Ever felt something and not known why you’re feeling it? I often get this with negative emotions. For a long time, I wasn’t comfortable with my own negativity. We’re taught to be okay and happy all the time.
Ever been asked “how are you?”? and you’ve replied “yeh good thanks”, but inside you’re screaming “WELL, actually, pretty shit. Work is stressing me out, things aren’t smooth at home at all, I feel like I’m constantly arguing with myself and everything feels like its falling down around me.” So many times, I’ve been asked this in the supermarket and I have wanted to tell the truth but I haven’t. I convince myself no-one wants to hear it and I should just buckle up and carry on.
Now, I constantly remind myself that its okay to not be okay, and that all I really need to do is just sit with it. You can go round and round in circles trying to work out why it is you feel the way you do, you end up feeling more hopeless and more helpless because you cant find the answers. Well maybe you don’t need to! Maybe all you need to do is sit with your emotions, acknowledge them, make peace with them, know that it will all bealright in the end and if it’s not alright it’s not the end. There’s still time. You’ll be back up there eventually but there’s no rush. Sometimes if you rush to pick yourself up again, you’re more likely to come crashing down again, harder and for longer. So take your sweet time and in the meantime, have a day.
So often we are also told to “have a good day” but what if we cant see any conceivable way of this happening? Sometimes, someone encouraging you to have a good day can just make you feel worse. Their intentions come from a good place, of course, but its not what you want to hear. So ‘have a day’ – eat nice food, wear comfy clothes and just be good to yourself in whichever way you can. Try not to be hard on yourself and try speak kindly to yourself. After all we have to live with ourselves for the rest of our lives, we might as well be friends with ourselves! You got this!
The dusk sky is my best reminder of my innate courage. It arrives just in time, at the end of the day, when night begins to draw in. The sky is blue, the colour of Borage flowers. Borage is for courage. The courage you showed in order to get through today, you did it! And the sun sets, it will rise once more and with it you will find the courage to see another day through. One day at a time, one foot in front of the other. Onwards, to the horizon.
Growing up I couldn’t stand the smell of it, the colour of it.
My favourite colours used to be pink and purple, then society taught that being a girl makes you weak, liking pink makes you weak. So I was a tomboy, stronger…. Favourite colour? “Purple. I hate pink, it makes me feel sick.”
Now, of course I know differently and although, I wouldn’t naturally choose to wear or own pink things, I don’t want to vomit at the sight of it anymore!
Funny, the stories we tell ourselves.
Whilst at University, I would have to leave the room if anyone was dispensing it. If anyone suggested I put it in my prescriptions, my lip would curl in disgust. It made me feel incredibly nauseous.
It is so important!
Self Love and Acceptance – equally important.
It was only when I started focussing on myself and my opinion of myself that my true journey with rose began.
Now I have a little bottle of rose syrup on my desk. I will happily wear rose scented cream and dispense it for my patients in their prescriptions. I welcome being enveloped by it. I love love love it!
So, if you don’t like the taste of your medicine, maybe it has something to teach you and you’ll only like the taste once you’ve learnt it!
Just a thought….
I will keep journeying on with Rose and indeed, all the other plants out there! Just promise me you’ll keep journeying towards loving yourself and carving out time for self care!
You feel like you’ve been here before ~ here, yes. You? No. At least not the same you.
We move in spirals, returning to the same place, but not as the same person we were the previous time around. It may not feel like you have, but you’ve changed and you’re stronger for it.
This is a love letter to the future me, the future you, who will no doubt return to this place again ~ yet even stronger!
It’s shit, I know, you really didn’t think it’d be like this. You keep hitting rock bottom and then you redefine what that means by sinking even further.
You were never in this for the money, you’ve always said you’d do Everything With Love. It’s hard to remind yourself of that love for your craft everyday, when you have bills to pay and meals to provide yourself with. When all these responsibilities suck the joy out of small achievements.
Look Darling Heart, look what you’ve built, look how far you’ve journeyed and all the storms you’ve weathered.
“Everything will be alright in the end, if it’s not alright, then it’s not the end”
There’s still time to change the story, let’s just see how this one ends.
You’ll find your way
It’ll come right
Just hold on, Breathe
You have a plan, yes.
You wrote it today, it might not solve everything right away, but it could open doors – just remember that when they open, you need to
Leave it all at the door
Have no Envy, and no Fear
Step forwards, Remember
Jasmine taught you well, she will not lead you astray
For those of you that know me, I live very closely to the Earth and the Season’s change. Growing up, I was always described as being sensitive. It’s true, I am. There are days when the wind blows a certain way and it makes me think “there’s something going on out there” and there will be, or there will be a pressure in the air that gives me a storming headache, which only clears when it rains.
I was sat with some friends in the kitchen yesterday talking about my recent achievements and tears of pride rose in my eyes, we then continued to speak about how I ‘well up’ at some pretty strange things. For example, I pulled some carrots from the ground the other day and the smell of them brought back such strong memories of when, at age 19, I volunteered on Organic farms in the UK. I travelled around by train with a pretty heavy backpack, covering a lot of distance. Such fond memories and how far I’ve come since then – I couldn’t stop the tears rising! I know, I know, carrots?! We all had a good giggle, you totally can too.
My entire family is like this, maybe not crying at the smell of carrots, but get us together after any length of time apart and we will be laughing so hard we cry and sometimes crying so hard we laugh. Something, it would appear I do a lot in other people’s kitchens! Either way, emotions flow freely in my family!
So at this time of year, when daylight hours equal the hours of darkness, we are in a space of balance. This time of year has often been called Harvest Home. Now, not all of you will be working the land and reaping an agricultural harvest, but you do have your own landscape. The landscape of your life and your journey, as you move through the year. So, take this time to pause and potentially adjust a little, pretty soon you’ll be making plans and preparations, now that, dare I say it, ‘winter is coming’. Look over all your achievements and everything you have learned so far ~ your harvest. Give thanks for all that you have. From all of this, new projects will grow in the future, if you just plant those little seeds!
If you view emotions as I do as ‘energy in motion’, you will see that everything you feel, has the potential to influence your journey ahead. What emotions are rising in you at the moment and where might they carry you? Glennie Kindred writes, in her book “Elements of Change” that you should “Let your feelings flow. The energy of release brings clarity and opens the way for a new part of your journey.”
For me, I will go back and look at the intentions I set at the end of July, give thanks for my achievements and potentially re-evaluate all that didn’t quite get completed. I will have a think about how to move forward from here. I will also be carving out some time to rest, times of balance are perfect opportunities to do just that!
It would appear that until now, I have only felt the need or desire to write blog posts in March. I missed my annual opportunity this year.
Much has happened since I last sat down to write, I have so much to tell you! How exciting. As always, I’d recommend sticking the kettle on so we can begin!
In February 2016 I embarked on a Fertility Massage Practitioner Training course with Clare Blake, as I felt it would really compliment using Herbal Medicine for Fertility and Women’s Health. Here, I met Charlotte, who invited me to join her team in Norwich. So, with my Atlas in my hand I set my sails and began working with the Norwich Natural Fertility Partnership (NNFP) in May 2016, offering Herbal Medicine Consultations and Pregnancy Massage. Since then I have helped many women empower themselves, have seen 2 babies grow and arrive Earthside, with 3 more on their way!
In March 2016 I rather adventurously took on a second course – Red Tent Doula Preparation with Nicola Goodall, and after much self-reflection, inner work and a stack of reading, I have emerged with another certificate! I am now a Red Tent Doula, but it doesn’t stop there! No this is just the beginning! In October of this year I will enrol on the Doula UK course and alongside my mentor Callie, I will continue my journey learning this craft and art.
In October 2016 I had a bit of a change of direction in my personal life, it’s taken a while for me to move through this, but what I can tell you, is that it has fuelled my professional life and my work forwards, in the direction it should always be moving in. I am now and forever, on the return journey home to myself and to my craft.
This term came about from reading a truly wonderful book called “52 Flowers That Shook My World” by Charlotte Du Cann. You really must read it!
Opening this book and reading the first few lines made me immediately snuggle down into myself. What a treat! I’m savouring this one for as long as possible! “The Return Journey” is a concept that has had a hold of me for over 2 years now, potentially, sometimes without me realising it. As Charlotte writes: “Everything on earth is about to return”. We wait for the sun to return after long winters or for the cool autumn breeze to return after endless summers. We move in circles, in cycles, in spirals. Always coming back to ourselves, to the Earth.
I remember a time when I was so busy during the day and into the evening, when I’d collapse into bed and immediately fall asleep. My dreams would be just as active as my days. I wouldn’t, I couldn’t rest! And yet, always searching, always asking the questions of how to be different, who, what was I waiting for? That moment when you climb into bed, exhale deeply – there! That is the moment! That is my daily return journey. Every evening now, I return back to myself, I am the person I have been waiting for. I have made a home within myself. This, as with many things present in my life at the moment is not something I’ve learnt, it is a remembering.
“Remembering, is like coming home, every time” – Brian Boothby
Whilst reading this beautiful book and all throughout the summer, I have been noticing a little plant ally, peeping at me, almost everywhere I go!
Self Heal – Prunella vulgaris. Not knowing much about the plant, other than as it’s name suggests – healing thyself, I asked some fellow herbalists. One remembers Christopher Hedley saying that it brings you back to you, so you can be yourself. Another, even more poignantly said that it can be used for those who have lost their way or wandered from their path often – to help them find their way again. So little Prunella has been by my side this summer on my return journey home, encouraging me when I stray and strengthening me when I falter.
A singer from my childhood – Nanci Griffiths – once introduced her song “The Wing and the Wheel” by saying – “there is no need in life for anyone to become complacent”. She really spoke to me and I feel that in a way, some time ago, I may have started to become complacent and comfortable. When this happens, things start to stagnate. This isn’t good! Time for a change.
After three wonderful years, growing, learning and evolving at The Treatment Rooms, working alongside Jessica, I decided it was time for a brave and bold step forwards.
“All great experiences lie just beyond your comfort zone” as Jessica said to me once, with a glint in her eye.
I have now opened my own treatment room in Newtown House, Henley-on-Thames and it has been the best decision. I have my dispensary, my desk and my treatment table all in one place.
With this move approaching I reached out to Aspen Weatherburn of Hello Henley, to give me some direction about this – blogging – a new website and how best to manage my social media campaigns. I have to say, it’s been difficult at times but I have learned SO much about technology and myself. Thank you, Aspen, for being part of all of this.
So come on down, see my new space, I’ll stick the kettle on…
“Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the whole earth revolves – slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
Just keep coming back to yourself lovely Earthlings, you’re doing just fine!
I will be taking a short break from the Intuitive Plant Tasting and Meditation Workshops so there is more time to focus on the Fertility Massage and Doula Training courses I adventurously took on at the same time!
I am already learning so much and discovering more about myself which will undoubtedly strengthen and expand how I currently work with all you lovely Earthlings.
There has been some beautiful crisp, clear, blue sky and beaming sun filled days recently. My favourite thing to do on these days is to close my eyes, face the sun and think.
“Welcome Back Golden Sunshine Smile”
The gradually lengthening hours of daylight bring hope and promise to the new season – have a look and see which buds and young plants are pushing though and use them as a reminder that this time of year is all about Growth.
So now is the time to nurture your projects as if they were freshly sprouted seedlings needing care and attention. Believe in them and they will bring light and growth to the world.
Trust in yourself and your projects and look out for signposts directing you to the path that will allow your projects to Flourish.
Here at Red Earth I wish you every success in your plans and projects.
I am casting my mind back to my journey here – the still point of the turning world.
So, I have decided to share a small part of it with you.
After many summers, holidays, weekends, pit stops spent with Tamsin and Marc and their beautiful family at Bosley Patch, working the land hard and having lot of fun doing so, I found myself struggling to leave for any length of time, promising I would always come back and with one more backward glance, feeling an emptiness fill my chest.
It was when here felt like real life and there felt strange to me that I decided I needed to make a change. ‘you’re most welcome to make this your real life, any time you like, you know’ was something I heard many times over the years from Tamsin – 2014 was the year I listened.
So I combined this family, who are as close to being my own family as my own is to me, this beautiful place and my ideas and dreams into one and threw them into my forward vision. I did everything I could, worked the hardest I could to get there as quickly and as much in one piece as I could.
Three part time jobs, the weekly 20 hour day, one broken foot and an old Nissan Micra packed to the rafters later and me and my dearest Maman (Mum), hit the open road one sunny day at the end of July and made the journey from North to South. Her companionship and loving help have been the most important thing to me over the years and I am blessed to have such a remarkable woman for a mother.
I settled into a little vintage caravan under the walnut tree in Tamsin’s garden and was swiftly offered a job in the campsite cafe on Swiss Farm ~ who by the way, make excellent coffee! I also found myself back in the garden again, elbows and knees deep in the earth – all was well and I knew I had finally arrived at my starting point.
Coming from a nomadic family renowned for needing to travel and keep moving, it wasn’t always plain sailing. The days when the wind would pick up and warm breezes would roll in were the days when I almost packed up and left again. I don’t know what made me stand my ground this time, but I stayed because this time, leaving wasn’t the right thing to do.
As the long summer days of hard graft, manual labour, aching muscles and satisfying exhaustion started to draw in, I found the space and time to direct my focus to the path ahead. I welcomed the slower, autumn days because sometimes we need to ‘slow down long enough to know where we are going next’. I’m not sure who said that ~ but its true! I put some feelers out, talked to a lot of people and finally got in touch with Jessica at Massage For Everybody, who manage The Treatment Rooms at the Red Lion Hotel.
We had a chat and I was welcomed onto the team, she has since helped me no end with extra training days, evening marketing and planning sessions and the repetitive but therapeutic days out leafletting. I explained that I was happy for things to move forwards slowly as I was still working for Bosley Patch and Coffee @ Swiss Farm. ‘How slow is slow?’ asked Jess, ‘Oh I’d like to be full time by February’, I replied. A fast definition of slow perhaps? I am my mothers daughter after all! So, here I am, full time in February and what a wonderful feeling!
There have, of course been small moments of doubt along the way, but Tamsin has been there telling me to pull myself together because it ‘will all come right in the end’ whilst giving me an enormous hug. Marc has also been there, offering quiet, big brotherly support as only he can. The children have plied me with endless cuddles and trusty kitchen discos, all held together with Pip the dog resting his chin on my knee at precisely the right moment. This family have shown such enormous generosity, love and support towards me. After 5 months of living at the end of their garden, I moved into my own little caravan on Swiss Farm, just round the corner from where it all began.