My path looked like this....yours will be different, but the same in that it will reflect your inner knowing and body wisdom. It will be you taking yourself into the depths of your being and remembering who you are and all the power you maintain.
I would like to begin by reminding women that we are all Priestesses. You do not need to get some special initiation to use these powers. It is your birthright. You may not be a priestess who holds ceremony or even ignites other priestesses, but you are Priestess of your own Body Temple and the Spirit of your Unique Soul. It has been such a long time of being held down and held back and restricted that we do not much remember our powers. Now, we have the pretense of being freely allowed to use them, but they have been captured, demeaned, down-graded and re-packaged so that we don't even recognize them as our own anymore....and we certainly cannot remember how to use them. In this world of user manuals and experts in fields that we didn't even know existed, it is much easier to look outside ourselves for answers than to look inside ourselves for knowledge. In fact, it is encouraged. We are taught to doubt ourselves and to trust the established “facts” that are ever-changing and funded by people who gain when we lose. We have become pawns in a game that really has nothing to do with us and has everything to do with some company somewhere making money, yet people just like you and me will fight tooth and nail to defend those companies and to battle against their fellow human beings. But this is too important. The one thing women have always had that has not yet been able to be taken from us is that we are the keepers of the wombs of life.
Whether you have had many children, have no desire to have a child, have not the ability to become pregnant or sustain a pregnancy, have one child, have adopted a child or have used medical means to become impregnated, doesn't matter. You are a woman and you are the keeper of life. The creative depths are in you and you are able to tune into them at any point in time. For the purpose of this writing, I am wanting to share my own path of tuning in and becoming pregnant, but this can work for almost any manifestation you desire in your life. The trick is to stay aligned with your highest Self and to remember who you Are. This is not just for some women, this is for all women. This is for You.
Like most women here in America, I was raised in a patriarchal society under the pretense that I was free and equal to my male counter parts. I did not know the ways in which patriarchy was embedded in my life or schooling or even in the ways I was raised by my single, seemingly independent mother. I thought I was free. I have traveled far on this path and by the time I decided I was ready to have a child and had found my other half who also wanted to have a child and with me, I was 35 years old. I was almost 36. I managed to mostly tune out the fearful speak about my age and how I wasn't 20 anymore, but I had my own fearful speak that I was not a very fertile being. I had never before become pregnant and had watched as other women had accidentally had that happen, sometimes multiple times. I did not feel that I was an overly fertile person. My partner had a child from a previous relationship, so at least he appeared to be fertile and we began the process of trying the way I imagine most people do, by simply deciding not to use any method of birth control anymore.
I was not aware of my Moon cycle at this point, I had no idea if it was regular and often was stumped at the doctor when they asked “date of last day of period”. I only remembered the “ten day rule”. You were in danger (obviously a rule I was taught when the goal was to not get pregnant!) of becoming pregnant ten days after the first day of your Moon cycle and for ten days from then. After that, you were free again. Little did I know I was about to learn a new rule, the “six day rule”....that there are literally only six days you can get pregnant a month and out of those really only on three do you stand a chance. The day with the most chance was 30 % , assuming you did it right and on time and are fertile. After three months of trying the free-for-all method, I was due for a routine check-up and I told the nurse-midwife I was going to that we were trying. She asked if I was checking my cervical mucous. I knew only that one other friend had mentioned this mucous to me and that clearly it was important. She gave me some charts and a brief description of what that would look like and off I went. I was confused and not very good at this new task I had. It seemed kind of clinical and I wasn't sure I was getting it right. It took me a couple months to really see the stretchy egg-white stuff and then I just wanted it to be at the same time every month so I could stop checking. I did finally find out that I had a regular cycle, but it started to dawn on me that I had completely left my feminine care up to doctors and nurses and products from the drugstore. Quite frankly, the men that I had partnered with in my life knew more about my female anatomy than I did.
This was a huge wake-up call. I was a yoga teacher, practicing Ayurveda and very “spiritual” in my own eyes. I was even devoted to the Divine Mother, and yet had very little understanding of the feminine beyond the emotional and intellectual plane. Much of the yoga I practiced was founded in masculine roots, taught to me by mostly men, and I was becoming aware that this deep understanding of the feminine body was a spiritual wisdom in itself. I needed to move beyond sexual knowledge and into a self-knowledge that included all of my being.
As month after month passed with my Moon arriving on time, I became more and more committed to trying to chart this cycle of mine accurately. My friend who had first mentioned the cervical mucous to me became pregnant on the first try and lent me a book by Toni Weschler, MPH called “Taking Charge of Your Fertility.” I found the book invaluable at answering questions and helping me understand the ins and outs of the charting process. I learned so much and yet still I did not get pregnant. By the end of the summer I felt frustrated by the process and my now-husband and I were becoming bored with the sexual routine of only doing it when I was supposedly ovulating.
As summer turned into Fall, I began to turn my intellectual energy more towards the path of the feminine and “becoming a priestess” whatever that may mean. As the annual fall Durga Puja, or Navaratri began I signed up to follow the nine nights of the Goddess Mother with a teacher of mine, named Laura Amazzone. I had taken several of her classes before and trusted her authenticity with ancient Indian and Nepalese tantric studies. I had wanted to go on her actual pilgrimage to Nepal but the earthquake that happened just a short time before had caused the trip to be cancelled and she was turning to the internet as an alternative. I got my Calasha, my sacred pot, and all the other tools I would need and devoted myself wholeheartedly to this experience. I offered forward my true prayer to become pregnant, but also my profound understanding that it may indeed not be part of my path in this life to become a mother to one specific child. As a servant to the divine, it is not clear what we need or will get in this world, it is only our pure wish that we may fulfill our dharma and be on the path that best serves the greater good. I felt this truly and wholly as I stepped forward into the nine nights honoring the intense battle against dark forces within and without that Durga must fight to liberate us from the bondages of fear and delusion. As each night passed, I felt my own prayer fill me and the power of all women with me. We are all One. At the close of the nine days, my husband and I planted what we called “the baby bead” in our calasha, using the water from the ceremony. Our baby bead was a rudraksha seed that we had collected on our honeymoon to Kauai and our visit to the Hindu monastery there. In their rudraksha forest, we collected 108 bright blue seeds still in their casing (we live on the islands, so we were allowed to travel with them, otherwise you will not be able to do this) and 1 Guru bead to make a full mala, and 1 baby bead to plant a new tree at home. Our hope was that as the seed grew in the calasha, we would also have a seed growing inside of me. Unfortunately, the seed in the calasha never sprouted.
By December, I had completely relinquished my deep attachment to getting pregnant each month. I began to initiate sex at times that I was not ovulating, and I was pretty much over the process of carefully charting my cycle each month. I felt deep within myself that if it was to happen, it would come from a surrender, not a neurotic frenzy. I had already shifted my yoga practice to become more feminine and to listen to my body wisdom not the “teachings” that patriarchy had so diligently passed on to me. I was focusing less on my career and external responsibilities and beginning to take my role as a Priestess of my own Self very seriously. One thing that kept rising to my attention was that my Moon was always falling on the Full Moon. I had heard numerous wisdoms that said that this was considered to be more of a Priestess cycle and that the Mother cycle or fertile cycle was to bleed on the New Moon. While many women bleed off the Moon's cycle who live in cities and take in light pollution and live lives that are far detached from nature, I was living off-grid in Hawaii without any of these hindrances. In fact, despite my lack of knowledge before about how many days my cycle was or when I was ovulating, I had always known that when I was in my best health and living naturally, I tended to bleed closer to the Full Moon. I had always thought that was when most women bled.
I began to look into ways to “move” my cycle. The thing that caught my eye was to use gemstones; I'm a Vedic Astrologer and felt connected to this methodology. I did my research both from a Vedic perspective and from many other perspectives and found that Moonstone is said to draw woman's cycle to the Moon's cycle. I had also heard of other societies and cultures using waist beads for fertility, so I found a maker of waist beads (conveniently named Moon) on Etsy, and commissioned her to make me a set with Moonstone, Pearl and Aventurine. There are several stones that “promote fertility” but for me Aventurine was seeming the most astrologically-sound fit as well as my own preference. I received the beads on the Full Moon in December 2015, only to have my blood come hours later. I charged them by the light before placing them around my waist. I wore them consistently for a month and found that for the first time since I had been charting my cycle for 9 months, I had my next Moon after only 23 days....I could feel that something was shifting. The next month, my blood came after only 22 days. It was my friend's Blessing Way ceremony for her soon-to-be-born baby that had been conceived on her first try. I felt sadness as I stood in circle with women who were all either pregnant, had children, or were past the child-bearing age and had their children a long time ago. I was one of only three women who did not have any children and the other two were much younger than me. At the end of that day, I told my friend about my waist beads and how even though I had gotten my period, I was feeling the shift towards the New Moon. She told me she had worn waist beads and prayed to Isis before she had even tried to get pregnant and that her and her partner had gone to a fertility ceremony with pagan roots, Beltane, also right before they tried.
As the month progressed, I found myself sharing with others what I was going through. I felt better each time I did. By opening myself and my struggle up to others I found that there were so many women who had been through the same thing. I found support and advice and new ideas of what had worked for them or someone else they knew. I found that it took me out of the closet of shame that we women are so often put into, that something is wrong with us or we are somehow flawed, when in fact it is the society around us that is so deeply out of sync with Nature. The following month my moon came on the day of the New Moon and I felt something totally shift within me. Two weeks later I got pregnant as I ovulated with the Full Moon, a month before my 37th birthday, and even though I waited till my period was overdue 8 days from my normal cycle because I was so afraid of taking a test and it being negative, I knew in my heart and my husband knew too, that it had finally happened. I had become pregnant. Hapai, they say in Hawaiian, to carry the breath of life.
By finally relinquishing my control and all of the rules that society set out for me to aid me in getting pregnant, I had stepped into the place within myself where I knew what I needed to do. I had offered up my journey and struggle to something beyond me, let go of my shame and fear, and tapped into that wisdom that lies in each one of us, woman and man. We all have it. Women have it in spades. It has been so long kept hidden and shunned that most of us have forgotten it's there. Even in pregnancy and childbirth itself, the most magical and powerful time of a woman's life, we are being taught to ignore that inner knowing and to succumb to the rules and dictates of what modern medicine and society tells us is good for us and our baby. But no more. I will listen to the rumble no more. I was fortunate to be able to find this power as a means to even becoming pregnant, so there was no way I would let go of it with my baby in my womb. I will give birth in a month and a half and I will embrace my Goddess-given right to bring life into this world, and my wish is that all women everywhere will embrace their right to bring to life what their truth is in this world. We are the keepers of the Wisdom. It is within us. It is in our womb, whether we still have the physical womb or not, and it is in our blood, whether our blood still drops towards the earth or not. Blessed Be and Jai Ma! Victory to the Divine Mother!