Highlight : Shervin Boloorian

Q: What inspired your new album?
SB: It’s an album of sacred songs, and chants from ancient texts. Each one has a positive message and is recorded in the original Persian or Arabic. The songs on my album “One with the Beloved” are mostly original compositions and others are my versions of traditional Sufi Mantras and folk songs.  

Q: How did your upbringing influence this album?
SB: I grew up in Britain in an Iranian refugee household. We spoke Farsi at home (Persian) My parents had lost virtually everything in Iran. It was humbling to experience being an outsider and to learn the importance of compassion and friendship at a young age from certain English friends we had who were kind to us.  I went to the US to go to college after getting my GCSE.
Iranians revere figures like Rumi (a 13th century philosopher and poet), whose texts are the main inspiration for the lyrics used in my album. Rumi himself was a refugee who had a revelation which transformed his creativity. I resonate with Rumi’s journey and his wisdom is timeless and universal to me. Leonard Cohen and Coldplay are among the most well known musical artists who have been inspired by his messages, yet his name seems to fall into obscurity. I am hoping to change that through my new album.

Q: Can you explain more about your vision of unity over separation?
SB: Whenever there is political violence that may hold a person in dread or despair that you pause before judgement and consider that this is a desperate act and not how people normally are. Of course some will say that is already happening, but is it really sinking into our consciousness that Islam, Middle Easterners or people of faith in general are not a danger? When people make these claims, they are attacking every person of faith and rather than to debate which side is wrong or right, I wanted to make a contribution showing the world that there is a universalist message from within a faith, which is wrongly associated with violence.
We in the West are urgently lacking when it comes to reversing stereotypes in a meaningful way about civilisations that we have been at odds with. Policies of alienation and adversity are outdated and are not working as they stand. We need to start focusing on humanising and not ostracising those we cannot understand—and engaging from that place. That means calling on imagery, figures in history, literature and artistic expressions that can help us regain a more complete picture of those who have been our so called “enemies”. If we can do it in a way that is relatable, then I believe, lives can change as well as perspectives.
I believe everyone can relate to a figure like Rumi because of the tremendous appeal of his writings and it’s no accident that he is experiencing a resurgence today at a time when our relationship with the Middle East is at its most chaotic. We need more of his voice.     

Q: What measures do you feel people could take to try to overcome the current worldwide barriers of political mistrust?
SB: I could say what everybody else says: “vote” “be engaged civically” and “write to your elected Rep” and generally I would respond in such a way, BUT the truth is we’ve had colossal failures when it comes to our policies concerning the Middle East.
When it comes to something like our relationship with Iran for example (and I worked in Washington on this issue) there is a lack of reliable information and it creates this sense of desolation no matter what we do or where we turn. Historically, when our institutions are gridlocked, it’s up to the grassroots to get involved and to come up with alternative ways of pursuing the positive change that we urgently need. That’s not practical or easy when there is a large distance and gap in cultural awareness.
Music and the Arts are powerful tools in rebuilding that human bridge. Their potential is untapped here, and if we can make these tools accessible and personal, if we can trace the relationships between societal wounds and the wounds and fears within each person’s individual consciousness that exists, then there is hope, and I believe Rumi would approve. 
Q: What is Sound Healing and how did you first come across this?
It’s a holistic modality that involves vibration and frequency (not just music) and it can have positive effects on the consciousness and the physiology. I learned about the cellular research that Fabien Maman was doing on blood cells and their response to sound vibration and was inspired to become a practitioner. I went on train at Fabien’s Tama-Do Academy of Sound, Color and Movement and became certified as a sound therapist in 2011, two years after leaving my career in Washington DC. 

Q:You have worked in the past with many major businesses such as Google to provide their teams with Sound Healing and Talks. How did this come about and what has been the feedback and positive impact of these?

SB: I had someone who took a workshop with me in Bali who worked at Google. They invited my to their offices and I did a presentation for them in Singapore and had a great response. I have also done corporate events in Bali and shared about my personal journey to retreats and private groups as well as giving a demonstration of the deeply relaxing effects of the different instruments I play.

Highlight : Fabio Gori

FABIO GORI

When did you discover an interest in healing?

Since a young age, I had a passion for the body’s anatomy and it’s movements . From the age of 14 I was teaching sport disciplines in the local gym and from this, my interest in posture and wellness grew. Shitzu was my next interest followed by my degree in physiotherapy to complete my journey with a six year course to specialise in Osteopathy , it was a natural progression.

I believe osteopathy came to me, I didn’t look for it.

What type of healing do you do?

I know various ways to achieve overall physical wellness, however after many different studies, osteopathy is what gave me the best results and satisfaction. I wouldn’t define it only as a healing therapy, everything is based on the deep knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the human body but also from your perception and feeling in tune with your patient.

What is your brief description of Osteopathy?

It’s a type of alternative medicine that heals the partial or total loss of muscle tissue and bones, cranial and visceral. It gives back movement, the cells are improved, the body achieves total harmony.

Osteopathy helps the three body’s components : self-healing auto-regulation and homeostasis

What do you want people to know about Osteopathy?

Very often, the general public confuse osteopathy with chiropractic referring to the thrust adjustments, however osteopathy is divided into three branches.

Structural osteopathy, describes the diagnosis and treatment of dysfunctions in the musculoskeletal system.

Visceral osteopathy relates to the visceral system, mobility and the ligaments.

Cranio sacral, a palpation of the cranium can be used to detect rhythmic movement of the cranial bones and selective pressures may be used to manipulate the cranial bones to achieve a therapeutic result. A good osteopath uses all three disciplines, choosing different techniques based on his perceptions.

Why do you do this particular sort of healing work?

I have chosen Osteopathy, because I help people to get better with my treatments, real treatments of anatomical basis. Also a good sense of perception is needed to get in tune with the patient to understand what the patient needs. This is a gift I have received , I am not sure who from and why , I only know that I get in tune with the body and my patients can perceive this energy and it’s effects.

Years of medical studies, physiotherapy, elastic therapy and anatomy, everything supported from a great passion and curiosity of human wellbeing. I think I have an innate gift in perceiving where the problem is and how to heal it, a mix of these factors has led to what I do today.

How did you develop your abilities and methods?

After years of medical, physiotherapist healing and anatomy studies. Also with a passion and curiosity of how the human being can achieve a state of wellness . I believe I have the gift of perception in finding where the problem is and how to solve it . A combination of those factors made me what I am today.

How do you prepare for your sessions?

Three words describe my session: Attention (meaning total concentration), Presence (I’m fully here mentally and physically) and Intention (I transfer with my energy information to the patient who receives it).

What does a visit to/working with an Osteopath healer involve?

An osteopath session involves meeting the patient first to discuss any physical problems, this is also a good opportunity to get to know the patient to help me to get in tune with him/her. Second step consists of palpating the patient ‘s body to diagnose any evident disease. The next step is the real treatment and manipulation to solve the cause of the physical disorder.

What transformations have you experienced through your Osteo journey?

What I have obtained through my journey after many years, is an extreme understanding of people, a perception of their traumas both physical and psychological, this helps me to obtain better results. Without those understandings, the manipulations would be only mechanical.

What transformations have you witnessed in people you have worked with?

Firstly the reduction and/or the elimination of pain, which is the main reason patients come to see me. After treatments, I also see a psychological improvement of general wellness in the patient; especially the reduction of stress levels.

One client always came with a skeleton diagram to demonstrate the pain she was experiencing still one year after being in a road traffic accident. After four treatments she improved dramatically and after a few more treatments she said that “everything finally felt back in the right place”.

What has your greatest realisation or learning been?

The greatest realisation has been that I am able to help people and make them feel better. What I have learned in time is the importance of being in tune with and feel the energy of my patients.

What is the most powerful type of healing you have experienced?

I could tell many anecdotes, but one sticks in my mind.

I remember a 92 years old lady who was living in Rome and from 2 years she was unable to walk. After many check ups and doctors consultations no one would take the responsibility to treat her because of her age. I don’t believe age is important and the lady had such a powerful energy that when I treated her, after 5 manipulations she started walking again like she was 60 years old not in her 90’s. To make this lady happy and independent when everyone else felt that she was too old to be treated was one of the greatest satisfactions I have experienced.

Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?

Life is motion from microscopic to macroscopic.

The Earth travels around the sun as the electrons travel around the nucleus of the cell, therefore all is movement.

I advise people to move as much as possible with their body and mind.

What is your favorite music/artists to listen to?

I love songs that talk about life diversity and different moods especially John Lennon and Elton John.

What are your plans for the future, evolution of what you do?

My goal for the future is to have three different offices in three different places in the world. Rome, London and one on a remote island .

This year I hope to expand by opening a second office in London.

Dr. Fabio Gori on Facebook

Fabio Gori: drfabiogori@gmail.com

FABIO GORI

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Angelo Marcos Santos : We Are Not Our Pain

ANGELO MARCOS SANTOS

I went running today…

I planned to do my usual laps around the park, then I decided to do my push ups BEFORE running.

I got to the park’s outdoor gym and decided to go straight into Sirsasana pose, which is the head stand. Half way through the 3 minutes I usually do it for, I felt a sharp pain on my back, to the left, next to my spine, behind my heart. It felt like my lungs were pierced by my rib.

I had experienced this pain before and being committed to the practice, instead of coming off the Sirsasana, as I was seriously weakened in that moment, I decided to override the pain (NOT something I would EVER recommend to students however) and connect with my energy body, instead of focusing on the pain in the body.

We are not the pain in our bodies.

1.5 minutes later (and they always have to be slow seconds because commitment is there) I knew there was problem. I couldn’t breathe properly, couldn’t expand my lungs. I was fine though psychologically as I had encountered this experience before in life, so I knew it would pass at some point. Certainly no more running that day or for the next few days.

Annoying as it was, I had to accept it. I didn’t want to let go of the push ups, so after much slow breathing energy and Qi / Healing energy moving, I was just about ok to go down on my knees slowly and do my 100 push ups. Going down was painful but once I was horizontal and in the push ups, it was fine.

Afterward, I went straight home. And was received by Ama Lia Wai-Ching Lee, who saw the state I was in, as I couldnt breath properly or speak very well when I entered the home.

So, this is the point of this sharing…it was HEALING TIME.

She got into her Healer mode straight away and sent me into meditation. We were going to access the source of the physical pain, which is found in our Consciousness.

All physical pain has a source, not the physical world, but the spiritual world. Something usually related to past lives. Some kind of trauma in past lives has been stored in the holographic memory which composes our multidimensional matrix and this is what true healing is. We access the memory of the source or origin of the pain, we come to see it for what it is, we get empowered and the issue is gone.

This is ever lasting healing so I knew I was in safe hands of course. She is by far a healer that creates a field of transformation unlike any other healer, shaman or mystic I have ever met. Aside from Great Rinpoches or other more “out there” teachers.

So I am sharing my story of a healing session which just happenend. A very weak pain is still around, but the disabilitating grave pain I was in is now gone through 20 mins or so of healing. Just astounding how Ama is able to tap into source, to the field of infinite potential, and allow you to come to your own healing, identifying what it is the cause and why the effect has been such.

In this last healing session just now, I got a great gift, a big surprise and that is how magic goes. We are brought to a space where we feel reality, we see more clearly, the nature of life as infinite potential.

I have done 3 sessions with her, and been at close proximity with her for over 2 years now, so I understand her impact in the lives of others, and still it is astounding to observe the healing work that happens when she does it on me.

These deep deep traumas incurred in our past lives are blocks which we were born with in our multidimensional matrix of the self. So this is something that our personality is not aware of.

In each session I have done with her, what arises is either physical pain or some kind of behavioural limitation in life, ie creating abundance or having harmonious relations with others, and then it is seen for what it is. Visually, we jump from life to life, seeing karma playing out as it is, repeated patterns of behaviour happening from life to life, affecting us in ways which eventually prevent us from having our desires fulfilled. Of course, this is also a huge blessing, as we get to understand life and the way of the cosmos. Ama Lia makes sure that the healing done is “seen”, so it truly goes away when the pain or limitation is acknowledged mentally, emotionally and spiritually as a lesson, and therefore something to aid us on our path.

Once healed, our lives are truly transformed. Like going from being a slow car to a Ferrari. That’s how it feels, something that has been deeply traumatic in our souls history, is healed. To me, this is priceless and no money can ever pay for this kind of transformation.

Angelo Marcos Santos is a consciousness researcher, who investigates the limitlessness of the human potential through Arts, Science and Spirituality. He is a Yoga & Meditation teacher, Mandala Artist, Dancer and Boardsports Enthusiast. More recently a poet, inspired by anything and everything to do with loving the Beloved.

Angelo Santos on Facebook

Ama Lia on Facebook

Angelo Marcos Santos waterandflow@gmail.comAngelo Marcos Santos

Ama Lia Wai Ching Creative Healing Arts amaliawaichinglee@mac.comAma Lia Wai Ching

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Highlight : J’aime Leigh Gianopoulos

Photo by Chanel Baran
Photo by Chanel Baran
When did you discover an interest in photography and filmmaking?
 
Since I was 8 years old, I have had a passion for story telling. I used to create films with an old home video camera that needed to be plugged into the wall in order to film. I have always had a very strong imagination and vision.
 
What made you decide to become a visual artist?
My love for sharing a perspective or a message to others without needing to explain my self in words. My passion for mixing art forms together to express a feeling, a story, an emotion. 
 
How did you develop your abilities and methods?
I attended a film production program at the Toronto film school. Working on many sets in various departments, but most of all allowing myself to receive a vision and take all the action steps needed to achieve it. Building solid teams of artists and supporters who are passionate about helping bring the vision to life. 
What themes and subjects are you most drawn to?
The cycles of life. Indigenous wisdom and culture, Ceremony, Spirituality, the uprising of the feminine spirit, nature, sustainability and innovation, anthropology.
Photo by J'aime Gianopolous
Photo by J’aime Gianopolous
 
What does a creative shoot with you involve?
Focus, dedication, trust, passion, growth, openness, willingness to explore craft, make mistakes, and learn. 
Photo by J'aime Gianopolous
Photo by J’aime Gianopolous
 
How do you prepare for your shoots?
Preproduction organisation, bringing the team together, acting work.
 
Why specifically do you do this work?
I do it as a way to express the transformation I’ve experienced, witnessed, or the beauty i see. It helps to give me a platform to communicate my vision with the world. 
 
What transformations have you experienced through your work? 
Biggest lesson would be getting over the ego of the artist. When you complete a project you can always see a lot of things that you could do better next time. This at times stops people from moving forward and progressing or finishing projects. I was stuck at this point for a while. Now I respect each thing I create and I look back at 3 things I loved about the work and 3 things I can grow in the world. Those 3 things then become my areas of focus to grow and expand in my craft.
What transformations have you witnessed in others?
The healing power of what can be achieved when a group comes together and combines their gives. This goes beyond what one on their own can achieve. It is inspirational.
Photo by J'aime Gianopoulos
Photo by J’aime Gianopoulos
What has your greatest realisation or learning been?
To keep making bad paintings until they are good, and when they are good don’t get stuck in it. Just keep creating, learning, and really appreciate the talents of your self and all people involved. 
 What is the most powerful type of healing you have experienced?
Love
What is your favourite music/artists to listen to?
Mucho. Garth Stevenson, Akua Naru, Rising Appalachia, Julianna Barwick
Who are your favourite filmmakers/ or what are your favourite films?
Terrance Malik, Michel Gondry, Baz Luhrman, Miranda July
Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?
Always remember how precious life is and that life is a gift. Take the nectar of life from every moment and person you meet. Always find the sweetness and fill yourself with it. Overflow on to others.
 
What are your plans for the future evolution of what you do?
 
Currently I am in South America shooting a documentary about the impermanence of life, and working in the jungle with indigenous people of Ecuador.
Is there anything else you would like to mention or share?
Short film : HOWL

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Highlight : Beatrice Giampaoli & Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano

beayosscover

When did you discover an interest in yoga? 

YOSS: I started my path of inner growth with martial arts in 1989, then two years later, I discovered yoga. I carried on both disciplines for more than 25 years. From martial arts, I found confidence in myself or self-esteem. From Yoga, I received awareness and inner peace. Through the practice of both disciplines for many years, I have reached the conviction that happiness and the realisation of happiness only depends on our attitude and our self  awareness in everyday life.

Yossmartialarts

BEATRICE:  At the age of three I was already doing gymnastics, and I had always felt that movement is something precious. When I was sixteen years old, I went to India for the first time and there I discovered yoga as a way to unite the world of the body and the philosophy of the heart.

beayoga

What made you decide to become a yoga teacher?

YOSS: Teaching is sharing. I didn’t decide but it was something that I deeply felt in my heart: the opportunity to share the great joy and beauty of yoga with other people and grow together with them.

BEATRICE: I really do not feel myself to be like a teacher, but instead like a worker who, as a little ant does, wants to build a better world.

Would you say that yoga is a method for healing and is that why you teach “Yoga & Medicine”?

YOSS: Yoga is actually much more. Yoga is an ancient science of physical, mental and spiritual growth. Regarding our mind / body system, yoga provides great techniques for better health. However, a good teacher must know perfectly these techniques and in particular how yoga techniques work on the body of the practitioner, especially if he were to have physical problems. In our Yoga & Medicine Teacher Training we study both yoga techniques and the anatomy and physiology applied to Yoga techniques.

BEATRICE: I obtained a degree in medicine and I have done yoga for many years, so I am just following my personal passion for life ; that is sharing what I feel good for myself with others by studying in depth the movement and reaction of the body, and the floating of the mind.

What are the benefits of yoga?

YOSS: How long do I have to answer this? Countless ways. If we pause to reflect on our very existence, we can safely say we are designed to live in health, serenity, joyfully aware and in constant transformation. Yoga helps us achieve this.

BEATRICE: The benefits of yoga are both physical and mental. I believe that by being aware of your movement and your breathing, you can learn to understand more about your inside world. Which is full of light and shadow at the same time. This awareness can help you to be able to surf the waves of life better.

Why specifically do you do this work?

YOSS: What work? For me it is a great opportunity to be able to live by practicing what I love and to share it with those who want to follow me.

BEATRICE: Firstly, I live life as a unity with nature and animals, which corresponds to our inner instinct. By teaching yoga I would like to communicate this union to others.

How did you develop your abilities and methods?

YOSS: With a deep attention to everything I hear around me, both in the world of yoga and in everyday life. Of course I studied a lot with Italian and international masters. But in recent years my greatest growth occurs through reflection and meditation.

BEATRICE: Through practicing, studying and learning just how little we are, I have evolved. By knowing nothing, but capable of breathing and feeling our breath we can find a new way to face ourselves and the world.

How do you prepare for teaching your courses?

YOSS: I do not really prepare myself that much. Of course I have a rough idea of what I want to do in a classroom or in a seminar, but then I follow what I feel in the class and the responses of my students. Often, at the end of the lessons I receive thanks. I always reply by pointing out that I have not done the class alone but together with them and thanks to their energy too.

BEATRICE: I prepare for teaching by practicing yoga every day. Doing research and trying to live in the present as much as I can.

What is it like to teach together with another and how do you make that work?

YOSS: It is a great experience, support and mutual enrichment. It means to be open and fluid.

BEATRICE:  It is a wonderful experience to teach yoga together with another teacher, but it is not always easy to find someone who is on the real wave of sharing.

What transformations have you experienced through doing this work?

YOSS: I love teaching together, it help me lose my reference points, my certainties, giving me fluidity, lightness, flowing together with my partner. In life our greatest certainties can become our biggest influences.

BEATRICE: I have experienced that life is not yesterday nor tomorrow, but it is now.

What transformations have you witnessed in others?

YOSS: Students like to receive a lesson from more than one teacher simultaneously.

BEATRICE: Through yoga I have seen others achieve physical wellness, improvement of flexibility and better alignment of the body. I have also witnessed more ability of people to let themselves dance in the river of life.

What has your greatest realisation or learning been?

YOSS: Lots! Lately, I have felt deeply that I will no longer waste time and energy to change what cannot change, but I do not want to lose a little chance to learn about and change what I can change: myself.

BEATRICE: I have learned that life is a circle with death and that they are not distinguishable. This is the same for all of the opposite forces inside of us.

What is the most powerful type of healing you have personally experienced?

YOSS: Yoga

BEATRICE: Yoga practice has been the most powerful for me.

What is your favourite music/artists to listen to? 

YOSS: Eddie Vedder, and all the artists who express themselves and deep feelings with music.

BEATRICE:  “Spirit Bird” by Xavier Rudd is a song that means so much in my life path, and also”What if God was one of us ?” by Joan Osborne.

Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?

YOSS: Stop. Breathe. Open your eyes and see if anything has changed in the way of seeing the same old things. It works!

I think we labor to find pleasure, always trying to do new things, we should actually try to find pleasure in doing ever anew the usual things.

BEATRICE: My tip for happiness is to live in the present.

What are your plans for the future evolution of what you do?

YOSS: I’d like to communicate more and more my message and open more than the two yoga studios I already have. The challenge will be to best manage my centres, without losing time for personal practice and teaching. 

Together with Beatrice, we will continue to hold Teacher Training for “Yoga and Medicine”,  where the teaching of yoga is enriched by the medical scientific component, to ensure future teachers a broad and thorough preparation.

BEATRICE: I do not like to plan, I prefer to grasp the moment in life.

Beatrice Giampaoli
BEATRICE GIAMPAOLI
 

Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano Yoss Yoga Suite

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Highlight : Kate Surgey

KATE SURGEY

When did you discover an interest in healing?

My interest in healing began as an interest in preventing suffering. Being a small kid I remember saving our local ants from being killed by the boy next door. I couldn’t bear other kids ostracised or bullied at school, I often used to stand in and protect them – I was just more attuned to others feelings. I loved to sit for hours with my rabbits just stroking them. I knew I had this protective, nurturing capacity within although this was never reflected back to me and I could not put it into words until at 24 I had a powerful experience which catapulted me directly onto a spiritual path, opening doors that I didn’t know existed. I still didn’t know where I was going, but I just knew it made complete sense, and it felt like I had finally come home and found the direction of my calling. It ignited my heart and passion like nothing else.

What made you decide to become a healer?

It depends on how you define ‘healer’. We are all healers, healing ourselves and others as we go through life. But I was increasingly getting messages that the universe wanted me to work directly with people’s emotional, spiritual and psychological issues using spirit, rather than just my everyday self. I felt progressively pushed in directions away from more mainstream ways of helping others into more alternative approaches. Although for many years I was balancing mainstream jobs with healing others, straggling different aspects of myself like I was walking a tightrope – not able to really show my true self as I was somewhere still ashamed of it. Strangely, I finally went full time (with yet another universal push) when I realised that I was no longer resistant to my ‘day’ job or my everyday self – something settled within and the inner conflict was resolved. I had come to terms with life’s learning pace and had accessed a deep patience for it taking just some time. At that point, my transition and readiness to be a full time healer (without a day job), was complete and I found myself having a full client base. I needed a few pushes along the way and a lot of trust in my heart’s desire to do this work.

What type of healing work do you do?

This is a difficult question to answer. I combine many approaches from shamanic, astrological, the Earth Path (Soul Plan system), Process Oriented Psychology, body psychotherapies, and most importantly the Ascended Masters, Sacred fire and Goddess tradition. I don’t do hands on healing, but a lot of following my own awareness and feeling, working with pure intention, as well as invoking higher levels of consciousness. I align myself with what the soul is trying to learn and help the person also get aligned with that. But that’s just a small aspect of the work. Essentially, its supporting people’s Higher Self take up more residence.

What does a healing session with you involve?

There can sometimes at first be a degree of diagnosis and I use my awareness to follow the client’s process in the moment – what their consciousness, energy, body as well as their conscious minds tell me, and then let nature show me the way forward. I hold it all and see where the natural process needs to go. Essentially, the idea is to support a client’s higher self to show up and show them where it wants them to go to be happier. I have increasingly found that just about anything can happen in a session – from silent stillness, to expelling dense energy, to blissful states of consciousness and expansion to dragon roaring. Following the Tao means you never quite know where you are going and where you will end up.

How did you develop your abilities and methods?

In my 20s and 30s, I explored many avenues of spirituality from more traditional to some very contemporary. I went on many courses, read many books, worked with many teachers and I loved just turning up at lectures and talking with people. I have always been innately curious and so I just trained and trained. I wasn’t afraid to spend all my money on my personal development as I knew it wouldn’t go to waste and would pay off in time.

Why specifically do you do this work?

It makes my soul and heart sing, it challenges me in the way I need and it’s what I can offer the world. I am continually growing and learning about myself in this work, as well as learning about life and other people, and I feel like I’m a perpetual student. Also I suspect its the only thing I could do, I didn’t make a very good Personal Assistant and I don’t fit in the mainstream, so I figured I needed to go my own way and then bring the mainstream to me.

How do you prepare for your sessions?

I connect with my Higher Self, check in with myself, notice what’s within me and make no assumptions or judgments about whether it’s my own or my clients’ field of consciousness (as its all part of the same field). In terms of taking care of myself, I actively make sure I don’t invest too much in anything that lowers my vibration, but I also keep the perspective that my inherent loving nature is far more powerful than anything that could possibly ever lower my vibration, that way it doesn’t have any energy over me.

What transformations have you experienced through doing this work?

Both gentle and profound transformations. Some have been painful too. The most profound and positive of which was when I received my first ever Goddess Initiation. It shifted my consciousness to a place where I was finally able to experience love for myself. When I then started initiating other women through the Goddess, I then began to experience a deep love for others. More subtle transformations have come through my studies of Process Work – I am indebted to some amazing teachers and students in the Process Work community who have challenged, pushed and deeply accepted me.

What transformations have you witnessed in others?

I love seeing the penny drop in sessions or when people move out of their relationship polarisations and begin to access more unity and wholeness with others. These are sometimes very small and subtle transformations, but ones we never forget. I’ve also seen people in the midst of distressing emotions one minute, shift to a complete stillness and peace the next. Often it is the small transformations that feel the most profound and sacred.

What has your greatest realisation or learning been?

That’s a big question. To honour all life experience as our teachers, and that if we are wise enough and take the time, we can find ourselves in everyone else’s experiences at some point in our lives and that it’s less about changing who we are into something dramatically different and more about just simply reconnecting with our original nature.

What is the most powerful type of healing you have personally experienced?

The sacred Goddess initiations – the White Fire, Isis and Gate of Grace Initiation channelled by White Eagle of the Whirling Rainbow Foundation.

kate surgey

What is your favourite music/artists to listen to?

Florence and The Machine, Ashana, Eivor Palsdottir, Kate Bush

Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?

Yes, be curious and open about other people’s viewpoints and get interested in where others are coming from. With that, get good at knowing your own truth and listening to others’ truths.

What are your plans for the future evolution of what you do?

I am currently putting together a Spiritual Counselling training programme beginning March 2017 and we will be running our next Abundant Goddess Programme early next year, with my colleague Sage Emery. We also have our Abundant Goddess Community of women who with us, continue to spread the message of the Goddess and Divine Mother’s presence; grounding her presence in our own lives and that of others, which is the essence of all this work.

Is there anything else you would like to mention or share? 

Spiritual Counselling

The Abundant Goddess

Programmes and Retreats

Free Community of Women

Free Transformational Tools

The Abundant Goddess on Facebook

© Lightening Magazine 2016

 

Highlight : Krystina Inokai

krystina inokai cover

What type of healing do you do?

I have named my approach “Guided Self-Recalibration”. It is essentially an active and conversational meditation process whereby an issue or symptom is explored until disruptive patterns are identified and their root causes are recognized and dispelled. I provide supportive reflection and guidance so that the inherent healing process within an individual can recover and optimize. The process is subtle and organic, addressing the spirit while always respecting privacy and boundaries. I listen, witness, support, reflect and guide, holding space and gently encouraging the individual to take an active part in their healing. The goal is to ‘free’ and to strengthen or bolster those in need so that they may proceed in their lives in accordance with their soul’s fullest potential.

When did you discover an interest in healing?

Even before having the vernacular to express such an interest succinctly, I have had an inherent inclination to support and aid others since early childhood. I always felt that we were all born with gifts to assist ourselves and others in unique ways, and in developing and sharing those gifts we all contribute in a meaningful and valuable way to the beauty and harmony of the world and beyond.

Did you study with someone? 

Since my quest has been to come to understand the connections and interrelationships between emotional, psychological and physical well-being, I did not study with one particular teacher, instead I have taken a hands on approach, exploring various spiritual philosophies (including Mayan, Toltec, and Native American inspired reflective guiding symbolism), crystals, nutrition, herbology, acupuncture, and homeopathy, as well as researching psychological, medical and scientific observations.

How did you develop your abilities and methods as a healer?

It’s an ongoing process of listening closely, questioning and exploring ceaselessly, analyzing and reflecting, and practicing that which I’ve learned. It’s an integrative process that has spanned over twenty five years so far.

Why specifically do you do this work?

I feel that it is a great gift to be able to help others by offering the insights that I have learned. It is an honour to be able to participate in the overall betterment and well-being of the world by addressing the needs of one person at a time.

What transformations have you experienced through doing this work?

The nature of the work is consistently and constantly transformative as I was, and am, my very first ‘client’ and I continue to work every day in one form or another. I have witnessed and experienced a slow and steady increase in ability to live from my core (or centre being) in a calmer and more proactive way – even when ‘doing nothing’ – and perhaps, most importantly (as someone living with Lupus for 30 years) I am able to manage any symptoms on a daily basis without the need for medication.

What transformations have you witnessed in others?

I feel that I’d like to reply as a mom. I cannot describe the transformations (as they are the property of the soul and not for me to quantify or judge). However, if ever anyone has borne witness or participated in seeing a pained child or creature become soothed, and reach a place of calm and contentment where once pain was prominent, that is the ‘transformation’ I’ve been privileged to take part in. The micro muscles soften, the eyes shine, the spirit is calm.

What has your greatest realisation or learning been on your journey as a healer?

That everything matters. The ‘sacred’ is ‘mundane’ and the ‘mundane’ is ‘sacred’.

Can you please share some of the most powerful healing you have experienced?

‘Healing’ is not always turning sickness to wellness, but is like inhaling or exhaling—in other words, it’s found in the constant expression of the soul. ‘Powerful’ is relative to the moment and so each tender moment of mutual connection and understanding is ‘most powerful’. That said, one of the most poignant experiences was the making of a short film I wrote, directed and produced in 2008 (“Inner Mask”). Not only were my personal artistic goals being met, but everyone who participated—from Extras to craftspeople, my son and good friends—every single person went through a positive change in the name of ‘love’. The synergy, unspoken commitment, enthusiasm, support, courage and ‘miracles’ (i.e. coincidence and serendipity) abounded for the five weeks it took to create the film from concept to completion. Directly or indirectly every single participant had a positive life-altering experience during or shortly after the film. The film itself did not receive much attention from the film world; however it seemed to me (and to all concerned) that the process of creating the film was in and of itself a gateway to healing.

As a healer, writer and filmmaker; is there a link between these aspects of your work and life?

I feel that everything is connected to wellness. I don’t call myself a “healer” (since I merely facilitate and don’t ‘directly’ heal anyone). I also don’t define myself by the words ‘artist’ or ‘writer’, but I feel that my soul’s inherent expression comes through in work that focusses on communication and understanding, so art is a natural extension of my being. Everything is connected and related. It all depends on one’s inclination and perspective. It’s my intention to share every form of artistic expression that provides joy or perhaps even inspiration of any kind.

What are your favourite films on the themes of healing and empowerment?

I believe that all art carries the capacity to express these themes and I have enjoyed many films that have carried an inspiring message in one form or another (in film, music, books, paintings, poetry, etc.). In this specific genre, I would choose “Whale Rider”, “The Power of One”, “To Kill A Mockingbird”, “Dead Poets Society”, and  “Peaceful Warrior” to name a few.

Do you have one tip to share for everyday life?

Find the love within yourself and honour it at all times with gentle focus and awareness.

Anything else?

Find joy every day in at least one meaningful way (whether in awe of a sunset, the sound of a friend’s voice or the scent of a flower). Nurture your soul.

What does a one to one session with you involve?

It involves a preliminary contact to establish the needs of a ‘seeker’ (where I also describe what my process involves in greater detail and we explore whether or not I am the right person to aid the one in need). If the connection is ‘sympathetic’, we proceed. They speak, I listen. There are always tissues, water and/or tea available if necessary and all the comforts of a clean, happy, safe and artistic environment that I can offer. We delve. We explore. The quest for positive change is addressed as fully as possible. A session may be up to three hours (and I always book the time accordingly whether it is required or not). I may use a pendulum to ‘check in’ with a participant and to ensure that we’re on the right track or to make sure we have covered all aspects that we can for the moment or day. At the end of the session, we generally (but not always) do a ‘clearing’—affirming the dissolution or dispelling of negative influences adopted for the sake of survival which no longer serve the same purpose, but which impede ‘expansion’ or ‘expression’. No one leaves in a state of upheaval or distress. In terms of booking sessions, I have relied upon ‘Cosmic timing’ to ensure that I’m ready to aid someone when help is needed, and it has worked impeccably thus far for several years.

How do you prepare for a healing session?

In a sense, I never stop ‘preparing’. I too am always learning, always considering questions and options. In a sense, I prepare specifically by ensuring that my space is clear and clean, and that I am detached, ready to listen and ready to address that which I have been invited to witness.

What are you future plans, ideas projects as a healer and as an artist?

I have just recently self-published my first feature film script “Halocline” (which I have released as an e-book unto itself, as one might a play).  I’m in the process of editing and illustrating a children’s book I have written called “The Story of Henry, Wolf’s Bane” which is about a little pig defeating a wolf, much akin to my ‘battle’ with Lupus (which is “wolf” in Latin), and I have been asked to teach artists in the context of a series of workshops offering a holistic approach to business. I prefer to follow the heart’s journey rather than to make plans. There are always new and exciting ways in which to participate and to share in this amazing journey together.

Website Links:

“Inner Mask “(short film, 2008):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-18AQxdoCpU

“Halocline” (e-book available online):

https://homespunwisdom.itch.io/halocline

Thank you for this opportunity to share and to participate in the Greater Healing Community in connection with your Dream and Spirit.

Namaste!

Krystina Inokai

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Top 10 Yoga & Wellness Retreats

This week we are opening up our Editor’s “little green book” of top secret awesome yoga and wellbeing retreats.

We receive so many inquiries from people needing to take some time out to recharge, reflect and rejuvenate and wondering where in the world to go and do that.

Below is a list of personally experienced and recommend retreats where space is created and held for healing and transformation. Please feel free to respond or write to us if you have personally experienced a wellness retreat that was amazing. We are also interested in hearing from you if you are creating or hosting retreats.

Sunflower Retreats

A beautiful Italian Medieval village called Casperia forms the backdrop for a peaceful week of daily yoga classes, delicious food, cycling and hilly rambling. Conveniently only 1 hour from Rome.

I practised yoga there with Advertising Exec turned Ayurvedic Doctor and Yoga teacher, Jo Heath who is teaching there again this summer as the yogi in residence.

Casperia

Ibiza Yoga

Stay in a Balinese pagoda, a teepee or a room in a shared luxurious villa. Yoga classes are 2 hours every morning with a roster of world-renowned teachers. There are many healing holistic treatments on offer throughout the day as well as a delicious organic vegetarian lunch included at this wellness centre located next to beautiful Benirras beach on the hippie “quieter” side of Ibiza.

I trained there with Edward Clarke, founder of an experimental dance company called Tripsichore Yoga.

Ibiza Yoga

Yogabeats Holidays

Worldwide yoga holidays throughout the year with David Sye in The Canary Islands, Greece, Cuba, Ibiza and Dahab Egypt. I attended his Dahab retreat and found the combination of sunshine, moonlit desert meditations and red sea scuba diving to be out of this world. This holiday literally changed my life and set me on the path to becoming a yoga teacher myself. I also ended up assisting as an apprentice and making a lot of videos with David after becoming qualified as a yoga teacher. He is a truly amazing teacher and person.

Yogabeats

Desa Seni

A slice of heaven on earth at this paradise escape in Bali. Desa Seni is a year round wellness and yoga centre where guests stay in interior designed antique wooden joglos and eat organic vegetarian food grown in the gardens which surround the studios. The good vibes from the yoga and meditation classes also help the fruit and vegetables to grow.

I attended a powerful Satori Breathwork training retreat here, run by Dawn Delgado & Beau Robb of  Transformation Vacations

Desa Seni

PachaMama

Located deep in the jungles of Costa Rica, PachaMama is an Eco community setup by an Israeli Guru turned wildlife photographer named Tyohar. All sorts of wellness and yoga retreats happen here year round, the most popular being the cleansing, fasting and vision quest experiences. Community ground rules include one that all residents must gather to sit in silence in the great hall for one hour each day. This place is a jungle utopia for the inner Peter Pan and Tinkerbell, built entirely by it’s residents who also have their own school for the community children and their own monetary currency.

Pacha-Mama

Blue Spirit

A luxurious place to restore and unwind. All sorts of interesting wellness retreats are run here year round on a quiet beach in the un-touristy Nosara area. There are some great surf spots nearby and the yoga studio has one of the best possible views I have ever seen whilst meditating. It is an extension of the Omega Institute in the U.S so many of it’s retreats are linked to the Omega teachers and teachings.

Blue Spirit

Sacred Circularities

Jaguar Mary is a world traveller who runs these empowering hula hoop retreats in Sedona and in Bali. These weeklong retreats are focused on intention setting and workshops to expand dance and hooping techniques. I attended as a hooping novice and left that week with new friends, a fit body, trim waistline and surprisingly strong hooping skills.

Photo by Cadencia Photography
Photo by Cadencia Photography

Jungle Yoga

This place is so incredible, I almost do not want to share it! It was the most beautiful and powerful place I have ever visited and a magical weeklong retreat with world famous Yogi, Shaman and Singer/Song-writer Danny Paradise. After a one hour boat journey deep into a National Park you find a cluster of floating bamboo glam shacks and one large floating yoga studio.

We spent a blissful week practising and learning from Danny’s years of experience for 4 hours everyday and the rest of the time was filled swimming the huge lake, canoeing and observing the abundant wildlife. Every evening we had a musical jam led by Danny, with other talented (and famous) musical guests joining in too. I returned from this retreat the strongest and fittest I have ever felt in my life and still dream about it, hoping to return there one day.

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Lotus Yoga

A beautiful collection of simple tree-houses open to the surrounding nature yet offering complete privacy whilst decorated with beautiful antique Indian furniture. It is set inland from the quiet clean beaches of Patnem, Goa. Yoga is offered every morning and some evenings as well as a daily range of Ayurvedic and other healing modalities and the organic vegetarian food is delicious.

hut

The Findhorn Foundation

Findhorn is a world famous eco village and model of sustainability. Retreats and courses run all year at their Cluny College Campus and almost every week there is an “Experience Week” where visitors can get stuck into community life working in the gardens, the kitchens and care for the eco homes and Castle-like Cluny campus. It is a life changing experience and a very healing place. Many people who go there end up deciding to stay for years because they feel so happy and at peace there.

I trained as a “Sacred Dance” teacher there for a few months and loved it. I have returned several times since then to unwind and recharge and also for the annual Festival of Sacred Dance.

Findhorn

Cluny College

 

And here’s a bonus 11th retreat that I am on right now….

Vitala Yoga & Yoga Suite

High up in the Italian Valtellina Alps is an ancient spa town where I am on a family friendly yoga and hiking retreat specifically tailored to Parents and kids. This is run by a Nautropathic Doctor, yoga teacher and studio owner Beatrice Giampaoli and the “perfect Yang to her Yin” studio owner and teacher trainer Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano.

In my research, I found few retreats that welcome and offer comforts and services to help make it a relaxing experience for “Mummy and Babies or Mummy/Parents and Kids”.

I am being so held by the power of these magnetic mountains and have great babysitters organised so I can grab some quality “me time” for restorative yoga, hiking and soaking in the “aqua curativa” ancient healing thermal waters. Naturally, I am in bliss!

Bormio

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Highlight : Punnu Wasu

Photo by Heather Bonker
What type of healing do you do?
I practice a variety of healing modalities such as psychic surgery, reiki, pranic healing, chakra balancing/toning, sound healing therapy, shiatsu anma therapy, healing relationships with parents/children/partners, quantum touch, swedish massage therapy, Deeksha/Oneness Blessings, spiritual counselling, yoga, pranayama and various meditation techniques.
Why do you do this particular sort of healing work?
I have always been drawn to it and was keen on knowing ways to heal myself and others. When I was in my teenager, I used to have visions of sharing the healing “hands on”. At that time, I couldn’t really understand those visions as I wanted to follow my father’s dream of being a businessman.
When I started working as a healer, I suddenly had a deja vu and the same vision appeared to me- the one of healing hands, which I used to see in my teenage years.
When did you discover an interest in healing, yoga and kirtan?
In my early childhood when I was around 5 years old, I started sitting in kirtan with my father and then continued to learn from him. Seeing my interest in music, my father enrolled me into a Hindustani Classical Music school in aurangabad (Maharashtra) and while I was in my teenage years, I started attending yoga classes regularly and then began to have interest in learning various healing modalities.
How did you develop your abilities and methods as a healer and as a musician?
It took me quite a while to develop my abilities and methods by constantly inquiring, learning, practicing and sharing. In the beginning, I used to be very shy about expressing myself, but with Grace and the encouragement of so many beautiful souls that I have encountered in life; it became a smooth process to express and to learn again from the art that was expressed as music or as healing.
How do you prepare for your sessions and for your gigs?
By invoking the divine guidance and universal intelligence to guide, by thanking all my masters for all the knowledge that I have received, and also for the people who come to experience, I thank them for their presence, their inner beauty and openness to give me a chance to be part of their world.
Photo by Swami Arun
Photo by Swami Arun
What is your favourite music/artists to listen to?
I like many styles and genres of music such as: Indian classical/devotional music, kirtan and bhajans, mantras, folk, Sufi qawalies, Gazals, Bollywood/Bhangra, soul love songs, rock, rnb, hip hop, jazz etc.
My favorite artists are such as Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Pandit Jasraj, Nath Rao Narelkar, jagjit singh, Rahat Fateh ali khan, Lionel Richi, Nikki Bomba, Nahko and medicine for the people, Beatles, Jarah tree, Dave Stringer, Cynthia Alexander, Seal, Norah Jones, Ravi Shanker, Hariprasad Chourasia, Amjad ali khan, Zakir Hussain, Shiva Mani, Hariharan, Yesudas, Noorjahan,  Kailash Kher, Indalusia etc.
What transformations have you experienced through your journey as a healer?
In order to have the divine grace we need to help as many beings as we can.
My whole life has been transformed and is transforming through so much healing that I have also received by giving it. My relationships have healed in a major way, my spiritual life, health, finance etc. I would say that each and every aspect of my life has been touched with the healing. I am so filled with Gratitude.
Photo by Larissa Israel
What transformations have you witnessed in others?
I have witnessed transformations happening in many people, they have come to an understanding to see and perceive life in a holistic manner, their way of thinking has changed, there is a seed of growth, spiritual wisdom, healing relationships in a major way, health on all levels, finances and much more.
What has your greatest realisation or learning been?
To live fully and abundantly in each and every aspect of life, and to follow my dreams.
What is the most powerful type of healing you have personally experienced?
The most powerful healing that I have ever experienced is healing my relationship with my parents, partner and children- major growth in a spiritual understanding of life itself.
Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?
Yes, live life fully with happiness in each and every moment.
The outer world is merely the reflection of your internal state.
What are your plans for the future and the evolution of what you do musically and holistically?
My plans for future are to travel globally and share the love and healing through music and other healing modalities.
 Anything else you would like to mention or share?
Aside from my daily healing work and gigs at The Yoga Barn in Ubud Bali Indonesia, I will be at the following festivals:
Switzerland
Summer of Love Festival from August 26th to 28th
Austria
Yoga Summit Innsbruck from September 30th till October 2nd
Music and healing tour to Europe in September 2016.
More venues and dates to be confirmed.
Photo by YoGiada
Photo by YoGiada
Facebook : Bali Kirtan
You can find my albums on my website www.punnuwasu.com, iTunes and

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Melanie Rickey : Finding My Mojo

Melanie Rickey

Melanie Rickey thought she was well set for motherhood, but no amount of reading could prepare her for the complete loss of her mojo. Now, as her son Horatio has just turned two, that mojo is finally coming back…

I am a voracious consumer of words. I wish all my reading could take place in quiet contemplation overlooking a bucolic garden, but unless I am on holiday alone (ha!), when I can easily stuff my head with two Booker Prize winners in a week, it usually involves snatched time with newspapers, supplements and magazines. They make me feel like a member of society. I need them.

On the subject of becoming a mother, I used my voracious reading to construct a complicated personal philosophy. Month after month, for many years, I paid close attention to stories featuring mothers or babies, snaffling away tit-bits like a squirrel hoarding nuts for a terrible winter. From all this reading I gleaned that the whole thing would be a bad idea, a disaster for my life, but was something I nonetheless had to do. Every interviewee ever asked says that having a child has been the single most meaningful achievement in their life. I didn’t want to not have a meaningful achievement.

My bad idea / meaningful achievement is called Horatio, and he was two in early September. The sun shines out of his pores, he glows with goodness and life. We conceived Horatio using IVF, as I’m in a same-sex relationship with Mary. Two weeks before he was born, I fell and broke my ankle in three places, requiring immediate surgery to insert supportive metal to help knit the bones back together. In the end Horatio arrived via Caesarean section.

Thanks to all that reading, I was well prepped for the no sleep, no sex, sore nipples, saggy vagina, saggy boobs, loose skin and varicose veins. I was all set for the loss of my social life, to the point that a highlight of the week is watching Strictly on a laptop in the bath. I had the fat sanitary towels. I was a realist.

I was prepared for the fact that my career would stagnate for a while, that some friendships would fall by the wayside (my friend Brix jokingly said “see you in three years”), and my status would be altered, without consultation, from that of ‘person’ to that of ‘parent’. I was ready for all of that; in fact I was secretly looking forward to it. I remembered a story about the actress Milla Jovovich who let herself blow up to 16 stone while pregnant by eating lots of bagels, before just losing all the weight and bouncing straight back into movie roles.

So Mummy Melanie would be the same Melanie from before, but with a few new saggy bits and a gorgeous baby. I’d have six months off work, then come back better. It turned out the saggy bits also came with an eight-inch abdominal scar, a six-inch ankle scar, two stubborn extra stone—and a pronounced limp, served on the side. The health visitors came round looking for signs that I was about to go bonkers as I shuffled around on my crutches. I wasn’t. I was dealing with it all. But I was so busy dealing with it all that I didn’t notice the old me, who was so primed with dynamic moves, had gone. My mojo had done a runner.

What finally broke me was the day I tried to squeeze into a pair of jeans in one of those fashion boutiques where the largest size is a 14. I have been an 8-10 for my entire adult life. I looked in the mirror, made sure the changing room door was locked and cried until I was dribbling down my shapeless jumper. I cried for my pathetic vanity while acknowledging that to feel happy in myself back in the familiar world of my old life I needed to lose weight and get active, yet had no will to do so whatsoever. I thought about the packet of Jaffa Cakes I would eat while breastfeeding my son that night. I wondered if I might have post natal depression.

When Horatio was eight months old I asked my closest mum friends when I might begin to feel normal again. All three of them said, separately and emphatically, “two years”. One of them, Jane Bruton who edits Grazia, wrote me this: “Firstly, your body shape has changed, so you’re dressing for a shape you’re not familiar with, and is constantly changing anyway. You’re a different person when you’ve had a baby too, so you need to get your head around dressing for a new identity. I look back at pictures of me on maternity leave and wonder if I’d taken leave of my senses! It was a jumble of the old and the new me, and I never felt quite right. When you get back to work you’re panicking anyway about your brain not working, then you look around and think, aaaarghhh.”

My friend Yasmin Sewell, a fashion consultant, celebrated beauty and online street-style star had her son Knox a year before me. “I can’t explain it, but when he hit two, I felt like I had it all sorted.”

You’re wondering now what I did next. Did I take one look at my blobby arse, join a boot camp and get miraculously fit? Did I cut my sugar intake to zero, lose weight and start preaching about the wonder of spinning classes? No I did not. That is not how this story goes.

When Horatio was nine months old I tried to fulfil a long-held desire to dance like Beyonce. I signed up to Seen on Screen Fitness and learnt the routine to Single Ladies with the bootylicious Bonnie. It was fun, but my ankle kept protesting. Then I started yoga, which I’d done regularly for years, but I couldn’t keep up with my old class. In the end, I stopped fitness altogether until Horatio was 15 months old, when I began attending two Hot Yoga classes a week. I nearly fainted in the first one, but felt amazing afterwards and went back for more.

Two weeks later I pulled on my size 14 jeans and found they were too big. I foraged around the cupboard and pulled on a pair of old jeans—they fitted! Turns out the excess weight came off naturally with time, with just a bit of sweating and posing thrown in. My jawline got its old angles back, and my natural confidence began to slowly but surely surface in little bursts.

Why didn’t anyone tell me about this? Nowhere in my stockpile of information had I read about this natural return of mojo. Most people seem to force their mojo back with intense bouts of starvation, carb cut-out and exercise. Or else they pretend they have their mojo back with staged images of perfection, posted on Instagram. Is ‘wait 15 months and it will start to happen on its own’ actually the natural order of things?

I asked Dr Ellie Cannon, a GP who writes books about new motherhood—books that when you read them feel like she is your honest best friend, whispering in your ear. Dr Ellie hasn’t heard of the Natural Mojo Reboot, as I have christened mine, but concurs that it took her about two years to get back to normal after the birth of her first child. “I think that we are overly prepared for the baby to come. But we are under prepared for the physical and emotional changes that come with a baby. Modern parents think there is an answer to everything on Google. And when the answers don’t come neatly packaged they don’t know what to do.” Sounds about right.

Dr Ellie says she commonly sees people needing therapy to adjust to their new life, once they have had a child. “Psychologically there is still an expectation that women will take second place to their husband and baby, while their partner’s life carries on. Then before women have a chance to fully recover, they are onto baby number two. Of course for some women it is the making of them.”

For me, it is Jane Bruton who gave shape to the two-year turnaround when she said: “It was a jumble of the old and new me, and I never felt quite right”.

The return of mojo is the magical moment when the ‘old childless you’ and the ‘new mummy you’ finally connect and harmonise instead of fighting against each other. My son Horatio has just celebrated his second birthday. Watch out world, here I come!

Photo by Caroline Irby
Photo by Caroline Irby

Many thanks to MELANIE RICKEY for allowing us to publish this article, originally written for KIN MAGAZINE