In every birth is a death, every death a birth. Every yes a no, and every no, a yes. The path of mothering is such a deep expression of this. Baby born. Placenta Dies. Mother born, maiden dies. Maiden always lives within her, but a piece of her innocence dies in the process of birthing. Mother says yes to herself, sometimes is a no to her child. And yes to her child, is often no to herself. Every time we bleed, is the death of the possibilty of a new life, and a yes to the next cycle of possibility.
I consider this in the balancing of the Divine Feminine within herself, given the tidal rhythms we experience as wombyn in our bodies every month. All wombyn are divine reflections of the cycles in nature. In the lore of the Red Tent, wombyn are meant to bleed together with the new moon, in their red tent, and there is biological evidence that some of this this actual happens.
Regardless of when we bleed, and regardless of whether or not we are conscious of this, we are all riding the waves of the moon and the tides in our cycles, even if we are no longer menstruating wombyn. As we ride the tides of these perfectly imperfect cycles, we often feel the tides deeply in our bodies, physical and emotional.We feel it all. It is easy to take it personally and create stories to validate our emotional expressions, but I believe wombyn become much empathic with universal suffering as they bleed and their bodies shed the possibility of creating life one more time.
I have recently given myself permission to feel the depths of these tides in my being. It is LIBERATING! I think so many of us feel so emotional just before and at the beginning of each moontime and that our culture pathologizes this phenomenon. The real issue is that, wombyn need quiet, insular time in that window, but our culture does not make space for this. On some level, I think the actual “pathologies” of the wombyn I see in practice are partially an expression of that deep resistance and frustration with not getting that time. In response, our bodies and psyches create health paradigms that force them to slow down.
This cycle, I went into the big feelings that moved with my tides and allowed myself to grieve deeply some aspects of mothering and childhood as my little one turned two. When I say, “grieve deeply”, I MEAN it! I remember reading in Women Who Run With the Wolves by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes about how the Italian women in sob and wail at funerals. In our culture, we sit quietly and hold back the tears, sniffling and not looking at each other.
We each have our own stories that we weave into our grief experiences. I know one of mine is the loss of innocence I witness my toddler experience, as he grows and evolves. I honor all of them, and also witness this phenomenon as the Great Cosmic Grief.
I wonder what it would be like, if we grieved openly like the Italian women, or even by ourselves, but with that much gusto?
I notice that when I am premenstrual, I often have one night when I cannot sleep at all. I recently realized that if I stop trying on that night and get up and do something creative or movement based, I feel energized. I think my body craves the dark quiet time. I notice if I stay in bed feeling frustrated about being awake, I feel exhausted the next day, but if I get up and do some of what I am about to suggest, the next day I feel slightly tired, slightly energized and slightly as though I am walking between the worlds of dreamtime and reality.
My parting thought for the moment, is to share my recipe for premenstrual insomnia:
Choose 3 of these activities for each cycle
- Sun Salutations or restorative yoga practice
- Self Care Abdominal Massage*
- Self Care Yoni Massage*
*Contact me if you are interested in learning more about how to weaves these two practices into your lives.