We Give Ourselves Away
 
Self Love. Boundaries. Forgive. Cleanse. Heal. Reclaim. 
 
I spent years giving myself away. I gave myself away because I did not know better. I was taught that one must earn love. I did not know what boundaries were or how to create boundaries in a relationship. Creating healthy boundaries was a catch phrase until I had enough - spoke it and vowed to do differently, and a door opened for me to learn a new way of relating to myself and others.
I gave myself away because I thought this is what women do to be appreciated and respected in our society.
 
We give ourselves away in co-dependant relationships with our parents,lovers, our children and our friends.  We give ourselves away to keep the peace. To feel a sense of belonging in our families and with our partners. We give ourselves away to redeem ourselves. 
We give ourselves away because we feel guilty for being different. 
We play small when we give ourselves away and we inadvertantly send a message out that others are more important than we are.
We carry the stories of how our ancestors survived in our cells. Sometimes we carry their guilt and we give ourselves away on behalf of them.
We give ourselves away because of our own guilt - because we did not stand in our truth when we were called to do so, we lay down our own punishment - we give ourselves away in acts of redemption. 
 
We give ourselves away for our causes and our circles. Places where belonging and fitting in and feeling part of community feeds our souls. These sacred spaces are the closest thing many of us find to being part of a functioning family. Often all the same dynamics present within a family lives within our circles, and we have to learn how to speak up for ourselves, how to be heard when the majority of voices move in a different rhythm than us. 
 
When we have been in a spiral of giving ourselves away, we need space to feel and express our feelings and our grief. A new way of relating cannot open for us until we feel and grieve the old ways of being. In giving ourselves away, we have given parts of ourselves away to others. Those parts cannot come home on their own. 
 
I have experienced and witnessed in others what not having space to express our grief and our trauma creates in our lives and within the circles we are a part of. I know how difficult it can be to allow our emotions their freedom. And how scary it feels when our feelings finally come to the surface to be felt and expressed. 
Many of the structures within our societies offer no space for our true feelings. We feel forced to hold ourselves together even when we know we are falling apart. Often our circles are so tightly held together that there is no space to receive us fully when we are triggered. 
Most of us carry some form of trauma. This trauma in our bodies need to heal before we are able to stop the spiral of giving ourselves away. We need spaces where we can grieve and feel held. 
 
I now offer what I have learnt through my own journey. I leamt that feeling worthy is not based on self sacrifice. That Our Source - Our Mother Divine offers Her unconditional Love tp us regardless of whether we feel worthy or not. 
 
My Yoni Steam Sessions and My Womb Healing Journey’s are held in a way that allows space for all your trauma and your grief. With my shamanic drum I offer ways of calling back, of reclaiming and of integrating your lost soul parts. 
 
All of who we are is held within the fields of our wombs and haras.  When we reclaim ourselves from our epicentre - from the heart of our being we are able to come home to all that we are. 
 
 
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My own healing continues to be grounded in my choice to keep calling forgiveness into my being. I call the forgiveness that is like soft rain washing through my sacred body - a balm to my pain. The Forgiveness that has the capacity to teach me about my ability to open my heart to myself. 
 
I offer this invocation 'I Forgive Myself ‘. I see and feel how forgiveness clears my energy field and my capacity to feel my feelings. Forgiving myself means that I no longer hold onto beliefs that I deserve to be punished for my mistakes. It opens me to feelings of compassion and understanding towards myself and therefor to others. 
 
I start to see that I have done my best. That that is all I could do at the time. No matter what I think I could have done if only I knew then what I know now. Nothing else could be done with the skills I had then. I did my best.
 
Forgiving myself means taking responsibility for my own actions without burying myself in failure for what has not worked in my life.  It means saying that I am Worthy.  Yes, I am Worthy. I am Worthy and I can Forgive Myself.
 
It means I can no longer hide behind the blame game. I can no longer hide behind the story that I am not good enough, or that I am always misunderstood and every one else gets to live their dreams and visions. There can be no more poor me when I start applying this balm of forgiveness to myself. Without this act of forgiving myself I remain stuck in a story where I am the victim. Where some one is always doing something to hurt me, or betray me, or violate my rights. I remain stuck in the story where I cannot learn to trust myself. My finger remains pointed...
 
There is a well of compassion inside ourselves and as we make our intentions to forgive ourselves, this well rises to meet us.
 
I invite you to hold your left hand on your heart and your right hand on your womb or hara. Take a few deep breaths and feel how your roots grow deep down into the moist earth. Allow yourself deep breaths as you ground your intention to forgive yourself.
If you wish you can light a candle or create ceremonial space before you start. When you are ready,  speak your words of forgiveness to yourself out loud. I recommend you speak your words a few times and that you do so as often as is possible for yourself. Allow whatever you are able to offer yourself in the moment to be enough. May It Be So.
 
May Divine Love Embrace Us All. 

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On Saturday 6 February is the International Day of Zero Tolerance Against FGM.

On 6 February I will Hold a Free Healing Transmission called Healing the Flower. I make this offering as part of my healing journey and are inviting women and men around the World to hold hands with me and the Fountain of Life In a Worldwide Healing Circle as we pray for the Healing of our Sisters and all affected by FGM. We hold a candle to birth new ways to celebrate and honour our young girls and women here on our continent.
 
We know that there exists a cycle within which FGM thrives and survives. This cycle includes the families who continue to take young girls to be cut, the Cutters whose means of surviving is the monies earned from cutting, and the men who demand and in most cases pay for young girls to have the cut in order to prepare for marriage to them.
 
Thousands of years of female genital cutting has left young girls, women and men with a distorted experience of life and our sexuality. It has left us with feelings of shame, fear, betrayal, terror and deep grief.
Our experience of life has been altered as a result of these painful and horrific experiences.
 
Our Vaginas and Wombs are sacred and hold every trace of our deepest experiences. When shock, pain and grief is held within, we lose parts of ourselves. Our connection to life and the creative power that dwells in our sacred centers diminishes and becomes blocked. We move through the world from a place of disconnection and frozenness without knowing this is how we are.
 
When we allow ourselves to open to the grief that is frozen inside us, we begin to feel again as our tears start to soften the layers around our hearts. If this can be held in a container of forgiveness and love, we can integrate the most traumatic experiences and our hearts can flower again, in all it’s fullness and richness. 
 
I hold a candle for the healing of the yonis/vaginas and wombs in Somalia, Guinea, Djibouti, Sierra Leone, Mali, Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, Burkina Faso and Gambia, all rated as the countries with the highest incidence of FGM. 
 
I hold a candle for statistics to be collected and Education to be made available and visible by the South African government, by the lawmakers in Lesotho and Indonesia where no statistics is currently been collated. But we know that FGM is practiced in these countries. 
 
On Wednesday 5 February, a young reporter Monique Hansen from the Children’s Radio Foundation based in Cape Town conducted an interview with me. It felt incredible for me to host my first radio interview with a young woman for a children’s radio station. It felt profound for me to be in the center of this young woman empowering herself with education on the subject and the young girls most affected by FGM.
 
Here is a link to our interview
 
May all the offerings of campaigners all around the world birth new traditions and pathways that support, nurture and show love to young girls and women in our country, continent and the rest of the world.
 
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"Africa is the missing link in the chain that is the world. The World Cannot Heal, until African Women Rise and Reclaim Their True Power and Place in the World” - High Sanusi Vusamazulu Credo Mutwa.
 
Historical decisions against female genital was made by Nigeria and Gambia during 2015. And a total of 23 out of the 29 nations that practice fgm have enacted laws against fgm. 
I Offer a Bow to All the Anti - fgm Campaigners around the world for continuing to roar at the damage this practice causes women and young girls. The revolution against fgm is spreading, one class room, one arrest, one educational anti - fgm show and one conference at a time. The ripple that so many campaigners have created by each throwing our own pebbles in the big pond, continues to gather momentum as we witness more and more young girls refusing to undergo the cut. Now that these historical laws have been passed, we wait to see that they be enforced by lawmakers in their various countries. 
 
For a while now I have been working with the gift of healing. How does one heal from the layers of betrayal and pain experienced during the cut. 
With Female Genital Cutting seen as a crime perpetrated by women against women, It felt fitting that an Apology from the Feminine to the Feminine be spoken out loud and clear. The many ways we as women undermine, judge, belittle and hurt one another was reason enough for me to offer to work with this kind of apology. The raw emotions that surfaced for each of us as we first uttered this Apology in a small group in Cape Town, was transformative and acted as a healing balm. I saw how meaningful working with the Apology was for many.
 
I was so encouraged by the power of the Apology from the feminine to the feminine that I decided to craft another Apology from the Perpertrator to the Survivor.
Imaginining the person there apologising to me, instead of waiting to forgive some one - who may never offer me an apology. It meant that I could move on, shake the pain off, shift the focus and fill my heart and yoni/vagina with beauty instead of holding onto the pain.
The responses I received when the two Apologies went public was incredible. Many women told me they cried for the first time in years. 
Actively embracing forgiving those who have hurt us, without waiting for an apology has been one of the most healing offerings for me to make thus far and I can only encourage the medicine of forgiveness and grieving for all the ways that we have been abused, violated, disrespected and alienated. Both Apologies are available here on the website for you to use and adapt to your own set of circumstances.
 
Women and Young Girls in Africa are Roaring like Lionnesses to Reclaim our Rights over our own Bodies. To Reclaim the Power of Our Yoni’s / vaginas!
I Feel Blessed to have made My Roar Ripple out to Gather and Meet Your Roar.  
 
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 Female Genital Cutting is no longer a secret talked about behind closed doors nor is it one that countries can continue to ignore. Academics and Anti- Fgm activists in Iran has broken the silence.

 
Under the title “Razor and Tradition” the Sociology Faculty of Social Sciences at Tehran University organized a conference about Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Iran on 11th of July 2015. 
The intention of the conference was to shed light on all aspects of FGM.
It was the first time that an official body connected to the government broke the silence about this issue in Iran and most of the official and important newspapers published speakers’ speeches in full details. The psychoanalyst Dr Nazi Akbary, sociologist Dr Ahmad Bokharayee and Rayehe Mozafarian, writer of the book “Razor and Tradition” and campaigner of Stop FGM Iran, spoke at the conference.
 
Dr Akbary first talked about the physiological and emotional affects on girls after experiencing Fgm. He then mentioned the problem of exclusion if girls are not circumcised: “Among my patients I saw a girl from Somalia who had been expelled for failing to do so. Also it was interesting for me that in my research that the men were reluctant to do so but women were more willing to circumcise their girls because they want to guarantee their daughters` future enabling them to choose the best man for marriage.”
 
Rayehe Mozafarian started her presentation with counting 11 seconds and drew the audience’s attention to the fact that every 11 seconds a girl is cut in the world. For the operation which damages women’s sexual organs there are three different terms valid by law: Female Genital Mutilation, Female Genital Cutting and Female Circumcision.
 
There are many countries who share no data or statistics with Unicef. South Africa is amongst those despite the fact that the Venda people openly practice FGM. Rayed Mozafarian asked the Iranian government to give all data and information and all statistical studies to UNICEF. There are 29 countries in the list of UNICEF but more than 10 countries do not add in this list yet and most of them are Middle Eastern countries where FGM is happening but because the respective governments do not accept to introduce themselves to UNICEF addition to this list is postponed and on the other hand more girls are more at risk. Iran’s government should accept this problem as common in Iran. Mozafarian concluded her speech by inviting the audiences to join to “Stop FGM Iran” reminding of the slogan of this campaign: “even one victim is too many”.

 

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