A bladder loved.

 Collage A bladder loved

My bladder still leaks. Sometimes I am so used to it and then I attend a wedding in my hot little red dress and start to jump on the dance floor and with the warm release remember that I have holes. Leaks. Places that no longer work as they once did. I have to keep stopping and padding. I jump less and feel slight embarrassment with each trip to the bathroom.

So, it leaks. I'm working on it. I don't believe I will live with this forever. I do love the irony that bladder issues have to do with holding, with fear of letting go. So mine just lets go a lot since emotionally I am a master holder!

The pain from Interstitial Cystitis is mostly gone. Holy shit. I'll type that again. The pain is mostly gone. Today was the first day I've had a flare up in months. Months. This part of me working better than it has in so many years. I can have sex with ease and fun. My body can move and flow. It feels a bit like a rebirth for this part of my body, this feminine squishy loved place.

I feel sexy. I feel open. I feel my yes.

(Please grab that mantra for yourself.)


The pain was the crazy gift. I love my bladder. I have deep respect for all it does and even for what it can no longer do.

I understand that when I am 'off' like today it is a reminder that I am heading towards a new place. And that I must drink water even though I don't like to pee often.

It is my gentle nudge that I must start to create the nest for the new.

This loved bladder of mine allows me to feel present. To not run away.

Being present means not always being strong. It means feeling tired (like I am today) or scared. It is understanding the fears so we can move through. Each time new space is coming in our lives, something happens. It is in the listening that we are able to move through.

You can be strong later. In the present you need to feel it to move through it.


We have been talking about feeling in Making Space for Surrender. Feeling what you are fighting against rather than numbing it or silencing it. Feeling it so it can become a guide towards what you want. Feeling it so you can find a way to what you need.

So tonight I am going to put on my yoga pants and make mug after mug of steaming red raspberry leaf tea. I'm going to make a huge pot of chicken corn chowder (recipe will be in Holiday Joy Up). I'm going to clear out a few corners that have piled up with stuff.


On the last full moon I tried to release silence. Held the word inked on paper onto the red flames of the fire. But truly I suck at release. I don't like it if I'm being honest. But I wrote it down as though that word needed to jump out to the paper.

I thought it meant that I needed to find ways to talk more about how I am feeling.

What I've realized in the last few weeks is that I am actually releasing the fear of silence and opening to the softness of what I adore.

I use words. Typed on this old computer. Words unspoken are how I process. How I share. How I guide. How I teach.

For now I am not the girl in the therapist's chair. I write. I write to breathe. I write to move through. I write to feel.

And in the silence of my writing I find home, find love, find truth, find you, find longing, find peace.


A bladder loved. I had to feel the pain to find the love. And so...


A new prompt for those of you keeping your vision books. Find that intuitive beauty resting inside your lovely eyes, and play.







Love Note to Britta.

me and britta

When I launched Spirits of Joy last September, on my birthday, in gift form as part of my practice of gratitude, over 600 women signed up in one day. I didn't even have the head space to take in that kind of number. My paid programs can hit about 200 over the course of a month and despite the fact that it was a gift it is still a powerful exchange of energy to sign up for a course, and it felt really big.

Big in a way that I wasn't sure I was ready to hold the bigness.

I had the bones of the course but needed to fill it in and simplify it for the 30 days. Every time I would sit down to write I would go blank, numb out or start crying.

I skyped with my coach Britta.

I cried into my cloth napkin. I was in an upper limit crisis and she held it with me. Softly we talked about my fear of being so seen and witnessed and that now every word felt like it was being judged or held infront of eyes that would surely tell me I was a fake. I cried more.

This is a place we will all get to, most likely not just once. When we move past what we have held as limiting beliefs and into what we at a soullular level have always known to be true.

She had me send her some test letters from the program. And each one I sent she explained why it worked, why it was exactly as it should be, why I didn't need to push any harder.

I manifested my coach into my life.

A couple years ago I connected with a publisher or book agent or something (I can't remember) who lived in the town Britta lives. I remember adding to my visions that I would work on my book, my writing, my message in word form with a woman from this town. I couldn't remember her name or website so she was really indescript.

Britta came into my life through one of my Joy Up programs.

One day shortly after she became a book coach. We have been coaching each other since. This woman from this town who is helping me with my message in word form. I like to say I manifested her. She is also one of my best friends. We match.

My book coach is having a baby. Well, two babies actually.

Her family of four will soon be six and I am wrapping them in love bubbles as I know how this transition will feel a bit like my upper limit and last a hell of a lot longer. You know the thing you've wanted so deeply and then you get even more than you expected? Like that. I imagine twins can feel like that.

I am in a place of transition and discovery and bigness in so many ways right now, in this moment.

My coach sends me notes to let me know I am being seen and has taught me how to share more details so that I can connect to my readers in the way I long for, they long for.

She breaks shit down for me that I could never see. Each time I see an email from her it is like opening a love note (my love language is words of affirmation) and I trust her to guide me closer and closer to my book.

One day we had a drink together in her magical town.

She asked me one question that changed everything in my life and allowed me to move into my truth. (For now I keep that detail my own!) That was us as friends, thank you Universe for friends like that.

This is my love note to Britta.

Britta, the way I write, the way I show up in this world is forever altered and my spirit feels her wings because one day I manifested you, from your town, to help me share my message through words.

Damn, I visioned that one right.

When I launched Spirits of Joy again, this time as a paid program, I was able to look back at the last 5 ish months and see and feel the bigness. I remembered the cloth napkin I cried into. I saw the women in my mind who showed up for themselves and started to learn how magical visioning is.

And I needed to say thank you.

Spirits of Joy header



Highly Sensitive Unpacking

I return with vintage cowgirl boots, memories of hugs and laughter, magical moments in auditoriums and holding a glass of wine, chipped nail polish, frizzy hair and the deep desire to start something brand new.

Traveling light was not learned this trip, though now I know you really don't need heels in Oregon. Weird to this East Coast girl being at a conference with the most casual footwear ever. I eventually ended up in my walking shoes. Doing lots of walking. Only one blister.

The conference was one where I could tweet, cried my way through the conference, and have people tweet back, me too - there should be a HSP section in the seating to share kleenex. This is where we connect. Every now and then you need to be in a place where you don't once have to explain yourself or your work because 1,000 people know and get you. Just because you are standing in that hallway with them.

I am unpacking thoughts and inspiration of how to create more of this in my work. More community, unity, that sense that you are understood just by showing up.

Brené Brown will do her part to make the tears roll down. If you think she is awesome, she is actually a million times more awesome than that. Her story telling is where I will spend time studying because it is magic.

Sitting in a room next to Michelle Ward and Rachel Cole we listened to Danielle LaPorte do a Q&A session. She talked about how standing on stage was her persona, how her writing and her work were all part of that. In her kitchen she is different. I needed to hear this. You need to hear this.

Our online world is persona no matter how hard we strive for transparency or truth. The people who have been at the birth of one of my children or the neighbors who hear me lose my cool when the dog tears up my meditation garden know this. Persona is part of our gifts. Use it beautifully.

As Chris Brogan said on stage, we all poop, there is a book to prove it.

I was humbled by the people who came up to me, excited for my hug. I was there for them, how did I step into bizzaro land? I will never forget how incredibly gorgeous it feels to be noticed, admired and loved.

My travel wings have spread. After years and years of having babies and nursing, years that hold so much love and nurture and whole lot of exhaustion, I am flying off into a new world. One where I know how to spend time with myself. Where I acknowledge that I am allowed to because it makes me better.

To make my way on 5 modes of transportation in one day from coast to coast. Dream of the retreats I will someday guide. Feel space in new ways.

Each year I feel like a better person, growing more into how I want to show up. (This is where I get to insert that I got carded in Oregon for a glass of wine. Yep. Love that place.)

I am unpacking the lights, story and joy from my conference. I'm feeling the growing pains of re-entry after having been gone for more than a week. I'm planning outfits around my boots.

Yes, I rearranged the living room when I got back, Patrick patiently helped me, knowing that this was how I process, how I unpack, how I rejoin the pack.

Thank you Oregon for your beauty and grace. I can't wait to meet you again.


To all my new friends - thank you for the honor of knowing you, squeezing you and sharing time with you. Thank you for how much you truly wanted to be with me.

The conference was The World Domination Summit, in its second year, sold out each year with thousands on the waiting list. I am blessed to have attended.

Photo credit on second photo: Armosa Studios

The Joy UP Tribe Women - The Voice of Samantha

 Please join me in welcoming another voice from The Joy UP. Women who came together and journeyed through joy. Their voices are beautiful. Welcome today’s voice, Samantha. Samantha sent me an email after the joy up with these beautiful words. She also posted a blog about her joy up experience over on her online home, Angels by the Sea.
 I hope I have said thank you enough for our amazing days of Joy, but I've not yet said thank you for the shift the JoyUP created that puts me in tears at the very slightest hint of beauty now!
I have the inspiration to bring meditation back into my life- and to actually practice it.  Five minutes!  How wonderfully do-able is that.  You gave me permission. I love that it is full moon; and will spend the waning moon getting rid of all things not devoted to JOY in my life.

I have never made a simple list, but here's simple intentions which include:

  • I will spend moments most days by the ocean
  • I will share, and move from timidly to fiercely sharing.  
  • I will pretend I am invisible at times so I am not afraid to dress beautifully/ be playful/ do cartwheels (hope this makes sense, I'm just so damn fed-up with being self-conscious, the idea of pretending I am invisible came to me in the supermarket and it felt sooo good to just strut around, not caring who was looking at me!)
  • I will vacuum the house- and enjoy it...

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Please join us for The Soul of Joy --A 30 minute live call to join together in meditation and community and to call on joy's spirit and her soul uniting a gorgeous tribe of women.

September 22nd, 8:30pm Eastern Time (hopefully that can include some of you in different time zones)

The call will be recorded and sent out to everyone on the list so sign up even if you are unsure you can call in.

The energy live will be beautiful.

The Soul of Joy

Mama's Nu-Nu

Around the time Lucas was due to arrive most of my friends had weaned their second children and were not having a third. The talk was of boobs. I think there was more talk about boobs when we weren't nursing. The chatter was about how the boobs were now deflated and even the best of bras couldn't help.

I nursed for almost 8 years without stopping. I had a couple of months off right before Lucas was born. I tandem nursed Chloe and Eli. My boobs used to work hard. It was second nature to hear a fuss and move the babe to my breast. My nummy. My nu-nu. (Yes, children name them.) I went from a size AB to a CD depending on the amount of milk production at the time. It was not easy for me to have larger breasts because I had always associated my weight with my breasts. When I would lose weight, my boobs would also lose weight. I liked being thin. I liked having little boobs.

Listening to women talk about life after nursing was hard for me. It was mostly done in fun, but underneath I knew that there were body image issues that were taking hold as these women looked in the mirror and saw what was now their shape. After you are done nursing your breasts sort of dip down, they are a different shape. They are smaller. They feel a bit more floppy. Often they are called deflated.

Knowing in my heart that Lucas was the last baby I would nurse I was secretly awaiting my new boobs. I was so tired of carrying around these heavy leaking milk makers, as much as I loved nursing. And I really did love nursing. I never used a bottle or pacifier with any of my kids, it was me. All me.

I wanted to be small again, going against all the talk that was coming from the women around. My nursing boobs used to draw attention, I was ready to go back to small. Deflated seemed harsh, these women are beautiful creatures. Gorgeous really. I saw them move from nursing their children and grow into women from the mothers they had become.

I get a little teary when I look at my nursing pictures. Sometimes I miss the feeling of my kids being so small and so close. Lucas and Chloe were tough, they wanted to nurse so much I often couldn't breathe. That part makes me tear up a little too. Knowing that somehow I got through the sleepless nights, the demands of only wanting me. How lost I would feel sometimes.

Mama's nu-nu are now Hannah's breasts again. They occasionally get poked and questioned about their purpose from Lucas who just barely remembers.

Mama, are those your nu-nu? I used to drink those nu-nu's milk?

They are not that small. I am not that small. I don't diet anymore and that means my body is larger than it used to be. At least for now. Loving my body includes my breasts. I love them, love having them back as just a part of me. I love that they worked so hard, gave so much. I don't mind the dip, the new shape, the bit of deflate they have. I actually love them more than I ever did.

Our body issues run deep. Whether you have nursed or not, breasts carry such strong importance to how we feel about ourselves. They are our feminine, our curve, our sensuality. Let's not use them as a way to continue to find another thing wrong with our body.

Love them. Love you.

My nu-nu taught me so much about who I am. We've got to love that person. Honor our shape, our beauty.

Truly it can start there.

The Pain of the Present

A night in the E.R. was a lesson in being present. Patrick and I were talking about how there is no better way to be in the moment, the now, then when you are in pain.

I kept trying to tell myself during the pain that in a few hours I would feel better. The pain didn't care. It kept on and I was in the now with each spasm and what I can only describe as labor pain.

I felt the pain of the present.

I had some sort of bladder infection that reminded me of my second and natural miscarriage which presented for me intense back pain. Pain holds strong memory. It is the sensory memory, just like the smell of coffee and cinnamon buns can transport you to a kitchen years past.

A perfect E.R. patient I am not. I am exhausted, not wanting morphine and quite confused as to why they would think I would have a kidney stone. (I do by the way.) I think at one point I mentioned my bladder infections never reading on a test as an infection, they were mostly emotional, something about homeopathy. Yeah, you can imagine.

Eventually the pain released somewhat and I relaxed  into the stretcher, which was quite comfortable at this point. I knew what my bladder was telling me, I've heard it before. We have strong connections to parts of our bodies, if we are open to hearing them, they will speak to us.

Louise Hay says what I know, the bladder is all about holding. It is a spot of held anxiety, of holding onto old ideas. Problems with the bladder represent fears of letting go. Of being pissed off.

My bladder has always spoken to me. After my first miscarriage I couldn't pee. It may have been from the surgery, but I remember staying up all night, eventually I nibbled on catnip (I know) and lit a candle and just prayed that my bladder would release. Finally it did.

I suffered a similar experience as this bladder infection when we were planning my wedding years ago. I had some old things that needed to be released, I had fears. It wasn't until I addressed them that my pain and bladder were able to heal.

It makes sense that my bladder is asking me to be present. There is a lot going on in my world. I'm shifting, I am having old feelings surface, I'm doing it all with three kids and feeling some guilt about my world mixed with theirs. I am ready to move into the next phase of opening space for myself. I am ready to cleanse*. Occasionally I get pissed off.

Louise offers us a new thought for healing when the bladder is involved.

I comfortably and easily release the old and welcome the new in my life. I am safe.

I stayed in bed most of the day yesterday. I thought I would just take the computer and catch up on some projects. Be really productive. All my body wanted to do was sleep and rest in the cozy blankets. I read a little bit. I felt some of my emotions rise to the surface. I woke up to find a message from a friend that said exactly what I needed to hear.

Being present means not always being strong. It means feeling tired or scared. It is understanding the fears so you can move through. Each time new space is coming in your life, something happens. It might be like my bladder or it presents itself in your own way. It is in the listening that you are able to move through.

You can be strong later. In the present you need to feel it to move through it.

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*During this cleanse I am going to add an optional component of releasing to our 10 days. We'll talk about how to release some old fears, or habits and how this cleansing time will be perfect for allowing you to make new space for yourself. I will be doing it right along side of all of you, ready to let go of some of my old stuff.


Words All Around Me

I have a little one who leaves elfish notes around the house for me, composes songs for any occasion and writes comic books with a dry humor fitting a creative 8 year old. I keep many of the words where I can see them. If I am upstairs on a call she will slip a goodnight note under the door. I find things posted on my vision board more often than I would like, some actually stay. She may know what belongs there before I do. I treasure these little notes which are words of wisdom and humor from this child of ours. When she is struggling to find her voice and share her feelings, we always find a note. As years pass I imagine the notes will remain as her source of communication. For now, I'm honored she's passing them to me.