Maiden/ Mother/ Crone by Sulamith Wulfing

Maiden/ Mother/ Crone by Sulamith Wulfing

 
 
 
 
 

 Sarah Durham Wilson is a women's writer and leader.

Once a rock journalist in New York City & L.A., her Saturn Return viscerally ended one life and began another: one devoted wholly to the Goddess. A teacher & retreat leader, she's journeyed thousands of women through witch awakenings, onto the Priestess Path, and she now leads them across the bridge of the archetypal Maiden to Mother Passage, which is her current focus & devotion. 

She is actively participating in her anti-racism work and has a no tolerance policy for bigotry. All are welcome to her work, and she is unlearning patriarchal toxicity every day.

 
 
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“You have no idea what you have done for me. You have awoken the goddess within me. Thank you for what you do for the world."
~ Elyssa

 

MAIDEN TO MOTHER: THE NEW JOURNEY

launching March 13, 2019

 
Maiden/ Mother/ Crone by Sulamith Wulfing

Maiden/ Mother/ Crone by Sulamith Wulfing

MAIDEN TO MOTHER SPRING 2019:

MARCH 13 to MAY 15th

WELCOME to THE CROSSING of MAIDEN TO MOTHER.

WE ARE SO GLAD YOU’RE HERE.


The Maiden to Mother Journey restores the vital, long buried feminine rite of passage from girl to woman.

+ It reframes beauty from the patriarchal lens - which defines beauty as external and fleeting - to a soul based, internal, eternal power that blooms with age.

+ This is a journey devoted to the healing and wholeness of the most prevalent feminine archetype in our society; the Wounded Maiden.

+ This work supports the “Motherless” Maidens into the next season of their life, the Healthy Mother, assisting them from the Becoming stage of their lives into their actual Being.

+ Missing this full moon stage of maturity and sovereignty is the great tragedy of the modern Feminine.

+ This Journey challenges the toxic notion that age is something to fear, instead, it argues, age is an initiation of power, self actualization, and wholeness.

+ This work explores the notion that midlife is not, as this culture proposes, where a woman’s power ends, but instead, where it actually begins.

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PART ONE.

MOVING OUT OF MAIDEN.

It feels like:



“I was being called into this threshold.

I was being told not to ignore this deep and painful pause of emptiness, that thing or no- thing we fear so much.

I was being told that this was real, this crossing, this threshold, and not to ignore it, just because this is a Feminine Rite of Passage that’s been buried by a patriarchal culture

did not mean it wasn’t real.


We must call it back.

We must call it forth.

We must call each other forth.

We must talk about it between each other, with each other.

We must talk about the power of Mother.

We must talk about the power of the fullness of a woman in the full moon, the full bloom, the summer of her life in which she becomes and gives her greatest offering, her truest self.

We have to talk about this to make it, to make us, real.” *





A large part of my work has been influenced by the late great Jungian Analyst Marion Woodman. And the rumor is--  or perhaps it's just been surmised from her life's work, which, by the way, truly began at 40-  that on her deathbed Woodman wished,

for *all women to live a life of their own.*

In doing this work, we ask ourselves, what is that- a life of our own- and have we lived it?

And if not,

when will we?

Do you ever feel stuck in girlhood, and like it’s to “grow up,” hard to progress into the power of womanhood?

There IS a block for many of us, and it’s due to the disappearance of this bridge we once crossed together.

In doing this work, we rebuild the bridge from Maiden to Mother,

TOGETHER.

The first part of this journey we study - to release- the patterns that keep us in Wounded Maiden.

When I began this journey myself, I spent years studying the patterns of the Wounded Maiden.

I didn’t have to look very far- I of course, was that Motherless (by Motherless, I mean lacking connection to internal source, lacking confidence, self trust, self protection- an Inner Mother. I also lost my Mother to cancer when I, and she, were both young.)

Before I did this work I was constantly drowning in the waters of life, with no inner lifeguard. I could not figure out how to save myself, but I was very good at drowning.

For the first part of my life, and then deep into what others would consider womanhood, I was a scared, distracted, immature, reactive and vain girl.

I began to study my behavior- and it resonated with the collective feminine wounds of fragility, vanity and victimhood.

I started to develop a theory that this paradigm we're in, this culture of patriarchal toxic masculinity, actually groomed and wanted us to stay these terrified little girls.

I realized the culture bullied and bred us to stay this way throughout, dare I say, our potentially wasted lives.

The Death of the Maiden is where we enter the Portal and the work begins.

The Maiden is the healthy beginning phase of our life- it becomes unhealthy when we stay trapped in the phase of Maiden, deep into what needs to be our womanhood, or, the archetypal Mother,

the Full Moon of Our Lives.


Here we’ll take a deeper look at the traits of the Wounded Maiden which have been perpetuated by a toxic masculine society. These are the wounded natures, behaviors and reactions that have kept us trapped in our smallness, like fragile girls.



These are the behaviors, if, we still came together in Community for Rites of Passage Ceremonies, we would be laying down as we crossed over into Mother—Into the Summer of our Lives.

Identifying the traits of our Wounded Maiden is the first step across the threshold into Mother.


Do you feel ready to “grow up” and self-actualize?

What does it mean to grow up, what does it mean to become ourselves?


This is what we do on the journey from Maiden into Mother, we come more fully into our power, to live a life of our own, so that when our time comes to die, at what we can only hope is an old age, we are at peace, not haunted by own unlived dreams—we feel we have truly lived.

We find ourselves at this crossroads when we deeply know we are not giving our fullness to life.

We instinctually know we aren’t living our “own” lives, and that just like the nature we are born from, we are meant to bloom.

To come into Mother is to bloom.

When we bloom, we give our greatest gift- ourselves- to the world.

We don’t want to stay closed, we will harden and wither away this way- but so many of us do, we stay closed and fearful from the bruises life has given us, and in our fear, we cannot give our full gifts to life.

It is at this crossing that we want- that we consciously choose- to open, and offer ourselves to the world. .


Are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?

- Mary Oliver.

This journey is about strengthening the focused inner experience, over the noise of the distracting outer life.

It is about holding our vision for ourselves and the world and birthing that.

In Wounded Maiden we have yet to truly hear ourselves because we have yet to truly know ourselves- and that is all okay.

That's what the searching phase, the beginning phase, of the Maiden is about. It's the searching of identity, the searching of a place in the world, the searching of our own voice.


I’ve spent my whole life trying to prove that I am good

Now I just want to be me
Trying so hard to “be nice”

erased

my personality.*



Two of the things that die with the death of the Maiden: one, her attachment to fantasy, it's the death of the fairy tale that she will be rescued from her life by anyone but herself.

Reality is not a bad word: she finds out who she really is, what really matters to her, & what she really wants.

The death of fantasy, of crushes & unlived dreams, the death of the delusion she will live forever, that others are responsible for her happiness, only serves to empower her & break her out of her glass case, to live, to act.

The Death of the Maiden precludes the Birth of the Mother.

There are Three

Ways to Join Us.

Payment Plan (3 Monthly Payments of $111).

Click Here or the Button Below for the Payment Plan Option.


Full Payment.

A One Time Full Payment for all 9 weeks.

Click Here or the Button Below for the One Time Full Payment Option.

One Time Payment for the Full Journey PLUS 3 45 Minute Personal Sessions and Runework.

$497

This is the option to have my personal guidance with you along the way. I’ve walked with many womxn across this threshold and I’d be honored to personally hold space for you as you cross over into Mother.

We’ll have three personal calls together at your time of choice:

a personal 45 minute introduction call where we identify where you are on your journey and you can ask me any questions you like. We’ll consult the Runes for your path guidance. The Runes are the ancient Nordic Fortune Telling Stones I’ve been working with as Oracle for most of my life, first, and then deepen into the call. We’ll identify the Maiden traits you’re entering with as we begin the crossing of this threshold.

Around the time of the Underworld calls we’ll do a mid journey check in with you and the Runes to feel how you’re doing in your transition, and what blocks you might be meeting.

At the end of the journey we’ll finish with a one on one closing call to seal the work in and come up with a plan to continue your Mother Work.



PART TWO.

JOURNEY WITH SUMERIAN GODDESS of HEAVEN and EARTH and REBIRTH, INANNA, and HER DARK SISTER of the UNDERWORLD, ERESHKIGAL.


INANNA.

It was time to figure out who the hell I was,

just like Inanna went to Hell

to figure out who the hell She was.


This Maiden to Mother Journey was birthed from the lessons of Inanna’s brave and endlessly rich Heroine’s Journey.

As we dive into the Underworld, that space between lives, we’ll be guided by the the teachings from the Journey of Goddess Inanna, The Sumerian Goddess who chose to go to the Underworld to meet her Dark Sister Ereshkigal, and in doing so, face her own dark half. When Inanna rose, she would never be the same- for she had become her true self. When she changed her own life, she changed the world. She knew she would have died in her safe everyday existence, and that in the adventure of following her heart’s call, she’d be reborn.

Together we’ll walk through the the gates of her endlessly relatable tale of facing her darkness to find her light.



PART THREE.

THE UNDERWORLD.

Maybe it feels like you're on the bottom of the ocean

and you've been here for a while now

and you're looking up at everyone else going on with their lives while

you lay in the wreck of your life, unable to

move forward.

Welcome to the Underworld. It is the pause between lives, between the archetypes. It is the gestation period between death and rebirth. Acknowledging we’re in the Underworld can be the very path out, back to life.


Maureen Murdoch, who wrote The Heroine’s Journey, says that to be “in the underworld is to be chastened and cleansed by the fires of transformation.

It is to witness one’s own death, attend one’s own funeral.”

I finally realized I was all alone

I was going to have to live without their training wheels

I was finally going to have to believe in me

First it was terrifying

Then I felt free.*

To find and free the buried goddess within us, we really don't ascend or transcend:

We move down into ourselves

for the goddess lives in our bodies and the goddess lives in the earth.

We have to descend for her into the earth, into our bodies, into the mud where she’s been buried, where we’ve repressed our true selves, where the lotus of us is buried.

This process, Maureen Murdoch says, is the spiritual experience for women. It's one of moving more deeply into self rather than out of self.

This is where we meet the splintered off, buried dark parts of ourselves. It’s where we grieve the Maiden, and welcome back the parts of us we haven’t let breathe or see the light of our days. We uncover and re discover the parts we’ve covered over.

It’s deep beautiful midwifing work to allow the birth into Mother.

This is where we ask the big questions of ourselves to reframe and redirect our lives.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do--
determined to save
the only life you could save.

- The Journey, Mary Oliver.

PART FOUR.

THE BIRTH OF THE MOTHER.

When we're in Wounded Maiden, the outer voices are louder than the inner voice.

When we’re in Healthy Mother, the inner voice is louder than the outer voices.

All change happens with sacrifice and we know we can no longer be in Maiden to serve our world.

As we know, with every change in our life, there's some sacrifice, there’s some death for the birth.

The Maiden died for the Mother to be birthed.
The Mother  is the one who can tend to the cries of the world.

The Maiden only has space for her pain- The word Mother holds the word Other. The Mother can hold space for herself, as well as space for the other. She has moved from Me, to We.

The gift of the Maiden is thinking she has forever.

The gift of the Mother is knowing she does not.

This is our sacred activation time,

to live a life of our own design.


“...Are my boots old? Is my coat torn?
Am I no longer young and still not half-perfect? 
Let me
keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be
astonished....”

--Mary Oliver





Stop looking for your beauty in the mirror.

That’s not where your true beauty is.

This is where we begin the process of kneeling at the Altar of our Inner Beauty…

Something else that begins to die with the death of the Maiden, like petals falling from the shattered open flower, is her external beauty which she once relied upon, which therefore allowed her to rely upon external validation.

Now, she must rely upon her soul. The time of the Mother is the bloom of that soul.

This passage: her first wrinkles, the thinning of her hair, the softening & slight sagging of her skin/ for she is literally, softening/ will also serve her, by inviting her to go within herself to re-define what beauty truly is.

If beauty is no longer her face, where and what is it?

Is it self reliance, bravery, her intuition, resilience, grace, authenticity,  compassion, imagination, service, humor, vulnerability coupled with strength?

She will reach down deep & allow these powers to rise.

Her beauty from now on will need no mirror for validation.

This Internal eternal beauty will be what she loves herself & is loved for, not the fleeting external.

Her soul, her truth, her gifts, will be seen.

These deaths of the Maiden, if allowed with grace, were always giving way to births, and these dark feminine passageways were always leading to wisdom.

This is where we discover the power of age, and bask in the privilege of it, where we discover the spiritual secrets of passing into age.And where we’ll uncover a lifetime’s worth of tips to stay seated on your personal inner throne.

Are we ready to become Mothers to ourselves and Mothers to the world?

What could matter more than returning the healthy, life giving Mothers to a dying crying world?

PART FIVE.

FINAL BONUS CALL:

Self Care for the Vessel who has brought us this far:

A Relaxing Slow Down Final Call for Vibrant Natural Internal and Eternal Beauty.

30 Slow, Holistic and Natural and ancient recipes to care for our body mind and spirit as we age.

The Wise Woman’s Path to Deep, Eternal & Internal Beauty for a long beautiful life.


3 Ways to Join:


what: INTRO TO THE MOTHER WORK.
when: 5 PM EST, Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity, with Call Notes & Ritual Suggestion Posted in the Group Portal.

+ Welcome & Why We Do This Work.

What to Expect:

+ You’ll be invited into circle, offered the opportunity to introduce yourself to the other passengers,

to tell us a bit of where you are on your journey,

why you’ve been called to do this work,

and to set your intentions for this work.

+ We’ll look at the big picture of why this RITE of PASSAGE is so vital to the Collective Feminine.

Image: Ophelia by Voodica

Image: Ophelia by Voodica

what: THE DEATH OF THE MAIDEN PART I & II

when: 5 PM EST, Wednesdays, March 20th & March 27th, 2019

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity, with Call Notes & Ritual Suggestion Posted in the Group Portal.

This is where we enter the Portal and the work begins.

+What to Expect: Identifying the Healthy Maiden

+Identifying the Traits of the Wounded Maiden

+Identifying Our Maiden Masks

+the Unhealthy Risks of the Maiden vs the Healthy Risks of the Mother

+Identifying the Self Mother Response to the Wounded Traits

+Ritual Work to Release the Traits of the Wounded Maiden

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what: INANNA, ERESHKIGAL, & THE HEROINE’S JOURNEY.
when: 5 PM, Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity, with Call Notes & Ritual Suggestion Posted in the Group Portal.

What to Expect:

+The Myth of Goddess Inanna + Her Dark Sister Ereshkigal

+The Teachings + Lessons of her Heroine’s Journey + How they Apply to Modern Life

+ Tracking our own Heroine’s Journey: What is Calling Us?


BREAK/ INTEGRATION WEEK // NO CALL WEDNESDAY APRIL 10th.


image: daniel vazquez

image: daniel vazquez



what: THE UNDERWORLD PART I & II

when: 5 PM EST, Wednesdays April 17th & 24th, 2019.

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity, with Call Notes & Ritual Suggestion Posted in the Group Portal.

What to Expect:

+Allowing Change + Honoring Loss in Our Lives

+Losing Our Masks

+Navigating Nothingness + the In Betweens

+Meeting the Dark Sister in Us

+Feeling our Unfelt Feelings

+Midwifing Through Transition

+Ask the big questions of ourselves to reframe and redirect our lives.

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what: THE RISE OF THE MOTHER PART I & II

when: 5 PM EST, Wednesdays, May 1st, & May 8th, 2019.

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity, with Call Notes & Ritual Suggestion Posted in the Group Portal.

What to Expect:

+embodying healthy leadership

+the qualities of the Healthy Mother Archetype

+Recognizing the Death Mother

+finding our inner seat / throne

+staying in Mother during chaos

+spiritual secrets of age

+a lifetime of tips to stay on your inner throne

+Kneeling at the Altar of Inner Beauty: allowing our internal + eternal beauty to rise.


what: THE WISE WOMAN’S PATH TO ETERNAL, INTERNAL BEAUTY

when: 5 PM, Wednesday EST, May 15th, 2019.

details: a Live Call, Recorded for Posterity.

A refreshing, relaxing call walking down the path of self care for Mind Body and Spirit beauty and renewal to care for the vessel which has walked us this far and to support a long and beautiful life.

30 of my favorite self care recipes featuring tonics, teas, hair masks, body scrubs, facials, and more, all made from holistic ingredients in your cupboard or local health food store.

These are timeless, natural eternal and internal beauty recipes that have been passed on from our ancestors.

PAYMENT/ EXCHANGE OPTIONS for the Nine Week Journey Into MOTHER:


3 Time Payment Plan of $111.

One Time Payment. $297

The entire 9 week journey is just $297. You can purchase it here.


One Time Payment for the Full Journey PLUS Three 45 Minute Personal Sessions and Runework.

$497

This is the option to have my personal guidance with you along the way. I’ve walked with many womxn across this threshold and I’d be honored to personally hold space for you as you cross over into Mother.

We’ll have three personal calls together at your time of choice:

a personal 45 minute introduction call where we identify where you are on your journey and you can ask me any questions you like. We’ll consult the Runes for your path guidance. The Runes are the ancient Nordic Fortune Telling Stones I’ve been working with as Oracle for most of my life, first, and then deepen into the call. We’ll identify the Maiden traits you’re entering with as we begin the crossing of this threshold.

Around the time of the Underworld calls we’ll do a mid journey check in with you and the Runes to feel how you’re doing in your transition, and what blocks you might be meeting.

At the end of the journey we’ll finish with a one on one closing call to seal the work in and come up with a plan to continue your Mother Work.




THE JOURNEY INCLUDES A GROUP PORTAL WHERE ALL RITUALS AND COURSE NOTES WILL BE POSTED.

THE NEW MAIDEN TO MOTHER JOURNEY 
was crafted for the woman ready to feel real.
For the woman who is tired of feeling like a little girl.
For the woman who is trapped between lives,
the old one, and the one she has been dreaming of. 



THE NEW MAIDEN TO MOTHER JOURNEY IS FOR YOU IF
you feel stuck in the Underworld, and ready to rise. 
If you feel stuck in your bud, but you're longing to bloom. 
If there are repeated patterns of behavior that are keeping you small. 

If you're ready to cultivate your Inner Mother & learn how to Self Mother.
If you're ready to embody healthy feminine leadership
If you're ready to descend to the Goddess and dissent from white supremacist toxic masculine patriarchy.
If you're ready to recognize your True & Inner Beauty. 
If you're ready to work with the spiritual gifts of aging.
If you're ready to answer the call of the Great Mother as her warrior. 


* Quotes from my forthcoming book, The Passage Into Mother.


MENTAL HEALTH DISCLAIMER: I am not a psychiatrist. I’m a writer and teacher who has spent years studying the archetypal passage into Mother through my personal journey and the journeys of others. I am a personal proponent of therapy, but I understand it is a deep societal and financial privilege. This offering is an experience, part story telling and part ritual, and is not to be in place of therapy or mental health caregiving.

 
 

A STORY ABOUT A SONG: TALES FROM MY MAIDENHOOD

Bonnie Raitt - Nobody's Girl Recorded Live: 11/6/1993 - Shoreline Amphitheatre - Mountain View, CAhttp://goo.gl/DUzpUF

Where do I begin, with this thing called Beauty.

I know what I thought it once was. I thought it was something you could see. Now I believe it’s something you feel.

I thought it was one standard given to us by colonizing, patriarchal culture.

I knew it was young.

I knew it was sexual.

And that was all I really knew of it.

“Beauty” ruled my entire Maiden life and has inspired so much of this work of passing into Mother, where I believe we glimpse, for the first time, true beauty.

True Beauty only deepens with age.

Which is why we’ve been redirected from it by media and culture.

What if I had been focusing on it this whole time, instead of my face, I’d been focusing on my power place.

I have worked hard to deeply alchemize beauty into something actually beautiful, instead of what it has been for me, and so many women I know, which is that it’s been cruel and painful. Something we beat ourselves up over, something we try so hard to attain on our face we miss its truth.

I love this from Yeats:

May she be granted beauty, and yet not   
Beauty to make a stranger's eye distraught,   
Or hers before a looking-glass; for such,   
Being made beautiful overmuch,   
Consider beauty a sufficient end,   
Lose natural kindness, and maybe   
The heart-revealing intimacy   
That chooses right, and never find a friend. 

Beauty was painful to me for so long. Since I was a child, beautiful, or pretty, were the words bestowed upon me with the highest praise. And that was the bar set for me, as a little girl. To be beautiful, above all else.

I wondered, deep into my Maiden, because I knew someday I would have a little girl, the way we know things that have no proof, the way women have always known things in the way that some of us have forgotten.

I looked down at my own hands, and in some lights, with less oisture than I shoul dhave in my body, they are old woman’s hands. I rememebr seeing hands like that in my youth and thinking, someone with those hands must have all the answers. They must know everything there is to know about life. They must walk with a steady grace and faith and knowingn that one day, if I live long enough, I will have.

I look at her now and she is devastatingly beautiful My uncle calls it Baby TV. I can just stare at her, lost in her soft skin and pools of blue eyes, and when she leaves me a few mornings a week, I spend the time memorizing her small feet and the socks she was wearing, and I go all the way up, the little warm pants, the pull of the tight cotton onesie over her soft round belly, up to her cheeks and her little gapped teeth, the way her soft hair curls over her ears, the hat she was wearing that day. I memorize her and wrap her in my love for protection that day. It’s a ritual that just boiled up and over in my heart one day, and I seem to do it out of desire those mornings we part, not because I have to or not because I remind myself.

But my, she is beautiful. And will most likely blossom into a beautiful young woman. I type this now with these mildly wrinkled hands, and there is none of the pang of jealousy that when I was in Maiden, I wondered about.

Wield it well, daughter, is what comes to mind. Spend very little time in the mirror. Spend far more time in your heart. True beauty is goodness. And I don’t mean niceness. I mean, being good to yourself and others and those in need and those in crisis, and the earth. Don’t harm anyone if you manage. Don’t let your desires destroy others worlds. Make sure what you want is aligned with the highest good for all. And follow that thing that keeps you up at night. And when your external beauty fades, which it will, because that’s the path, let it go with grace. Your beauty was never on your face. If you live well, from Love, it will remain and it will only grow with age.

She’s fragile like a string of pearls, she’s nobody’s girl. Not even herself. She belonged to everyone and no one. My beauty was external and therefore for the world. Now it is internal, and therefore it is mine.

The New Maiden to Mother Journey Launches March 13 at 5 PM EST and starts at just $111.

 
Linda & Bonnie sing Blowing Away- Lowell George Tribute 1979

Blowing Away. 

A STORY ABOUT A SONG: #2 
Part Two of My Series,
A Story About a Song: Tales from My Maidenhood.

''I'M BLOWING AWAY."


I remember waking up in a friend's East Village apartment on an couch, as I so often did, because it hadn't been possible to make it to the bed the night before.
The bed was far too far.
I remember those blurry nights, vaguely of course, stumbling home and falling face foreword on a couch, tasting upholstery and dried alcohol as I passed out.
I was wearing a tight silk dress borrowed from a friend, and  by morning it had ridden up around my queasy tummy. 

"Aren’t you interviewing Linda Ronstadt this morning?"  I heard my boyfriend ask. 

"Shit," I said, keeping my eyelids, heavy as concrete, closed. 

"I think you have five minutes," he said, in that placid, tired way that you talk to someone who has already let you down so many times there's no further down to go.

He said it in that distant, mildly exasperated way you speak, when someone has broken your trust so many times you've become unbreakable, and really  it's just the shell of you is speaking to them, your soul has pulled out long ago.

This story isn't about this song, but it's exactly like this song, "You Can't Break a Woman." by Lori McKenna. Except he was the woman in this song. And I was the man who broke the trust and killed the hope over and over again until we were both ghosts living in a house haunted by the hope of what we once were.

That's what people who are in the throes of addiction do to the people who love/d them. When we're abusing a substance, we abuse everyone around us.

(We had tried though. He would give me chances and I would kill them with wine and valium. One time we had made up, and he gave me another chance, and we went out that night.
I woke up the next morning with no memory of the night before, and asked, "what happened?"
Three words: "You blew it."
You can imagine how high I held my head back then.)

"Ugh," I said into the couch, "I'm not ready to interview her."

He replied in that unsurprised, monotone voice, "that’s really sad." 

And what he meant  was: "well what do you know, you've fucked up again, and now you're about to fuck up an interview with someone who is one of the reasons you got into rock journalism in the first place."

Maiden to Mother Moment: Had I known then that life was a seasonal process.
That while I had my spring and summer as a music journalist, I was deep into my winter with that once-alive dream, I had no life left for it.
Dreams die and we have to let them, we're as natural as the earth, and we need to learn to midwife our dreams and our relationships  through their seasons. 
I should have stopped when I stopped caring about it, yet I had no idea how to be that in touch with myself.

I thought we were meant to stay one thing forever. I had no dialogue with myself. No relationship to myself except one of burning shame and loathing.

There was no way to check in and ask, what do you want, what do you need, how can I help you? What lights you up now that the dream of journalism is ash?

Like I always did, I shoved that incessant burning shame and house aflame dread to the back of my mind. As usual, life was only about survival and just mustering through the moment.

Bettering myself, healing myself, wasn't a concept I was familiar with at all.

Before I could take two asprin and have a sip of water, my phone rang, it was Linda‘s publicist.

"Are you ready for Miss Ronstadt?"

Real answer: Never been less ready for anything in my life. 
What I actually said: "Sure." 

With not one question prepared and not one song from the new album even listened to, Linda hopped on the phone. This reminds me of a time I had to interview Kanye West for a cover story and also hadn't heard the new album yet. Let's say he wasn't thrilled. *Shudder.*

I summoned all the energy I had in my exhausted hungover body and interviewed Linda Rondstadt on three hours sleep and no preparation. She was wonderful and giving and elegant and kind and I plodded through some off the cuff questions like I was a tired old donkey in uphill mud. 

At the end I told her how much my late mother had loved and her how we'd grown up listening to her and how much those memories meant to me, but the sentiment had fallen as flat as the interview, which of course had been terrible, and the piece was so bad it never ran so it was a waste of my idol's time.

That morning didn't end there. "Are you going to shower before your interview?" he asked me. 

I had an in person interview for SPIN magazine that day. It was actually the entire reason why we were in New York City. I pulled on some black pants and a wrinkled blouse. I didn't say anything at first. Often back then I was waiting for a trap door to open so I could just disappear. 
And again, there was that flat, deeply unimpressed voice from the corner, from that man I had long stopped being able to look in the eyes.

"Don’t you want to shower?" he asked me again.

"I don't have time,"  I said, pulling on some black boots with sludgy bar stains on them.

And then an exhausted, barely holding it together sigh came from him.

"If you’re not even showering for an interview we flew here solely to do, what are you even doing?"
And then of course, naturally, he asked me,

"What are we even doing?" 

"I don’t know," I said.
"I don't know what I'm doing." 
I didn't know my self.
How could I know what I was doing?

The answer was, like the song above, I was blowing away. 
Nothing held me together. 

I was unrooted. There was no center. I was sourced externally, from fleeting moments of validation, which had all but dried up. There was just one time I had felt God. (Love. Goddess. Source. Something BIGGER.) The night my mother died when I was a teenager. I felt held by some unseen force of Love. But after that. Lost. Flailing, drowning. Desperately hoping someone was going to save me. Looking for Mother, for unconditional love- in all the wrong places.

Never knowing there was a Mother in me. 

In the transition from Maiden to Mother, we find our center. 
We find what Jamie Sams calls "Our Power Place."
We find our inner mother.
We find our calm seat in the chaotic world.
We get a clear sense of who we are, what we're capable of. 
When tough things happen, we learn that we can and then we do, handle them. (Instead of hiding under the bed from them, or begging others to fight our battles).

I think so often of how the word M-other holds that word "Other", how it enfolds the Other inside of it. 

We have space for the other. We are safe for the Other. 
That's not something you can say, about Wounded Maidenhood, where often we're the very Hurricane tearing down everything and everyone around her. 
In Healthy Mother, we're the shelter for ourselves and others. 


How am I handling this?
When I think of the word "handling," I think of my own hands, holding someone or something, as Mother.

I hold people and things very differently now, in Mother. 

I am handling things gently, but with strength.
I am handling things peacefully, but with power.
I am handling things calmly, but with determination.
I am handling things now.
And I am handling them with grace,
because I move from, I am held by, that unseen place
with in me. 

P.S. I did not get that job at SPIN magazine, just in case you were on the edge of your seat about that one. 

The NEW MAIDEN TO MOTHER JOURNEY LAUNCHES WEDNESDAY MARCH 13, 2019 at 5 PM EST. 

A Story About a Song: “Just Give Me Time,” by Okkervil RIVER

We had a golden convertible Saab. It was old, used, with cracked gray leather seats, but it was a convertible, and we lived in California, and we had two dogs, and I was madly in love with him, and from the outside, you might have thought we were living the dream.

But on the inside of that dream was icky decay, one of us was spiritually dying, and she didn't know what to do about it, and she was clinging to the other for dear life, and he had to save her again and again and he was getting pretty fucking tired of it.

Ok so I was she and he was he. And one night he called from tour and said he didn't know if he wanted to come home to me. And he had called me on my cell phone and I was only a mile from our house, but I couldn't make it home because I couldn't breathe. And part of that was because I was in between heavy high doses of valium, and that had started to make me breathless, short of breath, until I took another one to slow my breathing down to just above corpse level.

So I turned into a little deserted gas station, and I just sat there, heaving for breath while I fumbled through my cheap cluttered purse for my orange plastic prescription bottle that was dangerously close to empty, which means soon I'd have to come up with a lie to my doctor about losing some or spilling some, another lie to cover up that I was taking far more than I was already over prescribed.

I don't know where I was coming home from, probably a bar, and possibly I had had cold white wine alone, and I probably had that third one you should never have, the one that makes a "fine" night of drinking a bad one, one you regret, and the sugar keeps you up in the middle of the night thinking about everything that's wrong with you or that can and will go wrong.

So I took another valium and the song that had started to play on the CD player was one of the bands we loved together, ten or eleven some years ago now, called Okkervill River. And the song was called "Just Give Me Time," which of course, is what he had asked for before he hung up.

I was always threatening back then, to want to die without him, that I couldn't live with out him. I was positively hysterical all the time. I would go from heavily sedated to hysterical back to heavily sedated or black out drunk. And I was drowning and this poor man kept trying to swim us both to shore but the ocean is rough enough for one person, let alone someone carrying a nearly dead weight.

And he had said, "I don't know Sarah, maybe it's just how I feel tonight. I'm not sure. Just give me time."

And so I sat there in that empty parking lot just a mile away from our home, but I couldn't drive there until I found some hope or at least until some of the pain got sedated and I so I waited. Just listening to the lead singer singing so sweetly and sadly and calmly as if he was talking someone off of a roof, someone he loved but was tired of loving because loving always meant saving.

Maybe everything would be okay. If I just gave him time.

And it turned out, that time it was "ok." We put a bandaid on a gaping festering wound and limped our way through another seven months or so of a failing love and eventually, he'd had enough time and he knew he could no longer be mine.

And I didn't know, after that, how to swim alone. So I sunk all the way to the bottom of the ocean, to the bottom of the world, a bottle of red wine in one hand, valium in the other. Until one day I woke up on a new and distant shore and slowly learned to walk and then slowly learned to live again, not leaning on someone else, but on a deep internal strength, which would revive me, again and again.

By the way, the New Maiden to Mother Journey is here. And it launches Wednesday, March 13th.