the meaning behind it - do what you love and the money will follow.  It means taking risks, or feeling your way out of the comfort zone, often, stretching yourself into a new space, using your imagination.

But think how your life would be without it? Once I got some help in visualizing this from a counsellor. She had me imagine myself leading retreats, the faces on the women after finishing a restful creative retreat, the thanks they gave me, the way I felt. Then she had me imagine down the road a ways, perhaps a book tour, or a publicity tour of some kind, opening up the country, then the continent, perhaps the world to my retreats.

At the end of five minutes of visualization, I felt energized, alive, happy, fulfilled.

Then she had me imagine the opposite: if I stayed where I was, doing what I was, hiding my light, not sharing it with the world, cooped up in my little room, in a funk of mild depression.  What did it feel like in my body? my shoulders sagged, and my head drooped. Five years down the road, I was more anxious, withdrawn, depressed, and my health was deteriorating.  I had no energy, no vitality.  I surprised myself in seeing my mother's body in this future.  That's how she looks now.  A person who so gave herself to what was expected of her, that she lost herself somewhere along the way. I could see myself ending up bitter, tired, unwell, battling fatigue and depression.

Back to that candle - the sticker's on zena moon candles always have great quotes. This one says,
"Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it., Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."  Friedrich Nietzche.

Wow! I want to feel alive, that's what I want.

happy May, spring of all possibilities

Monday, May 03, 2010

Gentling the Woman's Soul

Listening to a wonderful CD this morning, by Karen Drucker, A Retreat of my Own.

Monday mornings are retreat time for me. I like to light a candle, (don't turn the computer on or read emails till afterwards), play soothing music, and treat myself tenderly.

Yoga stretches, pigeon pose for my hips, downward dog for my hamstrings, shoulder rolls, whatever can move me into my body and into receptive mode.

Then I worked on my retreat schedule for the New Moon retreat upcoming.

Oddly enough, at my chiro/naturopath appointment later that morning, the subject of Receiving came up.  She was getting that I had some energetic blockages around being kind to myself, taking care of me. And we cleared some old baggage (stored in the body since a very early age, and reinforced with time as a belief system).  I won't go into the details, but suffice it to say, I had no conscious awareness that these issues were still so strong in me.  Since I lead retreats and blog about self-care, I assumed I knew how to take care of myself.  I eat well, I live well, and I even allow myself a massage once or twice a year (hah!).

Anyway, the upshot of my morning, is that I am now willing to receive. I am ready to make room for myself in the busy schedule,  and I am willing to be taken care of. There, I said it.  Not so hard really, but words alone are not enough.

I welcome you all to consider how you can be more gentle with yourself today, strive less, push yourself less, make room for the heart and breath, and really allow the beauty you are to be what you love.

Baby steps.....

ps check out the link below

Good News from Imagine a Woman International: May 3, 2010

This year the Imagine a Woman poem is celebrating its 15th year anniversary with a new website and new programs and opportunities for personal growth and professional enhancement. You're invited to the launch of the IAW WomanSpirit Empowerment Program, today May 3, with free inspirational gifts and complimentary coaching at We'll be celebrating WomanSpirit all week so get your party clothes on, invite your friends, and come on over.