Process, Uncategorized

The Emotional Journey

Victimhood exploded into my consciousness today as I wondered what that really meant for so many of us. Victimhood has become a dirty word. So much of what we are told to be outraged about is in fact inconvenient, uncomfortable and honestly best left under the carpet for most people. We just don’t talk about it. About our weaknesses about our fears. Nor do we take the real-time to identify their origins. It’s an ever-ongoing journey the journey back to ourselves. Most of our journeys start with trauma, whether it’s garden variety childhood trauma or something a little more dramatic. Trauma lies at the root of our emotional journey. Of course, not everyone might believe that, for me it’s certainly a larger part of my truth. Once we get to a certain point in our own lives we really have no other option than to take responsibility for our journey. We have to take responsibility for our choices and we have to stand in our own sovereignty when reaping the consequences of those actions. So many of us walk the tightrope of boundaries trying to figure out what is just the right amount of give and take. For me personally, I always lookout for the best in people and now as I get older I have truly given deep thought to what is the most compassionate thing I can do for me. That seeing the best in people and wanting what’s best for them is not necessarily what is best for me. That in a world where you could be anything being kind isn’t always helpful. I’ve been mulling all of this over for months now. All the flawed belief systems that I have been running my life on. Unconditional love, sacrificial love, guilt, kindness, compassion and trust (I was raised a Catholic after all). Of course they are great values to have however what I have learned is that I have to put myself at the center of that circle. Even more recently what I have learned is that in my early twenties I was actually doing a lot better than I thought. More than this, the world is a lot more fucked than I thought and even more interestingly the people that are trying to save ‘the world’ are the most fucked of us all. Like seriously I’ve figured out a lot and although in my fortieth year I think I might have bordered on becoming a bit more conservative I fully appreciate that now more than ever I’m more radical than I ever thought. More than this I am frustrated, bored and quite frankly over it. Over what has been dished out and served up like dog vomit for us all to willfully eat. The terrible thing is that nobody actually knows any better. Like seriously unless you are invested in deep listening. You are not even close to discovering or unleashing the answers to the world’s problems. The world is at a loss.

Wow. It really is emotional. What else did you expect when you were catapulted into a human life that is bookended by birth and death? Yes, the emotional journey is about everything in the middle from dropping your first ice-cream to signing off on your will. It’s intense in here, this human life.

It’s certainly not what we are sold from the family films to the bible or even something a little edgier. It is really clear that most of the narratives are false. Well at least from my perspective? Or are they? You see I’ve been sitting at the centre of the emotional journey for a while now. I’ve been alive for a while now and like most of you I didn’t start out with anybody talking to me about how I feel. How I should feel or indeed if any of my feelings were ok? From joy to dismay most of my feelings by most of the people I have met on this journey through life have been dismissed, overlooked, ridiculed, mocked, weaponised and ignored. As a result, I have suppressed, repressed and ignored my feels and along with it any sense fo self. To be clear I here I am only talking about my feelings here. I amn’t even delving into the more resonable realm of thought. When it comes to human conversation orginal thought can be treacherous if you dare to have and imagination.

You see there’s a lot of talk about the heroes journey about the predictive steps that you might take to self-redemption. The real kicker is that you have to lose everything to gain something and go to where the fear is. I know it sounds straight forward. However it really isn’t the case. Especially when we are hiding from our own fear. Have you ever hidden from you own fear? To be honest the best label that I have for that is anxiety. The truth is it is super difficult to step into your own power especially when everyone is telling you not to. You might find it super confusing to discover that many people don’t want that for you, especially when you are living a life with deep authenticity. You see it highlights all the things that other people are not and they don’t like that. It’s actually quite a mission to turn off the exterior chatter that dictates your process in your head. More than this detach from it completely. There are so many people who are willing to hold you back from your dreams, question your curiosity and even undermine your moral commitment.

In a world where many of us are engaged with the world through the filter of screens controlled by an algorithm, now more than ever it entirely possible to control what you witness. Scary on one side of things and an incredible opportunity on the other. Of course, I am not a sunshine and roses kind of girl. I am ultimately someone deeply aware of the thorns. Although we do have to face our fears we don’t have to stay witness to human tragedy and especially not our own.

It’s a problem. It’s a problem that our feelings aren’t considered valid. The real challenge that I present in this article is how do we present emotions as both necessary and valid? How do we get on the emotional journey? More than this how do we get anybody to share the emotional ride. I suppose at this point we might want to ask is what is the first emotion that we felt can we remeber? Do we know how we felt as a child? Do we know how we feel. For many of us this is the revelation that takes us onto the emotional journey as an adult. It’s recognising the way we feel now is often related to how we felt in the past. That often our emotional journeys as adults is the recovery of the emotional journey of our pasts. That understanding the emotional journey of the past is absolutely key to unlocking the emotional journey that we desire in the future. Often the emotional journey doesn’s always start well. It’s sometimes all about all the feelings that we don’t want, that we are emmersed in, that we can’t seem to get out of. It’s the point at which that we can no longer stand the ‘negative’ emotions that we feel that creates a trajectory of radical change.

Of course it isn’t easy stepping out on to the open road with all you vulnerabilty on view after all isn’t that what unifoms were for? If we all dress the same, act the same, speak the same, think the same , then how could anythign possibly go wrong? You are not the control sample of the universe. We are not the play thing of corporations and institutions. We have feelings, we have emotions and we are entited to have our thoughts, feeling and emotions respected. It’s a no brainer. Literally stop thinking about it and start doing the work.

More than this the emotional journey is not linear. Somehow in this wack world we are all told that we have to continually prove ourselves. To be honest I wonder sometimes what it would be like to coast for a while. Yet somehow that doesn’t seem to be allowed. We have to keep pushing for ever greater success and ever greater emotional upgrade. What if you just put either one of those two things down for a second. In recent years it’s become ever more clear that the work never ends. That our evolving emotional landscape is the journey. That we as individuals are there for all our emotional ups and down and unexpectd sideswerves. I feel like I am, of course, pointing out the obvious. Yet truly in a world where the term ‘Mental Health Crisis’ is banded about like a ping pong ball we have to start connecting the dots. As a species we are not well. As a species our mental and emotional health are impacting our lives, familes and communities. Our mental health is impacting the planet. What are the deep seated emotions that are stopping you from doing the right thing? What is stopping you from addressing this ‘Mental Health Crisis’? Where and how is poor mental health affecting you? Is this the intersection at which to start the conscious emotional journey.

This article was written by a dyslexic with a punk attitude to accompany the Feral Systemic Healing Circle

Process, Uncategorized

The System

I get asked all the time what do you mean by ‘The System’? If I was a full-blown academic maybe I would have found a succinct way to conceptually replicate exactly what the system is? Maybe I’d be able to neatly package the systemic? In the most accessible version, it’s all the false realities that we are ‘forced’ to live with. It’s that thing we might collectively call bullshit. It’s all the things that we were born into that we didn’t consent to. All the things that we appear to have inherited as a result of human attachment to time and form. It’s all the systems that have been slowly fucking us collectively since the industrial revolution that are being caught out by the all-encompassing reality of climate change. These are the broad strokes of understanding the system.

It’s the nationalism you ascribe to cause you were taught it in the country you were born into. It’s the linear thinking that you embody because it both functional, productive and conducive to the capitalist system you were expected to exist in. It’s both the price and cost of religion, that believes that redemption is monetary. It’s money and the faulty economics of exchange that capitalism is based on. It’s the sickness system that you are paying to die into due to the industrialisation of food production. It’s the nutrient-poor land that we’ve been poisoning to eat. It the claustrophobic apartment you call home with no outdoor space. It’s the air you dare to breathe and the fresh clean live water that you cannot source to drink. That is The System.

You see it is often said that the only thing that survives us is love as and as an Art Historian what I know for sure is that objects and structures both the physical and the imagined can survive us too, usually with a far deeper sense of everyday meaning. Ideas can survive us. Yet for some reason we get all caught up on this love business. That is not to say that love doesn’t survive us. However what is that you really remember of your great great grandparents? You see more and more it becomes ever clearer in my reality that there is a great rouse going on. That somehow despite all the evidence. (That at this point might include the evidence submitted for Trump’s impeachment) We seem to believe that the society in which we live is built on higher ideals; that of truth, love, justice and honesty. It simply isn’t true. The age-old narrative of good vs evil is still alive and well with us today and we would be fools to believe that it isn’t an ever-present reality. Yet we do. Even though it tells us in all the great stories old and new that the corruption of power is central to the human narrative.

Conspiracy theories are abounding constantly asking us to question our truth. Yet so many of us don’t want to look at what is right in front of us. From the clothes, we wear to the food we buy and the media we consume. What is true for us? What is acceptable for us? Right now we live in a world of deep polarisation. Yet it has always been this way. The haves and the have nots. Have you noticed that we have one month of the year allotted (By fucking who?) to black history? That means black history only matters one 12th of the time. If you don’t understand whiteness then there is your queue. How is it the black history only matters one 12th of the time? It’s not that you are necessarily being lied to. It is that your narrative is being controlled. You are being told who you are and what to believe to serve an agenda. An agenda that is highly vested in maintaining the status quo and controlling power.

The narrative is off. It isn’t about them out there. It is about us in here. What is going on in your soul? What do you want to see for yourself and your family? Your life span? How is that rolling out in your life? And if not why not? Also, how is your agenda impacting others? Where are you holding onto control? It is often said that we live in an abundant world and that love is the most important thing, or indeed the highest value. If that’s true why are you scared? What are you scared of? If love is running the world why hasn’t everybody got enough to eat, clean drink water and a safe place to eat? For me when it comes to these big question we simply have to look to the system. If we were free to live then why would any of this be an issue? You see understanding, recognising the system is all about acknowledging all the ways that you aren’t free. That on day to day basis we come up against barriers that prevent us from living the lives we are capable of as a result of somebody else’s need for control. Who gave them the control and why? It asks us to question ourselves our way of life.

You can’t buy your way out of the system. You can give your way out of it. If you sitting in a shit whole or even better a shit stom you’ve been planted and like a tree you alone get to decide how you are going to weather the storm .

This article accompanies the Trauma Wise Circle.

*This article was written by a dyslexic with a punk attitude.

Process, Uncategorized

Feral

I’m fairly confident that I have not written about this before. I’ve got no idea why, given that its’ been burning though my brain as an idea ever since forever ago. Like alot of the ideas I have. Anyways I’m really excited about this one. Let me say this very clearly, I am feral. I don’t belong in the system and my natural environment has been destroyed and well it’s left me somewaht untameable. That might be how you youd describe me if I was an animal, and then of course I am. Human’s are animals, we certainly seem to follow our worst impulses a lot of the time (that will be the trauma). And yes most of live very far outside the confines of our natural envirnoment, most of us don’t even have access to a natural water source these days, especially if we live in cities. We are forced to drink chlorine for our own good.

You see I got a bit pissed of with all these re-wilding wild women posts, projects and groups that seemed to need a matching head dress to go with you mass produced slave labour arm bands in order to feel free. What true wild human have you met that has a warddrobe of accesories that are weather essentials? Anyways I should probably stay quiet here. My bad attitude hardwire is being to shine through after a rather intesne week. That’s my problem that is why I might describe my self as feral. I don’t fit into the system, in fact it terrifies me that so many people do. I’m literally lost as to how people keep together such a distinct and fuck-up socital lie. Except of course for paychecks. That’s how. Would anybody like to talk abour corruption? We are courrupt. Remember you can’t eat money? Universal enslavement has been a thing for a while now. As I’m sure any Marx theorist will tell you. So yeah I called bullshit on the system a long time ago. I didnt’ like it going in and I’ve broken the heels of all the pretty shoes I have doing the best I can to stay out. In fact I’ve nearly destroyed myself to be non-complict in the system’s anti-human ways. So yes fuck the system. Fuck the system hard.

It’s not very productive though is it? So I’ll internalise capitalism and keep on writing. So if you are disruptor an interested in Personal Activism and Systemic Healing you can sign up to join the Feral Systemic Healing Circle which convenes on or around every new moon of 2021.

If you have enjoyed reading this article you can donate here or check out my shop for services.

Uncategorized

Activists

Actually piss me off most days even though I am one. I look straight in to the heart of most activists and invisibly ask ‘tell me about your trauma?’ Tell me about your dysfunctional family? Tell me all about all about all the ways you feel unseen, unheard, dismissed,  disregarded, ignored? Tell me, tell me, tell me? Then talk to me some more? Tell me about the Palm Oil in Borneo? Tell me about the amputees in Gabon? Tell me about the child cancer victims that can’t get treatment? Tell me about the old lonely people locked in their houses? Tell me about the mental health patients that are so isolated by the system they get madder? Tell me about all the people that fall through the cracks? Tell me about the alcoholic single mother who was abused as child? Tell me about the neglected child with the alcoholic mother? Tell me how vulnerable children get abused in state care? Tell me about the still born babies that never got held? Tell me about all the dead babies in unmarked graves? Tell me of all the babies that were never given names? Then tell me of the people that die alone with no family? Tell me of the abused women to frightened to speak? Tell me about coercive control? Tell me about the impacts of prostate cancer? Tell me how processed food is killing us? Tell me about the benefits of a vegan diet? Tell me about animal rights? Tell me why all beings are sentient? Tell me about the indigenous population about to lose all their land, again? Tell me about the corrupt governments? Tell me how Justin Treudow is a sexy fraud? Tell me about propaganda? Tell me how Trump is a national hero? Tell how Trump is a facist? Tell me that Boris is alright? Tell me why you love The Union Jack? Tell me about the increasing rate of childhood obesity? Tell me about the starving children? Tell me about the starving children in the UK? Tell me about your Uncle that died of kidney failure? Tell me about the failing NHS? Tell me how the NHS saved your life? Tell me how you go through cancer? Tell me about the importance of indigenous knowledge systems? Tell me about your dying language? Tell me about what it feels like to be a black woman in a “white country”? Tell me what it’s like to be a black woman in South Africa? Tell me what it’s like to be a black woman immigrant in any country? Tell me what it feels like to not speak your own language? Tell me what it feels like to be scared of your own skin? Tell me what it’s like to be racialised by your hair? Tell me what it is to hate your father? Tell me what it is to have survived you husband? Tell me what is it to be ignored, beaten and brutalised by the police? Tell me of your torture? Tell me of your torture of both the physical and the emotional? Tell me of your troture both real and imagined. Tell me of your friends who have ‘disappeared”? Tell me of your past pain? Tell me of your future worry? Tell me of your living hell? Tell me why Eco-Anxiety is a thing? Tell me about the impacts of slavery on your life? Tell me about systemic racism? Tell me what its like to be a sex worker? Tell me why you are a sex worker? Tell me about your children in care? Tell me about your baby daddy? Tell me about your abusive mother? Tell me the impacts of your physical illness on your emotional wellbeing? Tell me about your workload? Tell me that you’re busy? Tell me about you overwhelmed? Tell me about all the causes you can’t keep up with? Tell me about your underearning? Tell me about long term unemployment? Tell me about homlessness? Tell me about drug addiction? Tell me about AIDS and HIV? Tell me about how your mother dies of tuberculosis? Tell me about how you see things? Tell me about why you hear voices? Tell me how the natural environment keeps you sane? Tell me? Tell me all at once? Tell me forever? Tell me the same story over and over again? Tell me the same story over and over and over again until it is changed or willfully forgotten. Scream me your pain. Wail me your terror. Burn away the ugliness and. Cut out the hard part. Bleed me your soul. Cry for the world and everyone in it. Swim in your sorrow. Water your dreams. Love your heart. Break the old to build the new.

Tell me of your birth trauma? Tell me how your wife left you? Tell me how the work doesn’t pay? Tell me about the natural disaster? Tell me about the flood, the famine, the wild friends? Tell me about the hurricane? Tell me about the tsunami? Tell me about your village that was destroyed? Tell me about the Tower Block theat burn down? Tell me about the negligent council? Tell me about the corporate greed of building manufacturers? Tell me about the burning of the witches? Tell me about womens rights? Tell me about menstruation? Tell me about land rights and why we haven’t got any? Tell me about the enclosures act. Tell me about Apartheid? Tell me that your grandfather survived the holocaust? Tell me about microaggressions. Tell me how you identify? Tell me what education means for you? Tell me what it was like to grow up in a cult? Tell me what it was like to grow up in a propaganda state? Tell me why Nelson Mandla was useless. Tell my why nothing has changed? Tell me about capitalism? Tell me about the anti-human system? Tell me about the perils of plane travel? Tell me about cultural appropriation?. Tell me about extractive economies and why they are harmful? Tell me about child labour? Tell me about slave labour? Tell me about emotional labour? Tell me about civil rights and freedom of expression?  Tell me about the refugees? Tell me about the neverending war? Tell me about nuclear weapons? Tell me about the Middle East Peace Process? Tell me what it means to be Palestinan? Tell me what it means to be Israeli? Tell what its like to work in antarctica? Tell me how your white privilege in fucking up the world? Tell me about plant medicines? Tell me about your psychedelic trip? Tell me how iowaska saved you life? Tell me about the impacts of chickpea farming and biofuel? Tell me why Tesla are bastards? Tell me why everyone else is wrong? Tell me the ways in which I can violently agree with you? Tell me about dehumanising language. Tell me how to change my language and use my words? Tell  me how controlling and annhiliting other peoples, communities, religion is necessary? Tell me why you only wear underpants woven out of your own pubic hair? Tell me why it is everybody else but you? Tell me why your frequency sucks and your life is a mess? Tell me why you will never be successful and we are all doomed? Tell me why you are a stoner and cannabis is the answer? Tell me why your right to alcohol is more important than a woman’s right to be safe? Tell me about your civil liberties? Tell me about your land trauma? Tell me about crime? Tell me about poverty? Tell me about connectivity poverty? Tell me why you haven’t got data? Tell me about the benefits of Cannabis? Tell me about the 1%. Tell me about education privilege? Tell me about the rights of the dead? Tell me about disabled access? Tell me about braille libraries. Tell me about clean water. Tell me about all of it, from the beginning to the end. Tell me the long story? Tell me the short version? Tell me where you lost your humanity? Tell me where you found it? Tell me what you dream of? Tell me what you love? Tell me what you aspire too?

Then after everything has been said that needs to be said. Feel it feel it all and just when you think you are finished, done,  completed. Then and only then act on it.  That the undervalued Art of In-Action.

If you’ve enjoyed this blog post you can donate here https://ko-fi.com/thelifedoula

Uncategorized

The Personal Is The Planetary

Can you see through the mist in your mind?

It’s ok my brain can’t taken either. All the stuff that I am supposed to be responsible for. All the things that I am responsible for healing. I get exhausted just listening to all the way in which we could, can and should ‘fix’ things. We stop eating meat and as a result create massive mono-crops. We head off to save The Amazon and burn more than our fair share of jet fuel. We stand in support of  Black Lives Matter and find our input unwanted. We get pushed and pulled in the local throws of planning politics and find our selves exhausted. First of all where the fuck do you start? Second of all does it end? I sense that you might already know the answers to that question.

Once again sovereignty is on my mind. What are we free to do? The answer to that is most things and as we stand on the precipice of action we have to ask ourselves do we have to do everything. The short answer to this is yes. We have to do everything for ourselves. Yet how is that possible.

Last week I found myself once again in the fray of where the political meets the personal. Where internal struggle meets the outward path and I was left wanting. I was left wanting in two ways. Wanting to be something different than what I am. Wanting the world to be different in the way it was. Of course, it was all caught up in the guise of the interpersonal relationship. The very essence of co-creation here on Planet Earth.

You see we are comfortable where we are. We are comfortable that our produce is made in China under an oppressive communist system, that denies human rights and forces people into ‘slave labour’. We are comfortable that the digital platforms are fraught with issues of governance. We are accepting of the corrupt way in which our governments operate. We accept the short-sightedness of the capitalist agenda. We are happy to consume the human experience through biased media. We are comfortable ignoring systemic racism. We are ok with dissenting voices being silenced. We buy into ideas of living our best lives on the backs of other peoples emotional labour. It’s fucked up.

I did a meditation on Saturday night to examine my issues about being unheard. How my micro informs the macro and it turns out that I might have a persecution complex. I’m literally dying to be heard. Is this level of commitment to my truth really necessary? It probably left me with more question than it did answers about my relationship to the anti-human system. It made me think about Jimmy Saville a prolific paedophile that had used his position at the BBC to gain access to vulnerable children. The thing is if you meet someone who worked at the BBC in later half of the 20th Century it was well known what Jimmy Saville was up to. Yet who spoke out? Everybody fucking knew. Yet it was too uncomfortable for anybody to draw any serious attention to it. They might lose their job, credentials or good standing and so the abuse continued.

Of course taking on every single injustice or issue is exhausting so we must be discerning about both out of our interest and our capacity. We need to make our lives sustainable on an immediate level. What makes us uncomfortable? For most of us it is a long list of things that we refuse to give up or even give into.

It came to me that slavery was a result of the Seven Deadly Sins the things we fail to take responsibility for projected onto another human body. That we might be able to own a human soul. We all have a calling it is our soul purpose to find it. We dance round the fire trying not to burn knowing that the flames only impulse is to hurt us.

If you are interested to find out more about this subject you can check out more articles below.

The Story of the Broken Goddess

Personal Activism

Heal Yourself First

Gaia The Traumatised Goddess

Process, Uncategorized

Generational Questions for a New Age.

IMG-8166
Wow I just realised Generationl = Gene Rational

I have to admit that when I set out this heading I was more focused on a climate emergency, than a global pandemic or indeed the continuing questions of decolonisation that systemic trauma is always posing.

Yes WTF? I was taking a very privileged stance as they might say. My privilege affords me the right to take a ‘wider view’ to consider the big questions. Do you know why? Because I don’t live my life in abject terror on most days. Fight, flight does stuff to your brain. It’s called trauma.

Yet at the same time, I’m still interested in root cause, you see. The root cause is trauma and trauma in my experience is largely systemic. For me trauma is the question of our generation. That is why I’m always talking about it. It affects everything and my hashtags might teach you.

The earth is not the issue, a global pandemic is not the issue, nor is race. It’s the way that we relate to each other and the world at large that needs to change. It’s why I am interested in the oppressor. I’m interested in a deep examination of self. How to use that personal power to fall out of the system, redirect my attention and create the new.

Systemic oppression is complicated if you are witnessing it through the lens of trauma. We’ve been taught to believe that feelings don’t matter. That only objective facts matter. Except objective facts aren’t human or humane. This is an inherited tool of oppression. It’s been passed down through the generations. It’s one of many. If we don’t care how people feel we don’t care about people.

It’s for that reason that the killing of George Floyd is so powerful it’s an objective fact that he was murdered on film by an organisation that is intended to protect him. We can’t argue with it. It’s truth. Yet at the same time, we aren’t taking the same heed of what ‘isn’t’ happening in the UK, Israel, The Yemen, Brazil or even South Africa. Our social media is biased, or news platforms limited. We are all bound up in systems of oppression. We are all oppressed. That is what the powers that be don’t want you to know. It’s divide and rule all the way.

We need to come together to debase systemic abuse on all fronts, on all levels, in all nations. That until we take control of our own trauma it’s almost impossible to take care of the people we need to help most. I’m ready to be torn down in flames over this. Fuck like really. Decolonisation work is scary. The reason that it is scary is because there is so much trauma involved.  You say the wrong thing you hit a nerve and a whole situation explodes. I’ve been there. I’ve been there plenty and still, I need to learn more so I have to ask more questions. Read more books and wonder what is actually going on. Really it’s trauma. The questions that we need to ask is how is our trauma preventing us from acting?

In recent months I have come to a conclusion, even though I’m writing now, even though I am centralising myself and even though I don’t understand everything and I will never get it all right. Oppressors need to be quiet. Unless of course, we are speaking to oppressors about oppression. We need to be able to hold space for the oppressed. We need to do some deep listening if anything is going to change.

The challenge that we face is that we seem to think that emotions aren’t’ real. That rage isn’t justified. Everybody’s rage is justified and it’s the result of not being heard. Black Lives Matter.

Process, Uncategorized

Trauma Healing

IMG-8078
Trauma can leave you standing on the edge.

We are all fucking traumatised, have been traumatised and there is just no way round that. Life happens we get told shit by our primary 2 teacher and it sticks with us for life. Unless you’ve been working at the challenge or have a remarkably put together family,  you are more than likely quite fucked up and even if you aren’t that’s probably traumatising on its own. Guess what nobody can ‘fix’ it except you.

You literally have to be the change that you want to see in the world and commit to it if you ever hope to make any significant difference in how you feel. It is still ok to be radically flawsome in all of that too.

Trauma is real and many of us are dealing with its impacts every single day. For a long time, maybe a decade I’ve known that trauma lies at the centre of almost every life disruption. That we are living in societies and systems that spend most of there time gaslighting us then act surprised about trauma. All Trump and Boris are doing is making it very clear that both our governmental systems and our leaders are very unwell. You’d be insane to heed either of them. Yet here we are having conversations about bleach and staying alert hopefully to stories about drinking bleach. We are living in extreme times in every way. There are nearly 35,000 dead in the UK and the government keep telling us they are doing a good job. Did I mention the gaslighting?  If we were in a personal relationship like the one we have with the state, we would have all been institutionalised years ago. There is a reason why the Scots are known to be aggressive. We don’t like being lied to.

This is really just the tip of the iceberg as to a whole host of things that have been de-humanising us over time. A baby is born and your back at work after 3 months. Bereavement is treated as an inconvenience rather than a personal tragedy. Cardboard boxes are deemed an appropriate disposal method for a human life.

Work-life to has now been radically altered, maybe never to be the same again as people move away from the traditional job and god forbid the idea of the commute (Cause that was healthy). Interdependence seems to be the word of the year. As the anti-human agenda of the, capitalist system truly begins to sink in. Capitalism is a crock of shit that is designed to keep us stuck on the hamster wheel of hell for all eternity. Where is the life in that?

Beyond this and natural disasters, humans can be truly ghastly to one another. Religious wars, Colonialism, Capitalism, Genocide and then there’s just day to day murder and torture. Never mind the minor issue of global poverty and inequality that drive the whole negative cycle. People feel shit they do shit things in desperate attempt to go to better places or something as simple as safety. It’s remarkable that in the times that we are living in that adrenalin fatigue is a real illness and we aren’t even running away from lions. We are simply working so hard that we aren’t able to look after ourselves. That even with all our improvements, we are burning out trying to keep up with an unreasonable system that treats us as human-robot there to fuel production and profits.

Off the factory floor, the impacts are massive; breaking down families, breaking down tribes, polluting communities and driving us to social and planetary emergency. As a species, we have been through a lot. In the last century, we have developed technologies that are capable of bringing armageddon in the haze of perpetual war.

All of this stops when we begin to take control of our trauma. Hurt people hurt people. We need to heal our hurts rather than inflicting them externally. It’s all about truth and reconciliation.

Check out my email free series on brain trauma

Here’s Gabor Maté talking about trauma.

Process, Uncategorized

The Birthing Process

IMG-8295
The blossom on the tree is not the end product yet it is the most beautiful part of the process. It seems to tell us a story about beauty that it is the blossoming. That real value can be hidden from us that the red flesh of the cherry tree might warn of danger yet if you are brave enough to bite through the dangerous flesh you will find delcious fruit

Right up until this week the primary focus of my work as The Life Doula has aways been Emotional Labour. Louiza Doran very kindly reminded me of.  Emotional Labour is largely the work or women and is the internal unpaid work we have to do in order for The System to function effectively. In addition to this Emotional Labour is our way to embody our collective wisdom, it also the way in which we navigate our own trauma; release and mitigate it on behalf of the collective. I was first introduced to Emotional Labour via a friend Natalie Swan, who had been reading Emergent Strategy by Adrienne Maree Brown (which I still haven’t read yet due to the clusterburach that was 2019). Part of that Emotional Labour has been the slow-moving realisation that there just hasn’t been the language or terminology to explain what I do. Which left me somewhat forlorn and frustrated in my slow diligent movement forward through life. I’ve been delighted to discover that the language that I am looking for is that of decolonisation. And beyond this I discovered a knew word this week epistemic – relating to knowledge or the degree of it’s validation.

Mental & Emotional health have been colonised by the limited insight of science that is bound up in matter. The only way I have been able to explain The Life Doula being “that you wouldn’t leave someone in labour. Why would you leave someone in emotional pain?”

In the process of becoming The Life Doula I have had to unlearn and challenge much of what I have been told is true. That one-hour sessions are optimum so that clients don’t learn dependency. That offering too much value undermines the financial stability of your business. The thing is I’m interested in healing. In ways that only The Great Pause could highlight. Our world is fucked because we failed to pay proper attention or take due care. That all of my work and the approach that I take is painstakingly considered through the teaching of my own healing journey. Now the science is catching up with my own theory and I find that I have allies in the shared work of trauma healing. To my disbelief, I stand on the precipice of being an educator nor just a dessentor.

You see the informal healing culture of the west is covert, as it has needed to be to survive. “You’ll be needing a cup of tea” is short form code for you’ll be needing a long chat and some ritual connection. We have always known how to heal each other. It’s that our wisdom has been removed from us in favour of the linear precision of the surgeon’s knife. We would rather have things cut out of us than gently resolve our inner wars through presence of mind.

Our healing challenges are now systemic. That we have outsourced our intuition, sovereignty and our ability to heal; to people that have no connection to us. Our being, our lives, our place. That somehow the human spirit and body is one miraculous generic creation that can be ‘fixed’. I think not. This is why I am a doula, not a coach. I’m not interested in your productivity, functionality or civilisation. I’m interested in the jagged edges of your soul and how they cut you to ribbons at night, silently in the dark where your screams consume you. Maybe this can be best described as your Emotional Labour. Now we long for something else beyond the pain of oppression, repression and survival. We long to be heard honoured and cared for. These radical ideas of worth are the decolonisation of a species. The decolonisation of a planet. Where the forced extraction economies of Mother Gaia may be coming to an end, it’s all very symbolic.

One of the most valuable lessons that I have learned this year is that you can’t have true love without respect. Which seem very pertinent as I start my Birth Doula training. You can’t extract a baby and the creation of one under force isn’t recommended. All creativity stems from vulnerability both sex and birth are representative of this act. The truth is you can’t achieve human life through human individuation, nor can you achieve optimum human status without the support of community. It is our human connections that make us capable of bearing human life, as well as bearing the wait of pregnancy. Like everything birth and birthing are a process. Where it is once again hard to know where is begins and ends. Where thresholds are crossed both literally and metaphysically, a baby is born, just as the mother is birthed. Birthing is painful, life is painful. It is also exquisite, miraculous, beautiful and extraordinary as The Great Pause is amplifying that stillness, waiting and gestation all hold purpose. Nothing is conceived fully formed. Where would the fun be in that anyway? We have to honour what emerges.

I started out this year following a theme of rebirth returning to Scotland after several years abroad. What occurs to me now is that I am deep in a birthing process; is that I am only now creating a life, a practice and knowing that I conceived years ago. That I was not ready to bear. The deep truth that I was not ready to bear being me and all the very real things that I would have to lose in order to find respect aka love. That the birthing process is one of love, protection and care that cannot be commodified and doesn’t belong in a system that wishes to do so. That my real work is birthing the sacred in all of us where birth, death and trauma are inextricably linked.  Where the light meets the dark and the shadows create the sparkles.

If you want to find out more about my work with the The Red Tent Doulas please do get in touch. In the meantime please enjoy the below meditation from The Soul Matrix

Uncategorized

Life Doula

IMG-8127
I came back to Scotland, joined extinction rebellion and got sent a beautiful letter that was signed off, with Love & Rage. It gave me all the feels.

 

There is more than one life doula out there. I might not be able to say exactly what they do or how they do it but it’s certainly a thing. More recently I came towards the idea that the best way to really describe a Life Doula is as a Trauma Doula. Life can be very traumatic you know? The number one cure for trauma a secure attachment and that is the core of my work. I will literally sit with you in the dark, you can cry on me, snot up my favourite clothes and I will be very happy to be of service. Yes, I do appropriate hugging and holding. It’s all part of the healing process.

Not only that this year, yes  2020 I’ve finally been able to reach out to both Birth and Death Doula’s who get it. That makes me happy because have felt tribeless as I push towards the kind of care I know the traumatised deserve.  I’ve been claimed and that makes me feel like I have a tribe. It’s better than that though, I have found The Red Tent Doulas and am going to be training with them this year as both a birth doula and a death doula. Which makes me very very excited. What makes me most excited is the Alexandra Wilson who is also of Sacred Circles described “Doula work is like a trojan horse” that the work of the doula does much to bring into question current systemic approaches to life as we currently understand it. Doula work asks us to step away from the idea that we are human robots and take us back to both our origin stories and end stories. That we all belong and that in the process of being born, living and dying we are all far more deeply connected than we might like to acknowledge.

Healing both our lives and for me at least acknowledging our life-cycles is a very important part of our innate sovereignty as humans. You see the work that I do has hashtags for days. All of is important because all of us are important. We are living lives in defiance of our very nature. It’s why we are sicker, unhappier and yet at the same time healthier than ever. A return to some form of understanding of our sacredness can do us every kind of good as long as it is not informed by dogma. There is no right or wrong way to do things. No right or wrong way to be. Even no choice, is a choice but to be careering along with no connection to your greater being is something other. We were not intended to live like this. Being a Doula is taking ourselves to a very basic understanding of the deep value of life. That as human bodies we are witness to something, profound and unique. That we only have one of. That only we know. That only we get to live. Doula’s honour that process. We honour life. We want to use our lives to honour you in your deepest vulnerability. We are here in service, for the love of humanity.

Process, Uncategorized

Ego Death & The Crushing System

IMG-8075
I’ve been tramping round Edinburgh to get to places cause money is a bit tight. The funny thing is that people feel sorry for me. After 7 years of being unable to walk around in the evening or at night, It feels like a total privilege to be able to enjoy what has come to be known to me as zombie time. Oh, twilight it’s nice to know you again.

So in my process of processing the term, Ego Death comes up. First of all, I do not in any way shape or form claim to be egoless. What I can say is that I’m stepping into me every deeper and exploring the inner landscape of shame in ways I’ve never been able to before. Maybe its because I’m turning 40 this year. Maybe it’s because I’m changing my approach.

Two things have happened to me recently one is getting a message from my Mother (who I’m currently estranged from) the other is having to get in touch with my old art college about course transcripts. Both have been triggering. Both have made me investigate my emotional landscape a little deeper. Even as I start to write about about it my anxiety rises and my self-harm ideation emerges and I very literally have to right now go deep into some somatic experiencing. I can feel the tingling of my skin the tightening of my chest and the emergence of ego as it’s rage and anger filled rant starts to emerge in my mind and I’m already getting up to the cup of tea and Instagram scrolling distraction therapy to not go there to deep. So I can stay here with you. You see I don’t think I talk about this part much. The fight. The fight to be here, to stay present, to keep going. To function while feeling and why the idea of ‘normal’ screams systemic abuse at me and makes me feel incredibly unsafe. You see for some of us and I’d like to think the growing part of the population that is becoming truer. The trauma levels are too high. The greenwashing, gaslighting bullshit is too toxic and I have to train hard to be able to deal with any of it. I know I am not alone.

Yet when I am out there posting my at-home selfies that don’t cater for outward appearances I feel like a failure. Like OMG seriously Kimberley again? You haven’t brushed your hair. How is anybody going to relate to this really? This must be so off-putting and then I realise that that is how most women feel all day, every night. That the pressure of appearance is crushing them, even when they have it all done. The hair, the make-up. The panic of office wear that has long left my life was a major liberation. I know for a lot of people that kind of freedom isn’t even on their radar. That I literally live a life of privilege every single day at home in a warm house with and internet connection in my pyjamas. You see and that’s when I think about it. That even the idea of self-care can be crushing. I mean I do brush my hair and teeth and I do do my four-step skincare most days. It’s just that because I work from home I don’t have to do those things immediately when I get up. Then some fab idea comes up and now I just hop online. Then even though I may be feeling good on the inside confident about what I’m saying my appearance doesn’t match my words. It poses big questions that although self-care might be for us what is it about ‘presentability’ that might be toxic. That people can’t see us as ourselves, at home in our pyjamas and does that work differently for men? So on that now I’m off to wash my face and grab some tea. To think about this a bit more.

I’m back.

Which takes me back to the thing I found triggering and why they interest me.  One I’m deep diving more and more into trauma recovery and the causes of systemic trauma which means a lot of deep diving for me personally. You see for me the personal informs the professional. I recently read somewhere (which I can’t remember) that they were thinking about naming CPTSD as a systemic disease. I’m not sure exactly what that means, except for me personally. So many things can be triggers if we are even slightly aware of the interconnectivity of everything how you connect with yourself is directly driven by how you were brought up and the family system you were or were not born into, will inform how you interact with the world.

Recently I’ve been thinking about that a lot. I am not ready to expose all yet. What I can say is that despite my trauma I do know that my family system made me into a change maker. You know why? Because I am playing out a polarity and using it to resolve my own trauma,  for which I am very grateful. It’s also allowing me to individuate in ways that I never imagined or managed. I’m learning so much about myself and my somatic experiencing about my family I’m quite simply shocked at the bodily feelings that come up for me. Like a few paragraphs before tears just started flowing down my face. It was purely a bodily response, a release.

The whole art school thing…well that. What I realise that through that horrific (Yes I do mean that) educational experience I would never have learned our understood exactly what it is to be complicit. How Systemic Abuse can be branded to look safe and how if we aren’t directly affected by Systemic Abuse we will still use corporate power to propel us personally and professionally even if we are well-meaning hippies.

So Ego Death…. what is it? Right now for me, it’s ending the idea of who you think you are or what you present to the world. I’m a lady that works in her pyjamas and old jumpers that don’t brush her hair until or wash her face until she is leaving the house. The weight of that truly feels enormous. Ego death isn’t anything to be afraid of. Most of us have already embraced it in some form or another when we donned our first uniform.