The Wise Woman. And stoking her fire.

This post is in response to Charity (who guest-wrote this post) and her comment on my previous post

Oh, lovely, I’m sorry you are in so much pain. I remember being there, it hurt so much. I am lighting a candle for you and stroking your hair.
I am also adding a little reminder (to something you may have forgotten so long ago, it might seem like news):
You have the answers inside you, even when it doesn’t feel that way. Praying and opening up to your inner wise woman helps.

What wise woman? What if I don’t have one?

Oh, but you do. We ALL  do. Yes, even you.
There is no way in hell you are the one woman on earth who doesn’t.
Nobody is that special. Thank God.

And no, I’m not just saying this to help you feel better now, and yes, I m going to tell you how to find her and make friends with her.

Here’s what you do: invite and invent her.
Ask yourself, what qualities does she possess?
Courage? resiliency? Endless love? Humility? Patience?
The magic is that whatever qualities you are attracted to, are ones that you already own. Otherwise they wouldn’t be attractive to you. It’s just how it works. It’s just that right now, you don’t yet have the habit and practice to access them easily. So when you are in pain, choose one of those qualities. And imagine lighting a fire for it. It could be a candle, a burner, a kettle, the image that is most attractive to you is just the right one.
In your mind’s eye,  invite this power to shine. Breath into it, imagining every breath fanning the fire.
Your breath is enough, even if it is frightened and shallow.  The fire is growing all the time, so there is no need to blow too hard, just invite it, give it intention and attention, that’s all you have to do. Allow yourself to take credit for choosing trust and hope over despair.

Now that you accessed some of your power (yours and hers), try talking to the wise woman. Ask her questions.

Ask her: what is your name*?
It may not come up right away. This is perfectly alright.

Ask her: who are you like?
See if the traits of someone you admire show up, but don’t be confused that just because she reminds you of somebody else, (your grandmother, your third grade teacher, or Eleanor Roosevelt, for that matter), don’t think for a minute she is not a part of you. She is as integral to you as your appendix, and nobody can cut her out. You can get to know her and enjoy her, or she can lay dormant inside you, but she is never going away.

Ask:  if I knew what to do next, what would I do?
Stay with this question a little bit. There is no need to force it. Just invite it and make room for the answer to show up: in a dream, or in the shower, or while chopping potatoes for dinner.  Or it might show up when you are curled like a ball in the fetal position under the covers, because the PPDeamons and the guilt they are throwing at you rob you of the energy to get out of bed (I’ve been there, it hurt like hell, and I survived it. I’m not that special. You can too. You will.)

And by the way, Charity, if you need to go to the hospital, there is no shame in that.  I’ve been hospitalized twice, both were important for my recovery.

Sending you hope and love, buckets of them. And permission to cry, permission to feel sorry for yourself when you need to, and loads of encouragement. You are going through the re-birth of yourself. It is painful, but the reward is a new life.

Hugs across the miles.

Yael.


*Purple Star:

My wise woman is Knowellia. She told me her name when I was trying to fall asleep. I couldn’t sleep, COULDN”T Sleep, couldnsleep… I was finally drifting off, and then she whispered. “I am Knowellia, and so are you”.

(I still get goosebumps.)
I didn’t have to write down her name lest I forget it.
I slept soundly for the rest of that night.

Her name is fascinating, I know a wise woman named Noelia. She is one of the managers at Jillians Drawers, probably my favorite store on earth, and the location of my Ithaca support groups and the UnGuilt Trip class.  I was thrilled to discover that my inner wise woman’s name sounds like my friend’s name, but has its own special spelling which makes it mean: “knowing my God” literally. In Hebrew Elli =my God,  Yah=God.

Strange, and fitting. Because my family is on an interesting journey of discovering our own way of being Jewish. My husband and I were both secular Israelis living in the US, and we joined a conservative temple in Ithaca, so we can give our kids some Jewish context far away from the Israeli culture. And then OMG, my husband discovered God!
This was about three years ago, and a bit shocking to me. After I overcame my (huge!) initial resistance, I finally admitted it was a good thing for our family. My husband was going to services regularly, and I joined the temple community for social and cultural reasons. I had no intention to fall in love with the people there. Temple Beth El in Ithaca  has become not only a spiritual home, it is also an extended family. Three years later, I am still not “properly religious” (whatever that might mean), but I am becoming more aware of the existence of higher power in my life. I mean, seriously, just listening to my life’s story makes it clear that something larger is watching over me.  And now that  Knowellia made herself known, I’m open now to deepening my connection with that higher power. And yes, even to calling that power God.

6 Responses to The Wise Woman. And stoking her fire.
  1. zikzuk
    May 6, 2011 | 10:35 pm

    zikzuk is my wiseman name
    touched by the way u do it

  2. mammacockatoo
    May 6, 2011 | 8:21 am

    Yael, very thoughtful post and some great things to think about and explore. Thank you for writing and sharing it.

    Charity, as the others have already said, hang on, hang in there. We’re here with you, and we’ll help however we can.

  3. MamaRobinJ
    May 5, 2011 | 3:17 pm

    Such a powerful post! I love the idea of choosing a quality – I could see myself doing that and lighting a candle and trying to focus on it.

    I wonder what my wise woman’s name is…

    Charity – we’re with you. Hold on.
    MamaRobinJ recently posted..I Know- Right Now You Can’t Tell

    • Yael
      May 5, 2011 | 8:46 pm

      oh, yes! Light that candle. And let me know what qualities you are stoking the fire for.
      And when you find your inner wise woman’s name, would you share it with me?
      Thank you for everything.

  4. Ozcanbyrnes
    May 5, 2011 | 2:08 pm

    Love. Such a wonderful reminder: if I knew what to do next, what would it be? I’ve used that before and it did help. Over the years iv’e forgotten it. I hope it really helps Charity. And above all, if nothing else helps it should help to know all us ppd mamas are here to listen and give support when she needs it most.

    Hang in there Charity. It may not be better today or to tomorrow or even next year. But it will be better- you already know you have good days. There are many more of those to come even if it doesn’t feel like it now.

    • Yael
      May 5, 2011 | 8:43 pm

      So glad you find this useful!
      If I knew what to do next , what would I do is such a powerful way to find our inner compass, isn’t it?
      and thank you for the added kind words for Charity.
      hugs.

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The Wise Woman. And stoking her fire.

This post is in response to Charity (who guest-wrote this post) and her comment on my previous post

Oh, lovely, I’m sorry you are in so much pain. I remember being there, it hurt so much. I am lighting a candle for you and stroking your hair.
I am also adding a little reminder (to something you may have forgotten so long ago, it might seem like news):
You have the answers inside you, even when it doesn’t feel that way. Praying and opening up to your inner wise woman helps.

What wise woman? What if I don’t have one?

Oh, but you do. We ALL  do. Yes, even you.
There is no way in hell you are the one woman on earth who doesn’t.
Nobody is that special. Thank God.

And no, I’m not just saying this to help you feel better now, and yes, I m going to tell you how to find her and make friends with her.

Here’s what you do: invite and invent her.
Ask yourself, what qualities does she possess?
Courage? resiliency? Endless love? Humility? Patience?
The magic is that whatever qualities you are attracted to, are ones that you already own. Otherwise they wouldn’t be attractive to you. It’s just how it works. It’s just that right now, you don’t yet have the habit and practice to access them easily. So when you are in pain, choose one of those qualities. And imagine lighting a fire for it. It could be a candle, a burner, a kettle, the image that is most attractive to you is just the right one.
In your mind’s eye,  invite this power to shine. Breath into it, imagining every breath fanning the fire.
Your breath is enough, even if it is frightened and shallow.  The fire is growing all the time, so there is no need to blow too hard, just invite it, give it intention and attention, that’s all you have to do. Allow yourself to take credit for choosing trust and hope over despair.

Now that you accessed some of your power (yours and hers), try talking to the wise woman. Ask her questions.

Ask her: what is your name*?
It may not come up right away. This is perfectly alright.

Ask her: who are you like?
See if the traits of someone you admire show up, but don’t be confused that just because she reminds you of somebody else, (your grandmother, your third grade teacher, or Eleanor Roosevelt, for that matter), don’t think for a minute she is not a part of you. She is as integral to you as your appendix, and nobody can cut her out. You can get to know her and enjoy her, or she can lay dormant inside you, but she is never going away.

Ask:  if I knew what to do next, what would I do?
Stay with this question a little bit. There is no need to force it. Just invite it and make room for the answer to show up: in a dream, or in the shower, or while chopping potatoes for dinner.  Or it might show up when you are curled like a ball in the fetal position under the covers, because the PPDeamons and the guilt they are throwing at you rob you of the energy to get out of bed (I’ve been there, it hurt like hell, and I survived it. I’m not that special. You can too. You will.)

And by the way, Charity, if you need to go to the hospital, there is no shame in that.  I’ve been hospitalized twice, both were important for my recovery.

Sending you hope and love, buckets of them. And permission to cry, permission to feel sorry for yourself when you need to, and loads of encouragement. You are going through the re-birth of yourself. It is painful, but the reward is a new life.

Hugs across the miles.

Yael.


*Purple Star:

My wise woman is Knowellia. She told me her name when I was trying to fall asleep. I couldn’t sleep, COULDN”T Sleep, couldnsleep… I was finally drifting off, and then she whispered. “I am Knowellia, and so are you”.

(I still get goosebumps.)
I didn’t have to write down her name lest I forget it.
I slept soundly for the rest of that night.

Her name is fascinating, I know a wise woman named Noelia. She is one of the managers at Jillians Drawers, probably my favorite store on earth, and the location of my Ithaca support groups and the UnGuilt Trip class.  I was thrilled to discover that my inner wise woman’s name sounds like my friend’s name, but has its own special spelling which makes it mean: “knowing my God” literally. In Hebrew Elli =my God,  Yah=God.

Strange, and fitting. Because my family is on an interesting journey of discovering our own way of being Jewish. My husband and I were both secular Israelis living in the US, and we joined a conservative temple in Ithaca, so we can give our kids some Jewish context far away from the Israeli culture. And then OMG, my husband discovered God!
This was about three years ago, and a bit shocking to me. After I overcame my (huge!) initial resistance, I finally admitted it was a good thing for our family. My husband was going to services regularly, and I joined the temple community for social and cultural reasons. I had no intention to fall in love with the people there. Temple Beth El in Ithaca  has become not only a spiritual home, it is also an extended family. Three years later, I am still not “properly religious” (whatever that might mean), but I am becoming more aware of the existence of higher power in my life. I mean, seriously, just listening to my life’s story makes it clear that something larger is watching over me.  And now that  Knowellia made herself known, I’m open now to deepening my connection with that higher power. And yes, even to calling that power God.

6 Responses to The Wise Woman. And stoking her fire.
  1. zikzuk
    May 6, 2011 | 10:35 pm

    zikzuk is my wiseman name
    touched by the way u do it

  2. mammacockatoo
    May 6, 2011 | 8:21 am

    Yael, very thoughtful post and some great things to think about and explore. Thank you for writing and sharing it.

    Charity, as the others have already said, hang on, hang in there. We’re here with you, and we’ll help however we can.

  3. MamaRobinJ
    May 5, 2011 | 3:17 pm

    Such a powerful post! I love the idea of choosing a quality – I could see myself doing that and lighting a candle and trying to focus on it.

    I wonder what my wise woman’s name is…

    Charity – we’re with you. Hold on.
    MamaRobinJ recently posted..I Know- Right Now You Can’t Tell

    • Yael
      May 5, 2011 | 8:46 pm

      oh, yes! Light that candle. And let me know what qualities you are stoking the fire for.
      And when you find your inner wise woman’s name, would you share it with me?
      Thank you for everything.

  4. Ozcanbyrnes
    May 5, 2011 | 2:08 pm

    Love. Such a wonderful reminder: if I knew what to do next, what would it be? I’ve used that before and it did help. Over the years iv’e forgotten it. I hope it really helps Charity. And above all, if nothing else helps it should help to know all us ppd mamas are here to listen and give support when she needs it most.

    Hang in there Charity. It may not be better today or to tomorrow or even next year. But it will be better- you already know you have good days. There are many more of those to come even if it doesn’t feel like it now.

    • Yael
      May 5, 2011 | 8:43 pm

      So glad you find this useful!
      If I knew what to do next , what would I do is such a powerful way to find our inner compass, isn’t it?
      and thank you for the added kind words for Charity.
      hugs.

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