Fresh out of 4 days of community, expansion and absolute joy of Wanderlust festival, I went straight into a 2 day immersion with 'Off the Mat into the World' – lead by the equally dynamic Suzanne Stirling and Kerri Kelly. I uncovered truths and limiting self beliefs that I knew were still in me rearing their ugly little heads in moments of self doubt, but I had no idea just how much my soul needed to do this work and reclaim my voice that had been suppressed through childhood.
I have found my voice in teaching but still struggle in some of my intimate personal relationships to speak my truth. I have told myself the story that I can't sing, I have covered my voice behind shame and fear, fear of not being enough, fear of abuse and confrontation. As I fully surrendered to the work of the past to days I felt deeply held tension and repression unravelling from the tissues of my body, as I moaned, sighed and sang I dropped in to a deep physical relief that I haven't felt in years. As I fully own my traumas, pains and heartbreaks I allow the richness of those life experiences to connect me deeper to my purpose, to live more from my authentic truth and share that whole heartedly, to create dynamic change in myself and the world around me. I am deeply filled with gratitude in being supported to uncover the deepest parts of my self the shadows and the light.
Kerri shared this poem, it touched me deeply...
It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.
It doesn't interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, 'Yes.'
It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn't interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
Oriah Mountain Dreamer