What's A Fierce Heart, Anyway?

In this moment, I’m sitting here looking out my window at the trees and the grass after a very long rain. The sun is coming out and the drops on the trees are fresh and shimmering in light. My heart feels full and relaxed and I feel a deep gratitude for all of the abundance available to me here in this very moment.

There’s a lot happening right now in the world. There is so much suffering and fear and separation between people and communities and hearts. And, a lot has happened in the past year in my life. More loss than I ever thought I’d be able to handle. With all of that, my heart feels more full than it ever has. And I feel more clear and grounded in my purpose and body with a great warmth that encompasses it all.

THIS is what a Fierce Heart feels like.

Being able to continue to keep my heart open amidst all of the ups and downs that this human life brings.  Staying committed to deepening into love and healing a covered heart amidst so much tragedy and confusion. THIS is what a Fierce Heart Feels like.

It can be so easy to shut down and pull away and numb out. It can be easy to get angry and hopeless and afraid. It’s contagious, especially with so much information right at our fingertips anytime we want it.  Meditation, mindfulness and loving-kindness are what keeps me connected to my own true knowing. They keep me supported internally in a way that feels like I can ride the waves instead of get tumbled by them.  

With all that’s going on in the world, kindness and compassion are one incredible way to making positive and sustainable change. With our mindfulness and access to compassion and kindness, we can respond wisely to the needs of the world. With this, we can have conversations with people that we’re having difficult time understanding their side and learn to better tolerate and understand our differences instead of live in hatred and ill-will.  It is much harder to meditate and practice compassion than feeling anger and judgment but I believe it’s well worth the effort. It has benefits that can last a lifetime.  

I have been practicing for almost 15 years now and I am grateful every single day that I stuck with it. I didn’t always have a daily practice. I was a binge meditator for most of those years. I’d go on retreat, get all fired up, come home and practice avidly for about three weeks and then I’d fall off the wagon. Then I’d go on another retreat or have a big healing experience in therapy, get all fired up, come home, practice avidly for about three weeks AND REPEAT.  I’m so grateful I had the privilege and opportunity to be able to go on retreat all those times, I don’t know what I would have done without them.

The progression of my practice is just what I needed to get closer to my own heart with all of the trauma I held in my body It was difficult to do anything regularly without having inner access to the warm fire burning in my chest. One day it just naturally grew and the fire stayed lit.  This, I believe, was from staying with it just in the way I did and never giving up - showing up whenever I felt I could. Daily practice has grown on me slowly like an acquaintance you get to know over the course of many years - you see them here or there and then one day you realize how much you have in common and how much you adore each other and then you dive into a consistent, loving and nourishing regular connection.  

Many days meditation feels like a refuge. A warm place to come home to where I feel safe and loved. Other days it’s a lot of noise. Both days still have a wise, caring and compassionate presence available. That’s what meditation is all about for me. It’s not about forcing myself to feel peaceful.  It’s about having a compassionate and loving presence available no matter what is going on internal or externally.

A steadiness amidst the storm.

Every April, we have a very sweet women’s retreat. It’s about THIS.  It’s about cultivating a wise and compassionate presence with yourself and the world. Through silent meditation practices, relational mindfulness activities, mindful movement, time for rest and connection, healthy and nourishing meals and being in nature… we create a space together where this Fierce Compassion can grow and thrive.  

The retreat is for female identified folks in all levels of meditation practice - there is something offered here for everyone.  If you’re new to practice, you might be saying to yourself… “I could never be silent that long” or “I could never be still that long”.  That’s what most of us said when we first heard of meditation.  And… that’s why we needed it the most.  So, you are very welcome and you won’t be alone.  We all started somewhere. 

Please join us in April or share this with someone you love who might benefit from a weekend of inner and outer compassion and kindness.  Click here to read more and register.