Aphrodite Sculpture, Europe, 3rd Century
As I write this on February 1st, I have just read a morning meditation on slowing down. I have to laugh because the entire month of January may have been the slowest time in my life. I had surgery on January 9 and so was forced to slow down. Initially I had not planned on telling anyone about it but a small circle of friends. But as I researched the surgery and discovered how many women of all ages are affected by pelvic organ prolapse (POP) I decided I must share my healing experience of both the emotional and physical. I cannot squelch the teacher in me!
Prior to surgery I spent a profound day and a half with a compassionate wise woman guide who taught me about loving, honoring and blessing those private parts of ourselves that have been suppressed through our patriarchal culture, and helped me to begin the healing process of my own #MeToo experiences which I felt I needed to do before I could face this intimate surgery. I spent the rest of January reading books, running the gamut of genres, but the discovery of the goddesses through a few profound books really opened my eyes. In the past, I have played with goddess oracle cards, read various stories about them in Greek and Celtic mythology, and taught in circles about the meaning of the Divine Feminine, her attributes and how we are connected to our Great Mother Earth.
Research from every continent indicates that, from roughly 30,000 to 3000 B.C.E. women and the Goddess were honored. I was immersed in the stories and archetypal myths, their symbology and resulting lessons of the Goddesses. I had several aha moments but my most important lesson was realizing how we speak very differently of our bodies' various parts and organs. If I had heart surgery, brain surgery, or any other organ or illness, I would certainly tell everyone. Why do we whisper (or is it just me?) when it comes to our feminine parts - the uterus, vagina, cervix... I don't know about you, but growing up my mom rarely used the proper words and tried not to speak of the whole thing at all. My friends called our menstruation time "my friend" or "the curse" depending on the mood. Sadly, I don't think I did much better with my own daughters since when approaching the subject, I felt their shyness and then my own timidity.
This path of learning from these beautiful myths and sacred mysteries which unveil the truths of our divine feminine and reignite the Goddess in all of us has been extremely healing for me. I am considering offering a women's circle with the particular theme of healing our sexual abuses. Let me know if this interests you.
If you are interested, here are the books I read, but I have a long list of others still to study!
Crossing to Avalon and Goddesses in Everywoman, both by Jean Shinoda Bolen
The Heart of The Goddess, a history and beautiful pictorial, by Hallie Iglehart Austen
On a practical note, I can answer questions or offer tips on the surgery if you ever need it!