Archive for the ‘Heroine’s Journey’ 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!


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?


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.



April 24, 2010

I am participating in a six month Archetypal Journey of Twelve Wise Women – well maybe 11 wise women and me!

Our work for tomorrow is coniunctio… and I haven’t come up with my participatory piece yet. But something that is niggling me is the colors – red, white, black.

Maybe because I just worked with making intuition dolls and we talked about Vasilisa and her red boots, her black skirt, and her white apron. And there is also the imagery of the three horsemen – red, black, white, and there is also something with alchemy – black – to white – to red – to gold – and the words negredo, albedo, and  rubedo – and how the work of mining the unconscious, working with shadow, brings up gold from our depths and our own darkness once brought to the light of consciousness.

Any ideas? references? Stories? that might help me go to the next place with this?

And in an interesting synchronicity – I have recently been in contact with two men who participated in a gender conversation last spring. First women sat in a circle and spoke about what it means and feels like to be a woman in our culture and the men formed a protective container in a circle around us, and then the women switched with the men, and we had the rare chance to peek into the inner world of the wounded masculine. That experience rocked my world – and a year later – the conversation continues with these two Sacred Warrior men.

For quite some time I have believed that women have done enough work to come to the marriage of the Sacred Masculine and the Divine Feminine – but men haven’t been able to have the same space to do this work – and we as women are somehow acting as gatekeepers in a way that doesn’t allow this work.

The goddess is alive and afoot and present… and looking for her mature, masculine partner… and he isn’t here yet. And it isn’t because men don’t yearn to do the work – I believe they do… It is because our culture socializes boys and men into narrow realms of expression.

James Hollis has a wonderful passage in his book Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life about women and men.

Women are usually far more emotionally differentiated  – that is, they
have a much keener awareness of their inner reality, have a range of
friends who support their process of growth, and have already
undertaken a wider range of personal exploration.  Today’s woman
remembers a grandmother who suffered the horror of gender
discrimination and had few professional choices.  Her mother was
caught in a changing world, whipsawed between motherhood and
unprecedented opportunities for career.  Today’s younger woman sees
models all around her, and is just as likely to define herself through
her work as her grandmother did through her homemaking.  But at least
she has a choice today.  Many choose to do both, and most struggle
heroically to balance the world of domestic and professional
responsibilities.  And often without an understanding, and supportive

At the same time, in speaking to women’s groups, I have suggested that
women look at men this way: if they took away their own network of
intimate friends, those with whom they share their personal journey,
removed their sense of instinctual guidance, concluded that they were
almost wholly alone in the world, and understood that they would be
defined only by standards of productivity external to them, they would
then know the inner state of the average man.  They are horrified at
the notion. <snip>

Addendum from:

Title: Initiation and Meaning in the Tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Author(s): N. J. Girardot
Source: The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 90, No. 357 (Jul. – Sep., 1977), pp. 274-300
Publisher(s): American Folklore Society

During mid-winter the Queen wishes for a child “white as snow, red as blood, black as wood.”


From a comparative perspective, the color symbolism in some primitive situations involves the idea of a union
of the red (menstrual blood) and white (semen) through the agency of the black (the ritual “death” involved in the initiation and marriage union).

I find this fascinating as I am also working through this tale in the Dangerous Old Woman series right now… Guess this is really working me? yes?


The search continues

April 22, 2010

I know there is no perfect placement site for this next step in my journey. I know this – I really do! And yet, it seems like I am Goldilocks – too hard, too soft and haven’t found just right.

I get all excited about a site – and then they have no space! Or I get all excited about a site, and they turn me down! Or I get all excited about a site, but the work they presented in the initial interview morphs into something that I fear would be stultifying and or/soul sucking when it comes time to sign on the bottom line.

I am feeding my intuition – little bits of this and that – cuttings of fresh herbs from the garden, tender shoots of the earliest asparagus, lightly steamed kale, and even chocolate! Feeding, tending, listening to the whisper and waiting so PaTIenTlY.

See how paTIenT I am? And yet I know – a site will come – and I will know it is the right fit… and if it isn’t – we only have to learn together for nine hundred hours. And in that time, I will find a way to hone this art.

How is it for you when you are in these betwixt and between times? How do you maintain faith and trust the process and let things unfold without too much fussing?


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.