Archive for the ‘Crones’ Category


An early graduation present!

December 19, 2010

So in the midst of all the craziness of our lives… my husband was invited to San Francisco to give a talk. I was so worried it would interfere with my graduation… but everyone was accommodating. Thank you!

You see the last time I “walked” for one of my degrees was 1976!

I now have a BS, MS, MA and EdS and it is for this degree that I was willing to participate in a public ritual – not of my design!

And it was wonderful! Both the trip before and the experience of being hooded for this accomplishment.

Feeling so very grateful as we wax towards the winter solstice!



December 18, 2010

Have I told you lately that I am content!?!?!?!? Ecstatic even????

Oh my goodness what a ride this last nearly four years has been… and now after having been caught in the undertow, the spin cycle, and the roller coaster – I am being catapulted out the other side…and I am here to tell you with absolute certainty and joy that it was worth every moment of suffering and difficulty and ecstasy and joy!


Have I mentioned lately how ab*soul*utley enchanted I am?

Well… I am!



December 11, 2010

Tomorrow is the third Sunday of Advent and I should be packing for a trip that I am taking, but instead I am sitting still, very still and contemplating and watching, and looking out the window and drinking tea. There is a stillness inside me that is bottomless.

Several times over the past months, someone has said that sitting with me is very calming. I have noticed that my immediate internal reaction to that is that I am a whirling dervish of energy, excitement, movement, study, intensity, curiosity… I am movement.

And yet I am also stillness. Within me is a stillness and it is without measure.





Equanimity and Equinoxes

September 28, 2010

What a wonderful few months it has been. Each day I greet the sun as she rises over the ridge that is blue and then in the evening, I chase the sun as she sets in the distant mountains. Some mornings the moon is with me reminding me of the night and some evenings the moon follows me safely home. All of this is the up side of my new position.


8000 miles on the car in four months…

and in December I graduate… no degree, no higher learning experience has ever meant as much as this means to me.

I am so very, very, very, grateful… filled up with gratitude.

Midlife ROCKS!

And you- how is the Middle Passage treating you?


Feasting on new ideas

May 20, 2010

In 2005, I spent a solid nine months commuting – 45 minutes up the interstate and 45 minutes down the interstate. During that time, I listened to all twelve sessions of the two volume Theatre of the Imagination. As I remember, each tape was about 45 minutes a side or maybe that isn’t how it was, but I do know that it took time, lots of time, and the changes of the moon cycles and the earth cycles for me to digest, percolate, and absorb the richness of the feast I experienced through those teaching tales – truly it was Story as Medicine. I have listened to parts of TOI since then – but it has never had the deep feel it had when I spent that time in deep contemplation.

And now, five years later, I am once again about to begin a period of commuting…

Up and over the Blue Ridge and over to the Piedmont several times a week, ninety minutes each way from now until December. I have mixed feelings about spending my life energy in a car. Yet the opportunity calls me and the opportunity is on the other side of the mountain.

When I was younger, it was fairly easy for me to make a decision. I had a better sense of “choose this” and if you don’t like it choose something else. And now… I still believe that… but there is a subtlety that makes choosing more difficult and if I am honest, there is a sense of being over half a century on this earth that shifts things for me. Time moves more slowly now and more quickly both.

The exuberant energy that carried me to my middle passage visit to the Swamplands, slowed and deepened into two four year cycles of depth work. And as I come out of the second cycle of depth work, I am moving more slowly and deliberately weighing things differently now. So the decision to commute was a difficult one to choose.

Part of what made me choose this is that I have just had two six week sessions with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes. Her Mother Night series at SoundsTrue and following that the first of her epic opus The Dangerous Old Woman. I now have twelve sessions that are each about two hours long. A FEAST of heroic proportions. And I find that I can’t sit still and listen to the sessions. Yet… with a commute… with hours on the road each day… yes… that was part of what shifted the balance into choosing the distant opportunity.

So now, after a week of rain, the sun is out – metaphorically and literally – and the garden is calling me.

And you? What is your process for decision making? and has it changed as you age?


Under her fullness

April 28, 2010

Last night, around 10:00 PM, as I walked out of the building and crossed the Quad, there she was, just climbing over the buildings and casting moonshadows over all of us – the students rushing to and fro, the trees who have stood many winters, the kissing rock, all of us bathed in her cool light. It was magical.

The search is ongoing and things pop up and things disappear and opportunities materialize and connections are made, and I am trying as much as possible to embrace the mystery, the unknown, to trust that fate and destiny will form a divine union and deliver me to the exact place where I am meant to practice my emerging craft. The waiting is hard. I should have some closure from a couple of positions this Friday.

And I am giving myself permission, if the right placement does not appear to take the summer OFF!

That sounds appealing, but it delays a lot of other things and I am ready to close this chapter of my life and move on…

I got home late last night, so missed the first part of the Dangerous Old Woman gathering, but I think she told the tale that I first heard from Angeles Arrien about the African Woman, somehow I think I heard it as the Nubian woman? I searched and searched for that and was able to trace it back to Helen Luke (who I just found out was a partner in analytical practice with Robert A. Johnson!). I am just beginning my explorations of Helen’s work – and am fascinated with her generativity – writing an autobiography at 70! Helen received the story directly from Sir Laurens van der Post and I am eager to hear what magic dr. e. has worked into the story.

What teaching stories are you working with right now? in your own life? or with others?

I love this synchronicity – this is the next story that I had chosen to work with and just started telling it again and scheming and dreaming about an Expressive Arts activity around women making necklaces and instead of going into the forest to encounter the Baba Yaga, they go down into the river to encounter the ancient woman and lick her sores and receive her gift.


Second part of interview with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes

April 19, 2010

I would like to start with a clarification. I am not writing as Dr. E, Clarissa, CPE, or Dr. Pinkola Estes! I write as myself – an emerging crone (who has yet to cross the crone line). Although I aspire to become a crone, there is still much learning and living and wisdom ahead of me before I reach that place in my life.

I have been musing that there needs to be an intermediate stage in the triple form of maiden, mother, crone – that as women as living longer and as we (well maybe it is just me!) find it harder to gather the true wisdom and generativity necessary to cross the crone line, that perhaps we need a stage after mother and before crone. And the mother stage I refer to isn’t the birthing of children from our wombs – many of us either chose to not take that path, or that path was not available to us for one reason or another – but that mother stage is when we are past the innocence of the maiden, and living our creativity from our ovarios – and out into the world of matter. I feel like I am leaving that stage – and yet am not yet in the crone stage yet.

What do you think this stage is? This in between time?

And here is the second part of the interview with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes and Tami Simon from

Wild and wonderful blessings on you and yours.