Self Love, Uncategorized

How I Stopped Failing at Femininity

Bailey 2cropI used to be shackled by distorted notions of the meaning of my vagina.

I thought it required I be docile, unconditionally pleasant, agreeable, subservient, visually appealing and shiny—but not too shiny—I wouldn’t want too much attention.

I didn’t know how to do any of that. I thought I was failing at femininity. But really, I was failing to grasp what true femininity was.

These were private fears. A secret shame in my feminine nature. My mother was, and is, a feminist who kept her last name when she married my father, worked passionately for Planned Parenthood and refused to be shoved into a box of archaic social expectations.

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Self Love, Uncategorized

Please, Remind Me to Cry

I crave my tears.

I want to taste their cathartic salty elixir in my mouth.

I want to swallow my sorrow.

The smiling is making me ache with repression.

I need to release the fear. The doubts. The screaming insecurities.

I need to feel them sliding out of my soul.

Please don’t enclose me in your soothing embrace.

I don’t want to be soothed.

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Uncategorized

10% of Each Course Sale Now Donated to #EveryMotherCounts

Every-Mother-Counts-logo

Hear ye hear ye!

10% of each sale of the online childbirth course is now being donated to the non-profit organization Every Mother Counts– dedicated to lowering global rates of infant and maternal mortality by making pregnancy and childbirth safer for every mother.

Self Love

Quieting the Voice of Worry

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It seems our minds have developed an unfortunate dependency on worry. In the blips of time when “everything is under control,” the mind kicks into overdrive, determined to find a problem to latch onto, a problem to worry about.

Then, the pellets of doubt begin to drop and we are eventually drowned in an all-consuming flood of ‘what-ifs?’

It’s frightening how easy it is for me to put a negative spin on the positive. My brain has a lifetime of wiring supporting the perpetuation of worry.

What gives? Why the ceaseless pounding of doubt and fear?

As a Hypnotherapist, and chronic worrier, I’ve discovered a common root to this conundrum- the inner critic, the voice of incessant chatter that feeds off of problems, real or perceived.

I call my voice Sheila, and she is quite unpleasant.

After years of allowing her volume to grow to a nauseating magnitude, and witnessing the same phenomenon in clients, I decided that something had to give. There were voices that needed to be silenced, or at least significantly minimized.

The following release work has supported myself, and many others, in turning the voices of our motley inner crew down from 10 to ‘Shh…’

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  1. Mindful Breathing– The rhythmic patter of steady breath offers a productive replacement to the, “No you can’t, not good enough, what if, I think you’re wrong, just give up.”

It’s difficult to live in a state of chaos when our body is checking into its healing room, via breath work.

Try it- take five deep breaths, inhaling to a slow count of 5, holding for 3, and exhaling to a slow count of 5.

Allow the body to sink deeper into the inner healing room with each breath.

  1. Tapping- We have an electrical system running through our body via channels called meridians. When we have a negative thought our electrical system is disrupted.

Each of the meridians has an end point, and we can release the negative energy by tapping on these points. While tapping, we verbally state the negative followed by our positive preference.

For example, “Even though I am sad my boyfriend broke up with me, I know I am wonderful and worthy of love.”

While repeating the statement, tap 5-7 times in the following locations:

  1. In between the eyebrows.
  2. On the temples.
  3. Underneath the eyes.
  4. On the upper lip.
  5. Below the lower lip.
  6. On the collarbone.

Repeat this round three times.

  1. Write out the worry and rip it up- It is profoundly cathartic to physically destroy a piece of negativity.

Write down your worry, regret, fear, anger, or other variety of negativity on a scrap of paper and rip it up into minuscule shreds, or burn it- I prefer the later.

  1. Self Hypnosis– There are vibrant worlds of possibility waiting to be sparked in the mind, and manifested in our reality. When this occurs, there’s no space left for that jerky inner critic.

Honor time by taking a few moments of focused stillness to tap into these flames of positive manifestation and allow them to thrive.

Let’s take the first step into this voyage. After taking your five breathes, allow the vibrations of relaxation to flow through you, flushing out the muck of worry that has latched on to your being.

Begin to envision your thoughts as clouds passing through the sky of your mind. You can view these clouds with a clear perspective, but are not intertwined in them- you’re just observing them with curiosity.

You don’t feel, absorb, or analyze the clouds- you just allow them to float by.

The dark clouds do not stay to rain down worry, they pass just as quickly as the others- they don’t touch you.

When you’ve separated from these clouds, feel yourself drifting deeper within, to your inner sanctuary.

  1. Do a song and dance routine- Sometimes we need to stop taking our problems, other people’s opinions, and ourselves so seriously. The best way to do this is act like a fool in love with life.

After you’ve moved through the fore mentioned release techniques stick that cherry on top by playing your jam and dancing like a fiend.

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We’re able to invest as much, or as little, time as we like to this release work, the time does not matter, it’s the intention that holds the power.

When we first begin our practice the voice may follow us for a bit, questioning the state of comfort that we’re floating in. But, the voice will eventually lose its luster, relinquishing its dominance to our true essence, residing in our core- the true essence that is composed of all that is good in the world, and all the wonder that is waiting to bloom into existence.

Mom Humor, Self Love

Bashfulness Be Gone

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I used to bathe with a bathing suit on, well, at least in public. You’re welcome public. I would be the bashful bather at the gym, standing to the side, waiting for a private shower stall to open up, while courageous ladies stripped down and had a rinse off. No way, not me; if I was desperate I would just shower with my bathing suit on.

That was me then, pre-baby.

This is me now; stripping off my bathing suit before the locker room door latches, because I only have 30 seconds to shower before my baby starts demanding boob from his milk-less caretaker. Modesty be damned.

I never thought I would ever be in a bathroom with onlookers urging my bowels to make moves. Okay, well maybe I realized this would be a possibility someday, but certainly not before my nineties. These onlookers were a stark reality of my birth experience. They wanted me to have a bowel movement really bad; but unfortunately, the stage fright, and resulting nerves, did not have the usual outcome of gurgling bowels.

After the no-go pooping debacle, all remaining traces of my modesty were wiped away, as my body pushed out a human, as four humans and one camera, looked on. Oh yes, someone also removed my shirt during this deposit of human, to prepare for the first public feeding of said human.

No one told me that my modesty would be drained out as my internal floodgate of baby love opened and poured in. As I began to feed my baby, my newfound boob boldness was put to the test as my brother-in-law entered the room. My initial reaction was to cover up, but this instinct was quickly overthrown by the ‘whatever’ echoing in my mind. It’s easier to have my boobs out while I’m feeding this hungry infant, whatever.

Since birthing a baby, I have undergone the following, quite liberating, metamorphoses.

Bras Shmas

The first few weeks postpartum, I not only vetoed the bra, but the shirt as well. My boobs were sore and the effort of pulling my shirt down or up every few minutes was just too much. Any Peeping Toms gazing through my bedroom window would have been treated to the vision of a drooling topless-women, with a man and a baby standing over her, repeating the mantra, ‘I think the baby is hungry again.’ The no-bra thing caught on, and I only wear one when I have to go to a wedding or a funeral.

Flatulence is a Fact and it’s Fun

People fart, I don’t care how proper you are; you fart. If you hold it in too much, you may be really cranky, because your stomach is likely in a constant state of turmoil; I should know, I used to be a chronic fart-holder-inner. Having a baby loosens everything up, which kind of forces you into adopting the motto, ‘if you gotta go, let it flow’; for pretty much all meanings you can attach to that saying. I now have a new understanding, and respect, for the older folks in my life who will boldly lift the side of their tush up during dinner and let one rip; who wants to eat dinner with a belly full of hot air? I have not yet reached the ‘bold brass balls’ level of toots touting, but I’m getting there.

‘There’s a chunk of food on my shirt?’ Pass it to me, I haven’t eaten in hours.

I’ve had everything from baby poop, boogers, green mush, and unidentified liquid on me since having a baby. Pre-baby Bailey would have changed her entire outfit after a miniscule drop of anything trickled onto the edge of her shirt, not anymore. It would take a waterfall like flow of spit up being issued from baby’s mouth, to my already dirty shirt, for me to hassle with changing.

Modesty can be such a nuisance if allowed to get out of control. It holds you back from just living, from just being, by distracting you with thoughts of, ‘how does this make me look?’ Who cares if some snooty pants scoff at your boldness if you’re happy and feel free to just be.