this promises to be full of garble. ramble and general unedited rubbish. i am on the verge of a breakout…not a breakthrough, a breakout. last winter solstice i asked. i asked for a year of courage. not the brassy giant courage of a warrior, but the gentle quiet courage of a hummingbird. the courage to follow my heart. in the first part of this year, im not sure i did much courage. im still looking for examples. but now, right now in these last weeks, i have been offered…..well, options.
moments to follow my heart where it has been leading me these last three years. and im struck. with fear, and doubt, and self-loathing for all i am not. for all the things i don’t know and am afraid to find out. i fear you telling me. i fear falling on my face. i fear disappointing people i deeply admire. i fear most of all, that i will disappoint myself. but the heart is fierce. even one as sheltered as mine has been these last three years.
i have been deeply entrenched in the mothering of small children for well, four years counting pregnancy. not that i am complaining, just stating facts. as a self-appointed stay at home mother, i have become a bit….isolated. lonely. craving connection on every level. clamping down on those i did see, that gave me a comfortable place to be my whole messy mama self. the energy and effort involved in taking the girls out, for the 2 hours they might collectively last, is hard for me. i know there are mamas who are super active, but i prefer my little nest. it is cozy and full of bright colors and all the things i know and do well….for the most part. but it makes the idea of putting myself out there again, daunting.
i started the year with ideas a plenty. plans and schemes to get HM off the ground and running. what a perfect idea, straight from the comfort of my nest i could do all the things i wanted, without really taking a risk. then something happened. i got bored. my life became full of crawling and chasing and the cleanest wettest desert winter i have yet to experience. i had this realization that this place wasn’t quite enough. that putting it out to the ethernets in a sort of annonymous way wasn’t serving my soul. it certainly wasn’t courageous. but i had no idea what the crap i was supposed to do. learning to be social again is harder than i anticipated. it’s like a muscle really, especially for a natural introvert.
what i needed was a bridge. and a smiling face at the other side. just last night i was shown just such a bridge. i was asked to lead some classes about herbs for beginners at a local midwife’s office. me. the newbie novice herbmama explorer. a teacher??? who the hell am i to do such a thing. she actually asked me a few days ago, and i took my time deciding. ter.i.fied.
and i left the office last night shaking, my tummy doing turns all night. feelings of serious anxiety plagued me as i thought, have i been inauthentic about what i know? have i made myself out to be more than i am? what does she see that i do not? and a whole host of others….but today, after i have had a chance to process it a bit and listen to a few wise women friends, i realized this was exactly what i had asked for. i wasn’t going to be courageous on my own. it’s been too long. and really, that’s not what corriagio was about. that’s never what mama borage was trying to tell me on all those journeys.
Brene Brown talks about courage vs bravery and says courage is to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart. To lead with it rather than follow it. To have the courage to be imperfect. A state of fully embraced vulnerability. That those who feel the least alone achieve connection as a result of authenticity. An authenticity that shows you are willing to let go of who think you should be in order to be who you are.
I am not an herbalist. I am an herbmama. I don’t know how to fix your diabetes. But i do know how to fix your bad day with a perfect glass of prickly pear tea. I don’t know the first thing about herbs for kidney stones, but i do know how to make a mean juniper pot roast. I don’t know why you can’t get rid of that acne at 35, but i can make you feel like a goddess again with a calendula facial. i love herbs. the plants speak my language. they sway in the wind to the dances of my own heart. and as scared as i am about this new endeavor, i know that if i lead with my heart, i’ll make a connection. and that after all, is exactly what i asked for.