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Healing with the Earth: A Five Month Journey through Grief to Joy for Womben
July 1, 2023 @ 1:00 pm - November 4, 2023 @ 6:00 pm
Are you wanting to heal in simple and nourishing ways?
Are you longing to feel a greater sense of belonging within yourself and with others?
Do you desire to feel more alive, joyful and free while also feeling rooted and connected with other women?
Know that you are not alone and that you can heal through the grief that we are all connected to on this home we call Earth.
Learn more . . .
As womben or womb bearers (those who have or have had a physical womb), we are gifted and challenged with the capacity to birth, to transform and to heal ourselves and others. These healing gifts are often latent in our culture because of the lack of intimate relationship that we have and our more recently ancestors had with the natural world. The Earth is our mother and we are all born of her as our collective womb as well as the wombs of our mothers. You are invited to return to the wisdom of the Earth as your body and your body as the Earth in a nourishing, gentle and powerful connection with the land, the elements, and all of who you are. As we come back together as womben and welcome each other into our depths we are choosing to say yes to life and to remember that we all come from mother Earth and we can heal ourselves as we return to a deepening and conscious loving and inquisitive relationship with our bodies and our environment. We have a uniquely different experience from those who do not have a womb and while we can identify with having various genders or none at all mentally and spiritually, we will be sharing in the experience of having a physical womb during this journey together.
Indigenous cultures around the world know these truths and still practice them and whether we are connected to our ancestor’s indigenous traditions or not, we can be in an intimate relationship with all of life. Here in Northern Michigan we acknowledge and honor the Anishinaabe, the original first peoples of this place and specifically the Odawa and Ojibwe. We honor that this land knows the language and culture that was co-created here with the elements. While we may not be from this culture, we are living here and we can also co-create culture on this land in our own ways that are guided by our ancestors and our intuitive knowledge. We will practice accessing this wisdom together and sourcing from our innate inner guidance.
During Healing with the Earth, we will also practice being present with and honoring our embodied trauma or the experiences of disconnection that we carry within our bodies as opportunities for growth and healing. While we carry different life experiences of loss from this lifetime and those of our ancestors, we will practice being present with our differences and our similarities in compassionate ways together. We will move with and through our grief breath by breath supported by the Earth and by the wisdom of the elements. With this solid foundation beneath us we can continue to awaken to our potential rather than shrinking and sinking under the weight of the challenges that we face. We are called to inhabit ourselves fully and to be wholly embodied as we take these steps together little by little. The time to embody ourselves and to come fully alive is here and we are here to support each other in our remembering and awakening to the joy and thriving that is available in each moment.
The Grief Wheel is a practice inspired by Tibetan Buddhism and informed by somatic movement and other embodiment techniques. Each month we will learn about and connect primarily with one element: Earth, Water, Fire, Air or Ethers which are the building blocks of life. In this framework, the elements are also parts of ourselves that relate to ways of being, aspects of our lives, parts of our anatomy, systems of the Earth and even emotions that we will be touching on in each gathering. There will also be guidance on how to address difficult feelings and emotions that arise as we face our individual and collective grief and how to take steps towards creating the lives that serve us as individuals and as a part of the collective.
Each womban will become a co-creator of these nourishing, nurturing and joyful gatherings as we get to know each other better and we bring our truth and gifts to each other. These gatherings will include simple groundings & trauma sensitive embodiment practices, practicing being present with the land and the environment, learning about and practicing herbal medicine, listening to our inner guidance & intuition, learning from each other’s wisdom and what we are growing into in our lives. Together we will cultivate our connection to and rest more fully into the web of support that we have both within and around us.
July 1st: Earth – Resources – Security and Discovering our Needs vs. Insecurity, Inadequacy and Confusion
Practices: Introduction to and entrance to the Grief Wheel, ancestral and past life regression meditation offered by guest teacher Nadia Elmagrabi, compassionate communication, and tea ceremony
Lessons: structure, stability, simplicity, nourishment, equanimity and generosity
Plant Allies: Dandelion and Burdock Root
August 5th: Water – Intimacy – Safety and Cultivating Trust vs. Fear & Over Intellectualization
Practices: Somatic trauma healing and embryological remembrance embodiment, learn about plants for protection and nurturing, and water blessing
Lessons: flow, rhythm, release, receive, e-motion, mirror-like wisdom
Plant Allies: Rose & Cedar
September 9th: Fire – Community – Sovereignty and Power vs. Despair, Hopelessness, Codependency
Practices: Embodied developmental repatterning, co-regulation of our nervous systems with plants & other beings, making healing oil & self massage
Lessons: presence, pause, activating aliveness and radiant discerning compassion
Plant Allies: Calendula & Lemongrass
October 7th: Air – Expression – Co-Creation and Joyful Collaboration vs. Jealousy, Annoyance, Anger
Practices: Breathwork, embodying joyful boundaries in relationship, finding our creative voice and sound healing
Lessons: acceptance, boundaries, spaciousness, expansion, all accomplishing wisdom
Plant Allies: Echinacea & Mullein
November 4th: Ethers – Connection – Union of Bliss and Emptiness vs. Ignorance, Denial, Depression
Practices: Embodied integration practice and ritual celebration, envisioning next steps in personal application
Lessons: wonder, envisioning what’s possible, surrender, all embracing and encompassing wisdom
Plant Allies: Tulsi & Anise Hyssop
Through this course you will receive:
Practice being more alive and present in the moment in community
- Connect deeply and joyfully with yourself and other womben in nature
- Resource your own inner guidance through your body
- Receive resources to take home and practice over the month between sessions
- Learn tools for compassion communication and embodied trauma sensitive healing
- Time to honor your body, the feminine and the Earth with other womben
- Learn about the Grief Wheel, a Buddhist model for healing through difficult emotions
- Learn about and practice cultivating ritual with the elements and the land to deepen your relationship with place and your own personal practice
- Learn and practice simple and powerful embodiment and breath techniques
- Receive resources to take home and practice over the month between sessions
- Learn how to move through difficult emotional states into more generative states
- Optional personal one-on-one check-in between sessions with Hilary to support your integration and personal practice at home
Each Session will generally include:
Grounding and land acknowledgement
Personal check in
Sharing about the stages of grief through The Grief Wheel with elemental, directional, body and Earth allies
Trauma informed movement & meditation guidance to address a stage of grieving
- Get to know at least two plant medicines in The Garden of Healing Connection and making your own medicine
- Time to simply be in nature with the elements on the shore of Lake Michigan
Group circle sharing
Invitation to personal practice each month
Visual StoryBoard and resources for each week
Closing sharing and integration
This journey is inspired by many traditions and lineages and comes largely from Joanna Macy, Ph.D, who is an author, teacher, scholar of Buddhism, systems things and deep ecology. She developed The Work that Reconnects. Hilary collaborated with Grandmother Kaariina Saarinen, a shamanic bloodline chief and pipe carrier, and offered an online Grief Wheel Facilitation Training during the winter of 2021.
There are also threads from Tibetan Buddhism, Somatics, Herbalism and Earth Connection including . . .
- His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Lama Willa Blythe Baker, Lama Tsultrim Allione
- Sky Otter (Bill Pfeiffer), Founder of the Sacred Earth Network
- Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, Founder of Body Mind Centering, Christine Cole, Found of Somatic Body Training
- Embody Lab teachers of the Embodied Social Justice, Somatic Attachment Therapy and Integrative Somatic Trauma Therapy Certifications
- Sage Mauer, Herbalist & Teacher of Gaia School of Healing
- All clients & students are teachers
Here’s what others are saying:
There are moments in our lives that we get handed such a heavy blow that it takes our breath away. For me, coming back to my breath and my body was very scary. In March my family and I lost our home to a house fire and I was utterly devastated. The pain and grief I was holding in my body was unlike anything I had ever experienced. It had been months and the pain/grief felt like it would never heal.
As a licensed therapist myself, I had all of the tools and support a family could need but I couldn’t quite shake the grief and trauma my body was holding. I came across this healing workshop at the perfect time and took a leap of faith knowing I needed additional help to shake these feelings. I felt incredibly vulnerable to expose my grief, my pain and my challenges. As a professional in the community, I was really scared to put myself out there but I knew I had to do something to start healing these broken parts of myself.
Our first class was met with a huge sigh of relief as I connected with other professionals in the community; who were there to heal too! Together we walked (sometimes felt like crawling) through all the feelings. Hilary guided us through meditations and body movement exercises that truly took me from a place of feeling lost, confused and alone to a place of feeling grounded, centered and empowered. I can’t say enough about this dear spiritual healer, that I now call my friend. Hilary is truly gifted in her practice. I highly recommend anyone who has tried all the traditional practices of healing to reach out and connect to this incredible workshop. You owe it to yourself to connect and heal. It is an incredible journey, I invite you to explore with Hilary.
-Rose Wilson, Counselor
I was honestly a little hesitant about doing this program because I wasn’t sure what to expect or if it would help, but I decided I would be open to the experience and see what happened. I am SO glad I did the program. Going through Healing Through Our Grief was so beneficial for me, I feel like a different person from when I started. I was at a low point, muddling through the one year anniversaries of when my dad died, and reliving everything. The guided meditations were productive and the program helped me make space for my big emotions and feel them, while also working through them to a deeper understanding of myself and how to tend to my needs with love and care. Hilary made space for each of us to be on our own journey, while providing loving support and a community for us to lean on. This program was amazing and so worthwhile.
I moved into a new realm of experience and awareness with Hilary. The combination of guided meditation, contemplation, body awareness, movement and sound was a delicious and nutritive feast for my heart and mind. By tracing the emergence of my physical being into the world I feel more connected to the creative process that continues to create and recreate me every day. What a beautiful gift.
Throughout my work with Hilary I’ve increased my capacity to love myself, and feel the depths of gratitude as much as the depths of grief. I feel lighter, more at peace, kind, and gentle with myself, and in so much gratitude for my life. I’m really grateful for how she showed up and met me where I was, and for holding her own intuitive guidance, and allowing our ebbs and flows to go with the plan or veer off the tracks as needed. I am so grateful for being deeply held, seen, accepted, validated, and supported in my process, allowing an unfolding with ease and gentleness and curiosity in a nonjudgmental space to move, feel excited, and be!
-Jessica Mortel, business owner and healer
Hilary holds a compassionate and responsibly shared space for learning, feeling, and experiencing a more integrative flow in relationship with our ancestors, the earth, her elements, and various layers of our human community – including the wild interconnected nature within!
Hilary holds a deeply authentic, grounded and generous human. I felt accepted and met right where I was with no judgment or expectations- safe. She shares powerful practices & tools, a way to live that connects us to ourselves, each other and the world and elements around us. I am grateful and inspired. Thank-you!
-Jenn Evans, Massage Therapist
July 1st, August 5th, September 9th, October 7th and November 4th
Held at Bayview East Professional Building
1053 North US-31 Suite 1, Petoskey, MI
and in The Garden of Healing Connection
(All within a few blocks of Lake Michigan)
Thanks to Rev. angel Kyodo Williams and The Embody Lab for this inspiring this payment structure to help make this experience more accessible. The scaled pricing offers three options rather than one fixed price. This structure makes it possible for more people to access the program, supported by the community and those who have access to more resources. Please choose the option that feels appropriate to you and your circumstances. You’ll be directed to fill out an application form and you pay at least $100 deposit to save your spot. This deposit is fully refundable until June 23rd and then $50 will be kept if you withdraw before July 1st.
For those with more than enough financial resources and a desire to support access for others to help rebalance systemic inequity.
For those with sufficient financial resources and who can pay fair value for the experience.
For those with currently limited financial resources who will benefit from access supplemented by the community.
This cohort is limited to 6 participants to have an intimate and fulfilling experience for everyone.
Apply early to talk about what financial option works best for you and
before Friday June 23rd when the application process closes.
The final payment is due before July 1st.
All payments are non-refundable as of July 1st.
You can also sign up for a free discovery call with Hilary to ask any questions and get a
better sense if this journey is right for you at this time.