'Why can I not reach her anymore?'. This is the question so many men are asking me lately.
I am seeing a change in men generally these days. Their bewilderment engenders humility. Their hearts are aching to love and to see their partner shine again.
I see this in their faces as they arrive on the first night of the Making Love Retreat, downhearted and confused. Sometimes years of tears ready...
I see it with some women after relationship losses or long periods of being in a relationship.
The pull to be bitter is seductive. If you weaken, you will be sucked into its sticky web.
Don’t do it.
It’s not who you are.
You are love.
And whatever you can do to swim against those waves that want to take you out into that...
'Heartbreak is how we mature. It is as inescapable and inevitable as breathing. Even the longest marriage has it's heartbroken many times, even in the act of just staying together.'
Wise words from one of my favourite contemporary poets, David Whyte.
I see it all the time. A large part of the maturing of a relationship rests on how well we repair from upheavals and disappointments. Some relationships survive it. Others do not.
A wise mentor said to me once, 'A relationship can be for a reason, a season or a lifetime'.
This one. Me, 23, in Rockhampton in 1984.
A few months later my whole life was about to be turned upside down. I was having a heap of fun, had the best job ever. Art teacher at Rocky Girls Grammar. So good. Never really had any aspirations. Was just like a leaf floating along the river of life.
There's an acceleration of consciousness sweeping the planet right now. Can you feel that?
Things that were 'fringe' 30 years ago are now mainstream.
Conversations that were behind closed doors are now open and in the nightly news - abuse, depression, anxiety, sex offenders and narcissistic leaders being called out etc etc.
The world is now wanting authenticity. Not a glossed version of 'I have it all together' - it's about realness.
There's one real conversation that I am glad is being had now too and it's about another change - 'the' change - yes the change women go through anywhere from their late 30's, 40's, 50's. Menopause, peri-menopause.
There's nothing more real than your body changing unexpectedly or even gradually - looking down at it and seeing what once was up is now down!
Back in 1971, when I was in Grade 7, all I wanted was to become a ‘Sister of Mary’. They were the high school girls, who glided like angels into church every Saturday morning wearing these soft blue capes over their dresses. Like an apparition, they appeared so pure, so beautiful, so mysterious. Oh, I so wanted that!
You can imagine how disappointed I was when they abolished the practice just as I came into Grade 8!
Even though I have not been a practicing catholic since the age of 16, I am profoundly aware that those early years formed a deep impression on me and an appreciation of the sacred, of devotion, of dedication, of kindness and of love.
And it also left its mark...
Ok call me 'lame', but I have been watching MAFS, yes Marriage at First Sight. There. I admitted it... Embarassing.
Not the usual thing for me to watch these reality TV shows. I'm usually an ABC, SBS girl but I have to say this one had me hooked.... just a bit.
Not because I thought it was great or that I wanted to find out who would find true love... Because I was astounded at the dynamics of the relationships - the betrayals, the dramas and most of all, the way the women behaved.
In fact, I was APPALLED! ....
How I Wish
Back in 1998, life was changing for me. I was 37. My son was going into high school. We'd sold our business of 13 years, I was embarking on a new career in counselling, psychotherapy and creative arts therapy, and had pretty deep depression.
They say that counsellors go into this work, because they need it the most! Yep, that was me. But I also loved the creative process of the work.
Little did I know that the symptoms of depression, mood swings, disinterest in sex and general malaise were a few significant signposts that heralded peri-menopause. At 37! I remember when one doctor pronounced, 'yes you are peri-menopausal'. Peri what? What does that mean?
Women so often are in a cloud when it comes to changes in the body, symptoms that don't make sense and feelings that we wish we didn't have. That's why it is SO important to know our bodies, so we can be informed and possibly bypass some of the symptoms and also so we can feel like we are not going crazy.
Resonating with this?
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