Wild was my guiding word for this year, and for most of this year honestly I’ve wondered if I could’ve chosen an less appropriate word. It feels like my most domesticated year to date.
I have traveled less, worked less and spent more time in the same four walls than I thought possible (and lovingly so.)
Navigating co-habitation and relationship and business transition has not been easy though.
Yes, my life from the outside looks much more like our society says it’s best to; I live in great comfort and I know a lot of people that love me have breathed a sigh of relief ‘to see me happy’ .
(Which is quite a strange and loaded statement for me to hear really as I look back on the last 3 years of my life especially as some of the happiest and most successful to date.)
But back to wild, and it has me wondering, how I associate this word with freedom, and creativity and on focusing on my own needs and my own inner animal nature.
I have to say that it most definitely was easier as a single woman running her own business living on her own to navigate and prioritise my own needs.
Truthfully it wasn’t even in question.
But for most women the second that someone else’s needs come into the mix it becomes problematic, now problematic is my word, you might have a descriptor that is softer and less… problematic.
But that is how it feels to me and so it’s been a time of navigating the extremes of my nature, my ‘and and’ desire to be both sides of the coin at once.
My desire to be at home running a bath at the same time as my passport and my suitcase are packed and ready, eyes on the horizon.
My inner animal, the wild space I retreat to internally has been most affected by my evolving circumstances and it’s in this internal space that I am returning to most often lately to make my decisions forward.
Because she is the one that left unattended has the power to wreak the most havoc.
Her wild wisdom accessed and integrated is sublime.
Think synchronicity, manifesting, good health, sensuality and boundaries.
Ignore her intuition, deny her space, tell her to be less dramatic and more palatable and she will bring your world to it’s knees and burn everything to the ground.
And no I am not being overly dramatic here.
Every woman (and perhaps some men) reading this who have navigated divorce, illness, or the kind of bewildering unexpected life change that revealed great chasms in their inner world of beliefs, values and habits knows exactly what I am referring to.
So whilst my personal life path isn’t really that unorthodox, even my simple life, childless by choice and for many years single would have a few hundred years ago seen me burnt at the stake.
As such I have long accepted my path forward is one I will need to create myself with the intention of modeling these options to the women coming up behind me.
It is not the actual choices I have made themselves that other women should copy, not at all, but the reality that there are other ways to live your feminine life.
There are almost always other choices that aren’t on the menu you were given.
You just have to be wild enough to request them and be stubborn enough to stand your ground and know your value of them.
So perhaps this year of wild is more about uncovering the ways in which I need to nourish my inner wild landscape and clear out what get’s in the way.
That perhaps as I enter the start of another cycle of seven I have been choosing my co-ordinates carefully, and as I have listened, my wild animal has shared with me three things I need to do to support her and I think they might help you too.
1.Claim your rite to age in your own wild crafted, free range way.
At 43 when the collective would have me clutching at my ovaries fist flailing at the sky spending so much of my precious time energy and resources on grasping at plump youthful ness I’m taking my middle finger directive and letting it guide me. I have nothing against looking my best, taking my supplements, aligning a few down dogs and soaking in the premium lotions my privileged lifestyle affords. But I want to be part of a culture where aging is more than just ‘looking good for my age’ or appearing youthful because these things acknowledge beauty in spite of aging, not as a result of the lived experience now visible on the outside. One of the most radical things I believe I (and we) can do is to visibly age and stay in touch with my sensuality, intellect and power on my own terms.
2. Create your own map for relating.
I choose to create a unique and constantly evolving model of being in relationship. (There are no cookie cutters in our house)
I am fortunate to enjoy friendships spanning many age brackets and I see a lot of gorgeous Gen Y’s navigating the nuclear family in ways that blow my mind. But for many and most of my generation we need to rethink what we have been told is the only way. We need to be open to creating loving relationships that are created from the inside out, from the needs of the people in them and not from the desire to fit into a model that no longer works for most of us.
3. Most importantly we need to take space.
To take UP space and to have space. This is the one that I think undoes us the most, and certainly I find the most challenging.
Taking a month last year to go on retreat in Bali has given me a visceral embodied experience that goes beyond the simple sum of the parts of rest, food and yoga.
It’s changed the way I give myself permission to claim what I need. It’s helped me apologise less and speak out more boldly to hold space for my clients.
This space though will be different for each of us, and taking time and giving yourself permission to discover what you might need is the first step. This is something I lovingly guide women through in my coaching programs.
Women are hungering for the way showers the gate keepers (and the accidental first responders that I often feel like I am,) to model the change I believe is the way forward.
We’re going to get some of this wrong.
We’re going to look around for someone to show us the way and realise that right now we might be it.
So please feel me when I say
Wild Woman follow your soul path.
The one less paved,
The one strewn with flowers and fallen branches
Across pebbled beaches And spacious internal fire.