I once pushed myself so hard that I collapsed and almost didn’t get up again.
But instead, I got sick, very sick. Sick enough to spend the majority of three years in bed. Sick enough that I and no one else knew how to get me better.
In the first few years of my experience with this illness, I went to dozens of doctors, naturopaths, shamans, healers, energy workers and, really, anyone who I thought might be able to help me regain my health.
The sickness I had, had started with a stomach infection I contracted in Mexico. This infection caused my body to develop two long-term conditions: chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia.
Many doctors and specialists told me that there wasn’t a cure for what I had. They said I would have to learn to live with the chronic, radiating pain and the exhaustion that kept me in bed most days.
I was told this at the age of 29.
Because I have never been one to adhere to given labels, receiving a diagnosis like this was not an option.
After the doctors gave up trying to help me, I realized it was up to me to figure out how to help myself. I embarked on a daily, hourly and minute-by-minute inner and outer journey to discover what it would take to heal myself.
This was the most serious souls searching I had ever done.
One of the things I discovered was that something was missing from my life. I was missing some force and power. Because of this, I was never replenishing.
I was pushing but I was never allowing myself to receive.
Through detective work into my own psyche, I learned that in order to receive, I had to be soft and open enough to allow others and the world to support me. Receiving was about accepting nourishment and creating of something new. It was about the nature of the feminine.
I was not comfortable with being this way at all.
I had been running hard, pushing fast and striving into the future when I got sick. In living this forward motion, I had been turning away from a natural power that I didn’t understand. I thought I needed to grab strength outside of myself and couldn’t imagine that power could actually be created within.
When I looked at our world I saw that I was not the only one who was missing this natural power—it was absent from the scriptures of our culture too.
The feminine was missing and she was calling.
I realized that I had been ignoring one half of myself completely. Growing up in North America, I had cultivated my masculine side. It was the focus of how I was taught to get things done.
“Push through it. Strive for it. Work hard.”
How could I be well, with only one piece of my whole?
We learned to conceal the feminine long ago, because her strength had begun to frighten us. It threatened people so much that we had started to turn on our goddesses, lovers, sisters, mothers and healers with violence and in fear.
The feminine was hidden from the world at that time, for good reason.
I decided to begin reveling the goddess to myself again—she’d become, over the centuries one of our societies biggest secrets.
So, I tried to embrace what I knew of the feminine—to be honest, it was hard to recall.
I tried to become softer and more receptive and allow things to support me. In this moment I noticed the chair I was sitting in was propping me up and that the house I was inside was sheltering me.
I tried to be less of an individual and more a part of the collective, because this was a part of the feminine way. I began thinking of my interactions with people and the world as collaborations rather than something I needed to lead.
I started wearing red lipstick and more dresses.
As I made these changes, something happened in me. I uncovered a flame in my core that began to grow. As I received more than I pushed away, I felt a solidness that I hadn’t known before.
A certainty was coming from my softening and my health got a little better too.
But it wasn’t magic. It was a lot of hard work to completely change the way I moved in the world. I knew, that it was only a beginning.
I discovered the feminine in my longing for creation. So I created as much as I could, whenever I could, with the energy that I had. This mostly meant writing, horizontally from my bed. It, nonetheless, fanned a new flame.
I also decided that the feminine is about intimacy, so I began touching my body, moving it and shaking it whenever possible, even though it still hurt like hell to do it.
I was relearning balance.
I was beginning to replenish.
We used to live the feminine in every cell of our bodies. We used to make temples, ceremonies and daily offerings to her greatness.
It was time to bring my feminine out of hiding. By scattering her to the wind, I had sacrificed my health and my wholeness.
I saw that the world had done this too.
So I started to pray:
“Let me be full. Let me be so full of the feminine that I are bursting. Then, let me become more full, even still. “
It was the tender and fierce light of creation that I needed to illuminate my sky.
I decided then, that I would let the feminine fill up my bucket, my heart and soul.
I wanted to get so full again that I was bursting.
I had to become what we had lost centuries ago. I had to become the medicine woman, the priestess, the healer, the lover, the dancer and the great creator.
This was how I would heal after the doctors had given up trying.
“Let me be bold. Let me be big and let us be so full that I am bursting.”
Whole and overflowing is what I wanted back.
And so the return of my feminine began. She had called because she was the one with the capacity to replenish me.
I have an inkling, she is the one with the capacity to replenish us all.
Author: Sarah Norrad
Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock