May 102015
Andrew Ferez3

Illustration by Andrew Ferez

To the multitudes of souls out there for whom this day is an excruciating reminder of what you yearn for but have never known, these words are for you.

As you know too well, the Good Mother that is emblemized on this day, the one who is culturally exalted for her nurturing, selfless kindness, is only one face of the Mother archetype.

If you grew up feeling unseen, invalidated, or with instability, violence or chaos in the home, you will have seen some of her other faces.

Because our mothers are our first imprint of the world, that relationship becomes the blueprint for how we relate to life at large. If you experienced a scarcity of love and withholding of affection, the whole world can feel like place you aren’t worthy of belonging.

You may dream of wandering in those dangerous, abandoned parts of your psyche where structures go to crumble; what little life there is scrounges and competes for scraps, and there is danger at every turn. Triggers, like today –  where others seem have an abundance of warmth you don’t – can be an express bus to the heart of this desolation district.

Painting by Lisa Marquis-Bradbury

Painting by Lisa Marquis-Bradbury

Revitalisation of this vast and central wound is slow. But the first step to healing is the refusal to keep minimalising the impact that emotional neglect has created. Only then can you begin to grieve and, with your moistening tears, plant anew in that abandoned soil.

Remothering is an ongoing practice, (tremendously helped by a mentor), of learning to care for your body’s needs, validating and expressing your feelings, speaking healthy boundaries, supporting your life choices, and most of all – growing loving towards all that is unsolved in your heart.

To your remothered self I offer this future blessing:

Through trial and fire, against the odds, you have grown to trust that the world can be a safe place and you have every right to walk here. You have made parents of your instincts, intuition and dreaming; you have allowed love into where it had never before been received; you have grown life where once it was barren. With just a few found and trustworthy seeds, you have nurtured the greatest harvest there is in this, your humble life of belonging.

Bless your heart,

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A writer, artist and tender of dreams, Toko-pa has been interviewed by CNN News & BBC Radio and her writing has appeared in publications around the world. Thanks to Skype, she works with dreamers internationally in her Private Dreamwork practice, based on Salt Spring Island in Canada. You can find Toko-pa on Facebook or sign up for her mailing list to receive news about upcoming events.

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  11 Responses to “Remothering Day”

  1. Thank you dear Toko-pa….This was a beautiful message of caring to those who have wandered in the wilderness… Blessings of light and love, Lynda

  2. Mahalo nui Tok-Pa! I always seemed empty on this day, I felt more close to my mother when she died then when she was alive. I anointed her whole body in rose oil, and wept at each part of her body, blessing it with everything that was good. Her hand that held me and comforted me knowing that it beat me well into my forties. Her mouth that ridiculed me for never being enough, I blessed it with the sweetest of words. It was very powerful ceremony for me of letting go, and yet that emptiness remains in me on this day. Thank you for holding this space, I am reminded that my feelings are valid, and knowing that it is very healing. Much aloha

  3. Beautiful. Our Mothers are never perfect, mostly loving and sometimes cruel. As children, we love them unconditionally. We keep trying to teach them to love us unconditionally too….sometimes they just don’t get it. No doubt their Mothers were the same and the same before that.
    Our only hope is that we become awakened enough to see their pain.
    We can heal it through our own hearts and break the chain.
    It is then that our own children will have so much to gain.
    Because hurting your child goes against the grain.
    It’s insane!
    I want to blame.
    I blame myself for inflicting pain, I was caught in the chain.
    I hit my child too, it seemed effective
    But it left me feeling sad and reflective
    So mostly I yelled with verbal abuse
    What was I thinking, it’s really no use.
    My words were just as hurtful and full of pain
    I had everything to lose and nothing to gain.
    I still feel the guilt from those days long passed
    But the pain that I caused is easing at last
    I forgive myself for I was caught in the chain
    My anger, my hurt was full of distain.
    My son is now grown and we have done some healing
    But I’m not always sure how he is feeling
    There is a gap there and I can still feel it
    No doubt he is protecting so that he can heal it.
    This last month we have become closer than ever
    For his heart was broken by another
    I have been helping him heal his heart so broken
    Many a soft word I have spoken
    I see how beautiful my words can be
    How they can help him to heal
    and set him free
    And in return he has helped me to see
    This soft gentle person…
    She is the real me.
    And it is all I ever want to be.
    For love is always gentle
    And love is me.

  4. Thank for this deep healing and validation of the road I have traveled with a mother who was neglectful, vicious, invalidating and MIA. I have always worked to have compassion for her and her wounds while forgetting my own. Over my life I have been painfully aware of exactly what the relationship did to my understanding of myself. the world, my worth, my hope and my heart. At 51 I am finally emerging as my own strong self no longer tethered to my mother and her needs, able to love myself more deeply than ever before and to hold a space for her broken heart that she too can heal whether here or on the other side…

  5. Thank you for opening up communication with sisters of a family that’s been long broken because of this kind of ‘mothering’ we had to endure !!!

  6. Thank You Toko-pa.. you always find the subtle cracks and know just what to fill them with.

    The perfect paradox of the universe.. Abandonment, rejection, neglect or abuse of different types as a child teaches detachment & independence from an early age, valuable tools that many adults (with fairy-tale upbringings) fail to gain their entire lives. The real challenge from there on can be inter-dependence and trust.

  7. first dandelions then drunken roses
    brilliant, insane, my love
    for mom.

  8. So very touching! You are such a beautiful soul! I am putting these words in my journal!

  9. Very Beautiful soul you have! Thank you for all teachings

  10. thank you for your words on this day.

  11. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, it is right to acknowledge the ones who did not receive the love we felt we deserved. The acceptance of our mother wound is a painful and lonely. I won’t diminish the pain anymore I am going to embrace that pain and acknowledge the loss so that I may grow into the compassionate, warm and strong soul I know that lingers under the tears. love to you

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