Years ago, I embarked on a life-changing journey to rediscover and claim myself. My first husband and I let go of our long marriage, my last chickens flew out of the nest and I gathered a few shreds of my tarnished brilliance back to me and journeyed deep into transforming my life.
I wrote a letter to my departing spouse describing my lost-ness. Shared from the perspective of a girl, I communicated my needs through her voice as I write her story in a way that I came to understand as mytho-poetic. Hers was story of who I was, at my core.
I was the young one, once. A dreaming self who had so much hope and zest for life. I shared that she was discouraged early. She loved deeply and followed her dreams, but as she lived into the life she had chosen, she had to bury her deepest self to respond to the needs around her. She had to quiet her dance and bury her jewels before they were set and worn.
This Young One was the archetype of the creative wild bubbling up from my deep psyche, I had lost her stories until I wrote her words and as I shared her losses, I became conscious of my own need to reclaim my spirit. Through my art I re-discovered my known and unknown stories, claimed my shadow material that had trapped me in shame and followed my deep desires into life.
These are the other things I know, NOW after years of knowing her and gathering threads of her archetypal stories:
- The Young One became the Wise Woman over the years and she was served well by her years of training.
- She discovered hidden gifts within herself and turned to the owl wisdom of intuition to lead her, but in the early years she had no idea what she was doing.
- As she was being stripped of her young light-hearted dancing self, she became vulnerable and returned to an old identity, the inner orphaned child was present as she was bearing her own children.
- This too, became difficult for her to balance – she could not sustain her responsibilities and be a vulnerable child. The pressure of meeting the needs of young children and a man who was struggling with his own pain, weighed on her.
- She needed a strong ally to protect her own rising vulnerability.
- The wise woman within birthed the warrior, Athena, and there was no room for the Young One. She had been put away.
- Athena, ever practical, could respond to any crisis and in fact had a sixth sense of when a storm was brewing, the mistress of healing was her gift, as well.
- The warrior could always bring up the wise woman, to nurture and respond, but Athena felt she had to remain ever vigilant and responsive, protecting and responding.
- The Young One stayed, hidden underneath her many faces…waiting for her time to reclaim her power.
In that first letter, I wrote that it was my time again, the time for my true self to return. The loss of her spirit was too great to bear and I was desperate to dance and be danced. In the midst of my gray world, and my gray self, I invited my life to unfold in new ways.
At the time, I did not realize that this letter marked a place of entering, a doorway into my new life. The voice of the Young One, came to me through a deep unmet desire, a need to find out who I was and reclaim my missing selves.
This voicing was a mythic, artistic opening into a journey of personal healing and transformation. Exploring the content of my life through lived and intuited experience, the symbolic language of art that held the clues to my known and unknown stories, I followed the threads and clues as they appeared to me in life, memories, dreams, art and nature. I approached each thread of information through the lens of multiple mediums, and perspectives. I turned ‘what I thought I knew’ upside-down and inside out. As I shifted and realigned my own understanding, as I created the space to reclaim my whole self.
I am artist of life.
I am a guidess.
I live what I teach.
I invite the creative to become transformative.
I guide others through doorways of discovery and claiming.