Monthly Archives: January 2013

Why Is Menstruation Powerful

© 2011 DeAnna L’am

All indigenous cultures around the world
Art by Jessica Jarman-Hayes ©
In order to birth Life, we must first Menstruate!

In native cultures
Menstruation was known
as the time when the veil between the worlds is thinnest

In native cultures
Menstruation was considered
a time when women have access to the Divine

In native cultures
Women had special places to go to when they Flowed:
Moon Huts, Moon Lodges, Red Tents.

It was understood that when a woman bleeds
she is in a heightened state,
and cannot be bothered with everyday tasks!
In native cultures

Women spent their bleeding days in Moon Lodges
talking, crafting, resting, dreaming, laughing, crying, napping, chatting, being quiet, simply having time-off to re-charge their batteries!

In native cultures
Women in Moon Lodges dreamed prophesies for their tribes

In native cultures
People brought questions to the bleeding women:
From personal matters, to elders asking whether to wage war…
The answers that Bleeding Women received in dreams,
were followed with reverence!

In today’s cultures
Most women have nowhere to go to when they bleed,
most women act as if their bleeding time is no different than any other time, most women don’t rest or renew their energy when they bleed,
most women don’t talk about what they need when they bleed,
many women think their blood is gross…
What’s wrong with this picture???
YOU now know what’s wrong with this picture, so make your own picture, instead!!!

Excerpt from A Diva’s Guide to Getting Your Period – A hip, artsy, full-color, empowering booklet for Tween & Teen girls, by DeAnna L’am, Art by Jessica Jarman-Hayes, © 2011-2012, All rights reserved

For more information about ‘A Diva’s Guide To Getting Your Period’: http://www.deannalam.com/training/a-divas-guide/

DeAnna L’am, (B.A.) speaker, coach, and trainer, is author of Becoming Peers – Mentoring Girls Into Womanhood and A Diva’s guide to Getting Your Period. She is founder of Red Moon School of Empowerment for Women & Girls™. Her pioneering work has been transforming women’s & girls’ lives around the world, for over 20 years.
DeAnna helps women & girls love themselves unconditionally! She specializes in helping women make peace with their cycle, instructs Moms in the art of welcoming girls to empowered womanhood, and trains women to hold RED TENTS in their communities. Visit her at: www.deannalam.com

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Turning and Returning: The Foliage of the Heart

By Bethany Webster

I took a walk today and beautiful colored leaves covered the sidewalk. I looked around and saw trees glowing with colors of gold, deep red and orange. It struck me how beautiful it is that the leaves transform right before they die. Right when they are about to let go of the life they’ve lived for several months. The leaves survived the spring and summer, through many storms, wind, sun and rain. They’ve held on through so much and are now somewhat threadbare and tired looking. And right when they are about to be dropped and destroyed, they transform into a brilliant beauty. There is something so wise and beautiful in this. It speaks to the transformative, mysterious power of surrender.

When we are tired of resisting and trying to control life, when we are tired of pretending and striving, we start to surrender and let go, either consciously with intention to do so, or just from sheer exhaustion and overwhelm. We start to desire the deep rest and effortlessness of authenticity and the natural ease that comes from feeling held and supported.

There is magic in the way that as a leaf slowly falls, it is held and seemingly cradled until it finally rests on the earth.  It can be so soothing to watch a leaf fall slowly and gently to the ground, carried on the wind to a final place of stillness. On a deep level we all desire to release the rigid control that we’ve been conditioned to believe we must have on life. So often we fear that if we let go and lessen our grip on our life situation, that everything will fall apart immediately. This is not so. We are supported and loved beyond measure, but we can’t truly know this in our bones until we actually begin to let go and see what happens.

Letting go can mean many things to many people. Only you can know what it means to you. It could mean letting go of stress, of worry, or inhuman standards for yourself. Letting go could also mean simply slowing down the pace of your day, or reducing the clutter of your schedule or your living space.  A willingness to let go implies we’re done trying to hold everything together perfectly and are ready to be held by Life itself. We’re ready for life, a higher power, to take the wheel because we can no longer pretend that we have all the answers.  At this moment, we may feel totally defeated, exhausted or depressed. But I believe this is the moment when the inner leaves start to change within us and transform into a radiance our minds cannot fathom. It’s the beginning of an organic process leading back to the center of our being, to our natural state of unity with life.

As I walked down the street, I noticed that the some of the leaves had just fallen and were still firm, colorful and crisp. Other leaves looked like they had fallen weeks ago, which were colorless, damp and dissolving. Some leaves had already been reduced to pure mush and would soon go back to being undefined dirt, no longer recognizable as ever having been a colorful leaf that survived several seasons. As I walked over the leaves, I saw that they were being slowly pulverized under the weight of my boots.

After the initial relief and rest of letting go, we can come to a place of stillness and think that this relief is the endpoint. Yet, a pulverizing, or shedding process will ensue once we’ve rested on the ground of our being for a while. This is the point when people often think that something has gone wrong, that somewhere along the line, they failed, perhaps not letting go “correctly” or deeply enough. This is not the case, although it can seem to be that way. The pulverizing is a purging process in which after deeply letting go, anything that is not in alignment with the deep truth of your being will come to the surface to be faced and released. This includes ideas, beliefs and patterns that we have become attached to and have identified with, that had served only to maintain our defenses against painful emotions or the deeper truths we were not ready to face. This is a phase that, while it can certainly be postponed, it cannot be avoided, and ultimately the intensity and duration is different for everyone.

In a nutshell, after we surrender and let go, life asks us to let go of all that we are not, in order to become who we truly are.  This is a very holy, sacred time of distilling into our true identity as conscious spirit, life itself in physical form. We die as a leaf and dissolve, returning to the earth from which we initially came.

When we are in the process of letting go even deeper into Being, persevering through our shedding process, we start to have glimpses of our true nature, which is divine, untouched and ever-present. We see that we are indeed held and have always been held. If we stay true to the simplicity and ever deepening free-fall of surrender, the possibility opens up for us to directly experience ourselves as the One, the indestructible spirit that animates and lives within the heart of all Life. Our lives transform, our motivations change, fears lessen, thoughts are observed with gentleness. We embrace Life, living from a raw openness, simplicity and radical honesty.

Now the impulses of life move through us easily and we intuitively respond. We see our innate oneness with life. Circumstances change, inspiration sparks, insights flow into us, we feel drawn to once again take form, whether it’s a new life direction, a new project, or a new way to fold the laundry. Yet this desire to take a new form is not fueled by the belief that we have to achieve, obtain something or “be somebody.” It’s simply for the moment-to-moment joy of life itself! While simultaneously creating new forms, and dying as others, all the while, you consciously know your Self as the pure, untouched awareness, ever-present and intimate with itself. You are the fabric of life. You are Love.

© 2012 Bethany Webster

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Our Stories, Ourselves

© 2009-2012 DeAnna L’am

My own transition into womanhood was painfully lacking in warmth or empowerment. How was the day of Your first period?
Was it an inspiring experience?
Or is there a knot at the pit of your stomach when you think about it?
Our Inner Maiden, the coming-of-age girl we once were, is left inside us hanging, often shamed, embarrasses, or afraid. Her story never told, her beauty never seen, she grew up considering her periods “nuisance,” “bother,” or “the curse.”
The story of Menarche, our first menstrual blood, is rarely told.
It is interesting to note that women, who tend to share everything with one another, (from first sexual encounters to stories of survival and recovery from abuse) are silent about this one… Adhering to the cultural taboo around menstruation, we silence not only the story of our first blood, but also all conversations around our relationship to our blood. Somehow we adopted the notion that “linear is good” and we often live our lives as if cyclicity is not at the heart of our beings. Yes, we reclaimed ourselves as strong women. We break through ‘glass ceilings’, we combine careers with motherhood, we choose not to become mothers, we can do it all… but do we honor our blood?
Breaking silence is only possible in the company of others.
The healing power of storytelling lies in being heard and witnessed…
Make time with one or more of your close women friends to tell the story of your first menstrual period. It is astounding to find the similarities we share. The details of our stories may differ, yet the feelings are almost identical. In a room full of women there is always a sense of being able to relate to every single story as if it were our own.
In conflicting regions, such as Israel (my country of origin), I was moved to tears helping Israeli & Arab women transcend religious and political divides by telling their first blood stories. The bond this created among them far exceeded the rip they felt for years.
I traveled a long way from seeing my period as a nuisance, to reclaiming my Moon Flow as sacred, my Moon Time as a spiritual wellspring. Telling my first blood story, and holding space for women around the world to tell theirs, is an essential component in healing one of the last missing pieces of our inner puzzles.
We can tell blood stories in our living rooms, in cafes, on park benches, or anywhere women get together to support one other through conversation. Sharing our stories we embark on a long overdue journey: that of quenching our Inner Maiden’s thirst, and of integrating cyclicity as a conscious part of our womanhood. At the same time we create the necessary steppingstone to authentically welcome our daughters, or other girls in our lives, into womanhood.

DeAnna L’am, (B.A.) speaker, coach, and trainer, is author of Becoming Peers – Mentoring Girls Into Womanhood and A Diva’s guide to Getting Your Period. She is founder of Red Moon School of Empowerment for Women & Girls™. Her pioneering work has been transforming women’s & girls’ lives around the world, for over 20 years.
DeAnna helps women & girls love themselves unconditionally! She specializes in helping women make peace with their cycle, instructs Moms in the art of welcoming girls to empowered womanhood, and trains women to hold RED TENTS in their communities. Visit her at: www.deannalam.com

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Filed under DeAnna L'am, menstruation, moontime