Medicinalmeadows

the place within…..


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Mature 49

49 is not what I expected. I started my working life as a medical professional then turned holistic and spiritual practitioner and so far this week my practice has been my saving grace.  I have navigated my own selfcare treatments from Reiki to calm my nervous system to Reflexology to regulate the endocrine. It is a rollercoaster of a role to witness our elder’s needs from lightbulb changes, medication dosette boxes, emergency calls and missing wheelchairs.

I have called upon my spiritual allies to help in many varying degrees from negotiating contracts and holding space for my Mother as she feels she is losing her friends to dementia. Then there’s my Fathers loss of mobility and fragility. My faith in the wise and well ancestors have been my allies in the subtle realms only too willing to be called upon.

I lean to the ancestors, after all I am them, my bones and facial features are theirs, from them I am born. The role of the carer is a difficult one to navigate. It arrives at a time when I myself am changing. I go through a multitude of transitions being a 49 year old woman, self employed spiritual business practitioner, a wife, a friend, a listener and a menopausal shifter.

Whilst navigating the elder’s care needs in an ever-shifting NHS and social care system I am trying to figure out the menopausal fatigue and wonder if my symptoms are from too much or too little evening primrose right now. I am pulled to “clean house” of the unfinished business I have stacked up. The courses, submissions, assessments and the continuing professional development that is a feature of all our professional pursuits these days. I am always reading 4 books and far too tired to complete any. Then there is the cleaning out of the emotional and energetic baggage of old worn out perspective and my inner archetypes all shouting for some deep witnessing.

This thing they call menopause is a maturing of the old ways, the inner pathways, a realisation of what has worked well and what has not. Call it menopause, call it a life review if you dare! It is the wise one willing me to tune inwards and not be so outwards when the world is wanting me to be all things. This crone inside is trying to be birthed into a new way of navigating the here and now. So while we nurture those around us, the message deep within is “Who is nurturing you?” Birthing is painful and changeful. It can’t be pushed down or ignored. So no wonder I am feeling the fatigue of this gestation from menstruation.

It is the big gardening of mature life. Call it weeding for now, it is asking what am I keeping up and what do I need to let go? What is right for me and what is right now for me? 49 is full of loose ends, never-ends and the inevitable end. Right now the weeding is all important as I take this time to nurture the garden within.  As the elders take an afternoon nap, the cat does too and the 49 year olds are discerning, weeding and regulating their nervous system with left-right eye movements in the mid-day sun. One day I will be through the change, transformed and the ancestor of my family tree.

The red tent to women like me in the middle of life, becomes a life tent. It is the anchor that sits you down and holds you in.  It is a place remembered for birth and death, but it is also for the mid shifters,  for transformation. It is the place to go to in pain, in need, knee deep with the earth and discerning cries, “help me transform, shift through it all”. If you have never been inside a red tent, create one, create if just for yourself! It is the resting place and the place to let it all flow.

Here in the middle we are asked to change, do work differently,  parenting and elder care differently. Our loved ones change, societies views and expectations change, my hair colour has changed….and everyday the needs of those and ourselves change.  My own requirements move and new boundaries need to be created, what once was ok is now far from acceptable. They call this growth in the spiritual community, with grow there can also be pain. So the message for now is take it slowly, even when there are urgent moments, walk the earth with every step at a slower pace because everything is changing.


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The Menopause, the Matrix and the Moon

For Christmas I gave myself adrenal fatigue. This feeling of minimal activity and maximum fatigue is not a new thing for me. I am well versed in how this goes. I am also well attuned to deep rest, hydration and good food to begin with, from a well oiled radar to the early signs. The “Holiday” in deep winter has me thinking that I am not as attuned to the seasons as I thought. My preparation for Christmas was not at all prepped appropriately. My inner vision was covered. I did not see the wood, literally, for the trees and here is why.

I got swept into the tangibility of it all. The Matrix was there with its all seeing eyes and I was lost to it. I got moved along with the to-do-lists, helped my elders with their food preparation, the lights and the tinsel. I colluded to buy and messy wrap the presents and all the time my energy levels waned and I knew it. I felt it, I recognised my bodily signs saying, slow down. I went out again and again when the fire side was calling with its soft golden glow and its warming invites. I left for one last trip with the Christmas cards.

All this was done out of love, but was it love for myself! And where do you draw the line with your loved ones at Christmas to say, I am done! I am menopausal, my instincts are saying I need to go inside and withdraw not do more. I am listening to my body and my answer is just one more thing! But the body knows the limits and has no cajoling from the mind, the body doesn’t say ok, let’s finish all this and high five. No, the body has a limit and when the limit is overstepped it shouts now, now is the time for rest and no more.

All this came home to me yesterday as we sorted, cut and piled the wood from the pruned trees in our garden. Here I was again, but this time the realisation was of my sacred rhythms with the trees and the land. As I over stretched once again I had this vision that my ancestors worked with the rhythms of the seasons. I thought I was doing so well with my menstrual practice cycling like the earth with my inner landscape then it occurred to me, what do we do when the cyclicity is gone.

Here I was without the clock, without the dial, the rhythms all gone. I was chopping wood in winter when this could have been done in preparation. My ancestors would have prepared for winter, just as I had prepared in the autumn of my cycle, my premenstrual phases, listing and smoothing things over so I rested in winter. My inner cyclicity had been musical even, never mind rhythmical…..and now as I arrive in this space of no cyclicity it began to look more like no-womans-land.

My world was not prepared for the winter. If I had looked, really looked at myself and my nature this would have been all in good timing. The cutting, pruning and gardening would have been put to bed weeks ago. If my body had been in a menstrual cycle I would have been prepared for this! But is it just me, or is the outer world out of sync? As I sit here typing, the window is open the hedges are green and it seems the earth herself is in a great flux of menopausal seasonal crisis of no-womans-land too!

When I close my eyes and think of my ancestry I see the high stocked wood stores, the jars of pickled fruits and veg, the importance of the harvest festival and the fire flickering and tended to day and night. Frosty mornings and sleet showers with streets of leaves piling up the brick walls. Houses with the lights on early and no more to do about the gardens but witness and welcome the returning of the light in weeks to come. Nothing kept for keeping sake and nothing needed but stillness and the flame.

My awareness is bringing up that familiar nervousness that all is not right with the world. I am aware of what has occurred on the inner landscape and I can accept that and find my path again. But what can be done about the outer landscapes, how do we assist the cycles of the season of this planet? Is this a greater task that we have as a collective? Is this a task for all women at menopause, as we sit in nature to nurture ourselves can we be in reciprocity at this time? Is it time to nourish both? If the earth is also out of cyclicity do we now look to the moon for our rhythms and reflect deep into our old ways, the wise and the well, the ancient and ancestral knowing once more?


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May’s discoveries for health and wellbeing  

I have been reading Code Red by Lisa Lister. In this book the author creates a
simple way to view the menstrual cycle. The rhythms of pre-ovulation, ovulation, pre-menstrual and menstrual perceived as the seasons, spring, summer autumn and winter brings about a new found understanding for how to plan activities and self-care. Just thinking of  diary commitments and the seasons of the cycle has brought about a new respect for scheduling. Not only that, there ARE benefits to autumn and winter days that I am just discovering and bringing into being. There is a new found creativity “period” to be welcomed in at this time. If you need some ideas birthing projects or working events then working with the flow of our cycle instead of pushing against it is the message. Lisa has a friendly writing style and introduces elements of feminine history and uterine health than make you spark off on your own research trails to see what deeper understanding can be found outside of the book as well.

There are links to her website for charting and getting a little geeky as she says, with understanding the individuality of the cycle. The website has downloads to print out guidance, charts and picture wheels. Well worth taking
a look as well as the resources section at the back of the book.

 

The crystal for this month is the lovely peach moonstone, a gentle energy for the sacral chakra. It has a soothing property and is emotionally supportive. It is said to alleviate worries and bring a lift to positive vibrations, and of course, a balance to the feminine energies.

Instead of clary sage, I have been using rosemary oil mixed with lavender in fractionated cocunut oil carrier oil (safe blending). It has brought me a lift in my energy giving me a gentle wake-up on those tired days.

I have invested in the Soulful Woman Affirmation cards. These bring about a lift of positivity for the day. The artwork is bright and colourful and the words on the cards are comforting. I find there is little need for the guide book due to a good explanation on the bottom of the cards as well as the eye being drawn to the intricate artwork.

That’s my monthly round up, so what has inspired you in the health and wellbeing section this month?

Much Love,

Janice x