Who Do You Think You Are?
I am a mother of two children.
The birth of these people in to my life and my marriage forever changed how I answer this question.
I was a variety of things (actress, newlywed, couturier, free wheeling) before their arrival.
And I have become many more things (human napkin, angel maker, line cook, laundry mystic) since that time.
This week, Metamorphosis has been on my mind.
I am preparing to teach my Rampant Sisterhood: Engaging Your Authentic Voice Online workshop for the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers.
I have also been in the final week of a 6-week journaling experience with my friend Mandy Steward, of Messy Canvas, and Hilary Rain of Spirit,Soul,Earth. These Sisters, met on Instagram and Face book, have served me a dose of deep introspection along the path of Advent and Christmas and the 12 Holy Nights. I am entering this New Year having scoured my soul by asking some hard questions and noticing the places where my inner life and my outer expression mingle. I am not a weaver, but there must be a term for the territory where one pattern or color merges in to another.
I have been in that territory, in the dark regions of my soul and the colorful interior of my curiosity. Tracing this journey in my art journal has fed me.
And so, I emerge today.
I emerge ready to teach others about locating what is original and magnetic about themselves and how to bring that intricate pattern out in to the world online to construct author or artist or small business platforms. What I do on the interior is what I also do on the exterior. And as in a magnificent tapestry, the place where my inner life touches, mingles, and merges with my outer life intrigues me.
Which may explain a little bit why I have been so quiet here on the Laundry Line.
And why, in the midst of everything else, of my son being home, of the celebrations and gatherings and wintry sojourns to ice skate or hike, I have not posted much.
Metamorphosis is happening.
This morning I read in Mirabai Starr’s book about Saint Teresa of Avila:
“Transformation requires unraveling, and regeneration is predicated on rest. Multiplicity is born of oneness, and the sound of creation issues forth from the primordial silence.”
Today, I want to honor two women who have come in to my life, two more, beyond the treasures of Mandy and Hilary, through my interactions on the Internet.
One is Tania Pryputniewicz, who I met via SheWrites and the group of women writers we are in that focuses on mother writers. Tania lives in California and from across the country, through email, our blogs and real papery mail, we are getting to know each other, our writing, our mothering, our questions and our inspirations.
Tania offered me an amazing blog post for Out of the Mouths of Babes that I have been waiting to publish. Metamorphosis is her topic. Tania’s eloquent blog post energizes the Out of the Mouths of Babes blog series. Her words scatter light across the dark landscape of winter, shooting rays of refracted truths all over our bodies. Tania inhabits her femininity, her mothering and her writing with a fullness borne of paying close, slow attention. Her post will premiere Monday morning, as I am heading to Simon’s Rock to teach.
Where do I get to be fully present? The honest answer is in starts and stops and by listening to my body (most overlooked but most potent nexus) at each virtual and literal location. One website, one interaction at a time. Whether feeling whole, partially present, apprehensive, overjoyed.
I urge you to plan your morning read here on Laundry Line Divine tomorrow.
Speaking of reading, my fourth wonder of the web sister, Lucy Pearce, who I met via… well, we have many overlapping friends, but central to both of our lives is mothering and creativity. Lucy’s book, The Rainbow Way has been in my lap daily since it arrived here a few weeks ago. I look forward to devouring it whole. But what I read this morning urges me forward, as if Lucy is cheering me on.
Not everyone need dedicate themselves to the life of the artist. As a creative mother, unless your children are much older or you can afford full-time childcare, you are unlikely to be able to. But we can all learn to quiet ourselves, to look outside with open hearts and listen inside with curiosity. We can all develop our senses and practice giving expression to our inner experiences. Every single one of us can learn to express what we truly love, what we find beautiful and multiply this in the world.
It is this multiplying….
like the caterpillar, who, in the dark confines of the cocoon, turns to ooze, which turns, remarkably into a butterfly, this metamorphosis of our lives, ordinary and mundane, repetitive and worn scruffy, in to stories, paintings, cakes or doodles, this is where golden alchemy occurs.
And this is what Rampant Sisterhood, sharing that gold out in the world, is all about.
And what Out of the Mouths of Babes does with and for women who are mothers, who explore their creative voices.
And what Laundry Line Divine and all the other ways I work in the world do…. giving voice to the warp and the weft of being a woman or a man in relationship to all that is sacred in our daily lives.
May your week be full of wonder.
Please come back in the morning to meet Tania.
Your wings will tingle in recognition.
All my best,
PS I must share with you Lucy’s words about An Anthology of Babes: 36 Women Give Motherhood a Voice. Yesterday, she sent me this message on Face book:
Suzi, your book arrived yesterday and I have spent every spare moment devouring it, it is SO rich and deep and true, I cried many times, tears of recognition, and many times my heart stood still – I so didn’t want it to end. I was totally inspired by your FeMail project – and very honoured to receive one of your cards… Thank you so much – deep blessings on your work -I am so glad we found each other and do hope to be able to collaborate further in the future. ~Lucy Pearce
PPS Please comment here. I love your words. And do share this post. Thank you for your Rampant Sisterhood.