She concealed ~ Deb

she concealed

“She concealed her longing to travel again, seeking for new adventures.” ~Deb

“I want the impossible, I want to fly all the time, I destroy ordinary life, I run towards all the dangers of love…” ~ Anaïs Nin ~

It has happened.
My Gypsy Soul is restless and she is longing to fly.

It’s been two years of feathering my new nest in Florida, seeking out my “tribe” and struggling with the current challenges that come along with relocating.
Now my wings are fluttering. My belly is aching. My feet are twitching. My fingers are itching.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my home, my friends and the glorious beach seven minutes down the road.
I actually live in a place like Paradise, and so many folks vacation here or have winter homes.

But wanderlust grabbed hold of me and I feel like one foot is out my front door.

I have returned to Texas for three weeks. I work here. I reconnect with my tribe. I dance. I laugh. I cry. I love.
My cup gets filled. My Gypsy Soul calms down, just a bit. She digs into her familiar lifestyle. She feels wild and free.

Yet now the time has come to explore some uncharted waters. Walk the path less chosen. Fly a new pattern. Swim a new Sea.

I am unsure where this longing will lead me.
But for now, I am counting the days until November when we travel to New York…my first visit ever. ~ eek ! ~
We will be visiting friends outside the city, so exploring new sights will be perfectly hosted.
And in the meantime, I feel better about revealing my concealed desires and longings.

Backstory about my photo: I drove down the road near my house, by the river with suitcase in hand. Wearing little of nothing, like you do when you go on tropical vacations.
I felt like I was running away from home that day, in such a hurry because thunderstorms were fiercely rolling in.
I was twirling by the waters edge, imagining myself in a new country. Eyes wide open, feeling free. My hand seems to be waving a strong good-bye.

But honestly, I am home. This is where I live and love.
This is enough. For now.
Yet when I listen to the song by Zac Brown, this line gets me every time:
“I got a Gypsy Soul to blame and I was born for leavin’.”

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She concealed ~ Jennifer

Sometimes she concealed herself for comfort

“Sometimes she concealed herself for comfort.” ~Jennifer

In many ways, I adore the Internet. Of course it makes ordering anything from books to baby food in the middle of the night a heck of a lot easier, but my gratitude goes much deeper than that. On a very personal level, the Internet opened up a whole new world to me; a place of art, beauty, and bravery. Thanks to online courses and lovely blogs, I’ve found kindred spirits and connected with buried parts of myself. These last few years have been rife with major changes. Some felt like breakdowns, others like breakthroughs. Being able to peel back my layers and document the stages I have gone through in the company of wonderful women has helped me see better on my path, even when my vision was clouded with hormones and headaches.

Sometimes it’s hard to show up and share, but it makes my day each time one of you leaves a comment. Maybe you have felt similar pain or similar joy. Maybe you were having a bad day and my post somehow comforted you or encouraged you. I love the fact that we can live anywhere on this planet and still be connected. At the same time, I feel myself struggling to keep up with the non-stop pace of the Internet. I don’t want to miss out on a new class, or fail to show up for a friend. I want to participate, witness, and support people. I want to keep growing and learning and unfolding. There are tons of beautiful blogs out there with amazing photos and soulful content. There are many fabulous opportunities and programs to sign up for, too. It’s inspiring and uplifting…except when it’s overwhelming. And I do get overwhelmed. As much as I want to be connected, I also need to be offline, in my everyday life of diapers and dishes.

Sometimes I’m so embroiled in what’s happening at home that I can’t muster the energy to get near a computer. Nor should I, for that matter. I want to do more than I realistically have time for. Sometimes I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. Sometimes I need silence. Sometimes I don’t want to look in the mirror and see myself, my mistakes, my regrets, my shame. Sometimes it’s just plain easier to conceal what hurts. It may not be right, but it’s reality. Sometimes I need to stand behind the curtain. Sometimes I need privacy to slowly lift a layer of darkness.

I’m still trying to find a balance between being online and being offline. I can’t be both at the same time. No one can. So wherever you are today, in whatever city or country, I hope you can be gentle with yourself. You don’t have to share everything or be everywhere. It’s okay to be human. Sometimes soulwork is solitary work. Other times, it helps immensely to be in the company of creative kindreds. Whether today is a day you choose to conceal or reveal, know that you’re not alone. The invitation is open to show up at She is Three anyday, just as you are.

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She concealed ~ Bella

She Concealed

“She concealed her desires and pains right here.” ~Bella

This space inside of my chest holds more than most people could imagine. My skin envelopes my rib cage, which houses my heart center. Some may call it my soul, but I am of the the belief that the soul is all encompassing and cannot be contained.

So here, where I bring my hands together to cover and protect, is where my secrets lie. The joys, the heartbreaks, the confusion, the growing pains, the love, the sorrow, the longing, the abundance, and the grief.

It is also a place bursting with desires and ideas. A place where seeds are planted for growing into big dreams. It beats to a rhythm beyond my control, yet I can bring myself to a place of peace by meditating to that beat.

Everything in here, stays here – save for a few of my nearest and dearest, who have heard it all.

I conceal so much in my heart space. It’s neither a curse nor a blessing, it just is. This space inside of my chest houses who I was, who I am, and who I will be. It’s sacred, so I guard it vigilantly.

Today I invite you to share a photo that encompasses the theme “She Concealed” on Facebook or Instagram using hashtags #sheconcealed and #sheisthreedotcom. Let your photo tell the story. Let the healing begin.

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She concealed

She concealed ~ September 2014 triptych

Pictured from left to right:

“She concealed her desires and pains right here.” ~Bella
“Sometimes she concealed herself for comfort.” ~Jennifer
“She concealed her longing to travel again, seeking for new adventures.” ~Deb

This prompt turned out to be very challenging and very telling for the three of us. We’ll be sharing the stories behind our photos here on the blog and we also invite you to join us on Instagram (@sheisthree). Tag your #sheconcealed self-portraits #sheisthreedotcom on Instagram all month long. Together let’s see how what we’re concealing can lead us to healing.

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She lifted ~ Deb

she lifted

“She lifted the expectations of herself and was instantly set free.” ~Deb

You know that moment when you say to yourself… “You are doing all you can do. And that’s good enough”?

This. Is. Freedom.

Recently I released some deadline pressures because I wanted to be early. On time. Or close to it.
But my content was not complete. Everyone else was ready for my story, but I was not.

I was brave enough to say so, and apologize for my tardiness.

This. Is. Freedom.

I admitted it, owned it and the moment I said it….my story began to flow.
The words came to me, and within minutes I was able to submit and bring forth my contribution…just in time.

This allowed me to freely walk away from the computer and enjoy my morning walk along the beach.

Because until I feed my Soul and release the pressures and expectations…my creativity is blocked.
There is no flow.

So let go.
Be gentle with yourself.
Let’s lift the hard expectations we place on ourselves.

And meet me at the water’s edge for some deep breaths.

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She lifted ~ Jennifer

Aug2014Jen

“She lifted her eyes to the sky and asked for help.” ~Jennifer

It was one of those days. The odd thing is that I don’t remember why now. I only remember the good that came of it. My husband and I had gotten into an argument. We were both tired and frustrated. To clear the air, he asked me to head out for a bit with the baby while he stayed home to make dinner with our little girl. At first I dug my heels in, saying I wasn’t going anywhere. Then I realized he was right. We both needed some space and we both want a happy home for ourselves and our children, above all. I saw that it was a gift to go for a drive, clear my head, and lull the baby to sleep. And so I did.

I drove down one particular road twice, turning around because the light on the sunflowers caught my eye. Flowers have a way of calling me and calming me. I parked and set up my camera and tripod next to my car, where the baby was safe and asleep. There were a few looks and inquiries from people going in and out of the building (especially when they realized I was taking self-portraits, too), but I didn’t let them stop me. Surrounded by flowers, I looked up and asked for help.

A few minutes later, a woman approached me and asked if I was a professional photographer. I always balk at that question. “Um, no, not really,” I said. Smiling, she held out a card and invited me to her newly opened flower farm just a couple miles away. She said she wanted artists to feel welcome to come paint and take photos there. My heart sang. I began telling her about She is Three, the self-portrait I had just taken, and Bella Grace magazine. It turns out she is a counselor and art therapist with an office on the top floor of the building outside which I was parked. I immediately felt called to give her the extra copy of Bella Grace that I had purchased and still happened to have in the car. Her kind eyes lit up. She told me she would put it in her waiting room for her clients to enjoy. Indeed she has. I’ve been there a couple times myself already. Now when I look at this self-portrait, I remember how I asked for help and received it.

***

In other news, I want to say how lovely it was to read all of your comments on our special post for the Bella Grace Blog Hop. There were so many that we’re still replying to all of them! Thank you to each of you for visiting with us. Each person who shared was entered once. My daughter picked a name out of the bowl last night, and the winner is: Kim Mailhot! Congratulations, Kim! Please watch for an email from sheisthree{at}gmail{dot}com later today. I’ll be contacting you for your mailing address! I’ll be sending out the magazine as well as special gifts from the three of us: two sacred stones from Bella, my flower photograph postcards plus some dried lavender, and seashells collected by Deb!

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She lifted ~ Bella

She Lifted
“She lifted all of her uncertainties and allowed them to fly away into the vast unknown.” ~Bella

It has been one full year since I joined Jennifer and Deb here at She is Three. What a journey this has been for me, for us three ladies who I affectionately refer to as “my sisters.” Thank you for welcoming me with open arms and for supporting me through my first year of soul work through self portraiture.

When I submitted this quote to accompany my photo, my father-in-law was alive and well. Today he is an angel in the heavens smiling down on us, probably dancing with my mother. I can imagine them laughing together and that comforts me.

What I have learned over the last year in my own personal work and from the last week through our loss is that life is happening right now. Every breath I take is a gift and I get to choose joy, love, compassion, kindness, and empathy for myself as well as for others.

I do worry. I do have everyday life problems and issues. I am uncertain at times. Today I look at this photo and see all of these things encapsulated within a pink balloon ready for send-off to my angels above. I lift and let go. My heart is much lighter knowing I have people on the other side waiting to catch my stories and comfort me from afar. This practice will now become my go-to ritual. Life is ups and downs. Once a month, I can go to this secret place in the forest, put all of my downs into a balloon, and let them drift away.

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She held stones, flowers, and shells

She_held

 

What a delight it is for She is Three to be featured in the first issue of Stampington’s amazing new magazine, Bella Grace!  It’s the most beautiful book-like publication.  We couldn’t be more proud to be part of it, and part of the Bella Grace Blog Hop!  In honor of this adventure, we’d like to share some of our secrets with you.  Times have been incredibly hectic lately, like the world is being shaken up.  We understand how hard it is to stay centered and grounded when eveything is shifting.  So today we’re revealing what we reach for to bring us each back in tune with ourselves and our magic.  By the way, we’re giving away a copy of Bella Grace to one lucky soul!  Details are at the bottom of this post! 

 

Bella_Stones

~Bella~

Stones, rocks, sea glass, sand, and crystals. It’s their energy that I am attracted to. Of the earth they are born, just as man was. The blessed earth we live, eat, and breathe upon. The magic and energy infused within them feed my soul and my cells. I bathe them in sunlight, moonlight, and holy water so that when I need a lift, all I need to do is reach for one. They comfort me in sadness and aid me while I pray or meditate. My stones are a sacred part of me now. I hold them tenderly in my hands and surrender.

 

Jennifer_Flowers

~Jennifer~

Flowers are my heart medicine. They bring me back to Earth, grounding me in the gifts of here and now.  They soothe me when I’m anxious. They comfort me when I’m sad. They always inspire me with their wondrous colors.  Flowers help me see light.  They hold it and reflect it in ways that catch my eye and cradle my spirit.  I can’t help but be drawn in by the sparkle of morning dew on petals or the way late afternoon light dances on stems and illuminates blooms.

The shapes and sizes of flowers are as diverse as us all, and each is beautiful in it’s own right.  Then there’s the scent.  Heaven s(c)ent.  The sweetness of violets for my daughter.  The heady fragrance of lavender for me.  And the wild, earthy glory of Queen Anne’s lace for my mom.  I hold these three flowers close to my heart to connect me to all that is divine, feminine, and true.

 

Deb_Shells

~Deb~ 

As long as my memory serves, I have collected seashells.
I know you are smiling right now, because you do too, right?
No matter what beach I walk, no matter where in the world of sandy shores, that perfect treasure always finds its way to the inside of my pocket.
The Sea speaks to me, with every rolling wave, washing ashore her bits for me to capture.
I pile them up in bowls, jars and platters.
I create dream catchers and art objects of whimsy.
I place them on my personal altars.

I enclose them in gifts.

I have millions. Yet I bet I can still tell you where I found that swirly, curvy beautiful gift from the Sea.
The Atlantic Ocean is seven minutes from my front door.
My sandy morning walk on the beach during low tide has become my daily simple pleasure.
It’s good to be me.

Shells find me.
I live by the Sea.

 

For a chance to win a copy of Bella Grace, leave us a comment telling us what you hold when you need to get back in tune.  Is it a smoothe, cool river stone?  A lavender pillow?  A shell held to your ear?  We look forward to hearing your secrets.  Comments will remain open until Wednesday, August 20th at 6pm Eastern Time (3pm Pacific Time).  We’ll announce the winner of a random drawing in a new post on the 21st.   Remember to keep checking back at the Stampington blog to find more chances to win!

P.S. We invite you to join us on Instagram (@sheisthree) where we’re using the hashtags #shelifted for #sheisthreedotcom all this month.  We’d love for you to join us on the healing  journey.   We’ll be right here on the blog on the 14th, 21st, and 28th of this month to share the stories behind our own “She lifted” self-portraits…   

UPDATE: The giveaway winner is here!

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She lifted

Pictured from left to right:

“She lifted all of her uncertainties and allowed them to fly away into the vast unknown.” ~Bella
“She lifted her eyes to the sky and asked for help.” ~Jennifer
“She lifted the expectations of herself and was instantly set free.” ~Deb

Be sure to join us on Instagram (@sheisthree) by tagging your #shelifted self-portraits for #sheisthreedotcom throughout the month of August.  We look forward to seeing you there!  By the way, there’s a giveaway happening here on the blog this month!  Scroll down to the bottom of this page to subscribe to receive new blogposts and you’ll be among the first to find out about it!

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She trusted ~ Deb

“She trusted the silence to keep her calm.” Deb

“She trusted the silence to keep her calm.” ~Deb

Sometimes when the noises in my head are deafening, I go to the calm water.
When my breath is short, I stand a bit taller and inhale as deep as my belly will allow.

When I am confronted with conflict, I hop on my bike and spin around the block a few times.
When my heart beats too fast, I lay down on the yoga mat.

When I am still enough to calm down the monkey mind, I discover peace.

I rest in the moment.
And I always arise with a fresh perspective of the situation at hand.

Speaking of hands…try this right now. (Thank you Bella for this reminder)
Place your right hand over your heart.
Now place your left hand on your belly.
Breathe in deeply, three long slow breaths.

Now, doesn’t that feel better?

So tell me…what do you trust that grounds you, calms you and leads you to peace?
I would like to know so maybe I can add it to my own list of self-care practices.

Namaste

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