Mother Nurture Postnatal Yoga Circle
The first Mother Nurture Circle has followed the nine month creative cycle, starting on the ninth month after the birth of my son Dylan Francesco. From November 2016 to July 2017, I have journeyed together with the most gorgeous, inspiring and brave circle of mamas, that like me were trying to find a safe and nurturing space to voice and embody this epic journey that is motherhood.
My intention in setting up this circle was to spread awareness on the importance of self care and sisterhood in the first three years of mothering, as according to many holistic and ancient traditions, such as Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine, three years is the actual length of the postnatal time (actually five for the Chinese system!), the time that our incredible female bodies take to fully recover from the immense work and opening process of pregnancy, birth and early mothering.
During my pregnancy I had read a quote in one of my favourite postnatal books by midwife Robin Lim: 'you are pregnant for nine months and postnatal for the rest of your life' - and as much as this might seem quite daunting to some women, I was so struck by this very simple yet powerful sentence that I embraced the change fully with great respect and love towards my new, beautiful, tired, slower, sometimes heavier but stronger and more grounded postnatal body and I am committed to spread the love and the support far and wide...
Each Mother Nurture session has been a real balm for my soul and an incredible support to my own inner journey thanks to the shared stories and the nourishing feminine yoga practices, yoga nidra, breathing, chanting, that have helped us to
and eventually 'rebirth ourselves' into our renewed and empowered mother-self.
An account of the whole first circle can be found on Instagram #mothernurturecircle and a new circle is about to start in 2018...stay tuned!
Mother Nurture is for you, to nurture the whole of you from the core of your being, so that you can radiate your inner glow and nurture outward to those around you from a more centred and stronger self, as by nurturing others from a place of fullness, we can feel renewed and nurtured too.
"The Mother Nurture Circle kept me together this year and will forever have a special place in my heart. During one of the hugest life transitions imaginable, this space offered me support, refuge and time to re-centre and begin the navigation of coming back to myself.
Yoga Nidra has become a hugely important part of my life and the sentence 'Welcome home to yourself' is how the Circle made me feel.
It was an opportunity for sitting with beautiful sisters, for witnessing and being witnessed. What a comfort to know that we don't stand alone in this mothering journey, despite the isolation and to feel the love and understanding from others.
It has made me realise that being in a circle of women once a month is vital to my health and well being and that all of us deserve that space." (Sarah B.)
"Even though the circle came to an end physically, it honestly still lives inside me, spiritually and is there when I need it - the memory of us all sat together, the warmth and non judgemental feelings, the honesty, the respect. I sometimes go to a yoga class now where there are mainly older women and when I close my eyes or feel relaxed, I am transported back to the circle and we are all there together and it makes me feel really good. I knew at the time that it was something incredibly important to me that it would stay incredibly important through my life.
I loved how, as the months went by, we all seemed to have developed a respect for each other and gradually there was more of an opening up and there were more conversations, more offerings of books and beautiful things. Each woman was her own world for the others to learn from and be inspired by...
The circle allowed me to relax, process thoughts and to deeply connect with myself and my body, as well as my spirituality. I found it really great when we focused on the womb during a meditation and it allowed me to process when I haemorrhaged after Rowan’s birth. I didn’t even realise I needed to heal from that but I did! There were lots of moments like that." (Lucy B.)
"For me the 9 months of the post natal mother nurture circle held me in a time when I felt off centre, loving being a mumma, but sleep so deprived and distant from old myself, not sure of how to take care of myself in the constantly demanding and relentless job of motherhood, and feeling fragile in the dark political times.
The Post Natal Mother Nuture Circle gave me a chance to connect with how hard this post natal journey was for other mums too. To take some desperately needed time for self care and rest, and to find strength together in our collective experiences and in each other’s amazingness.
I feel more ready to make a positive change, and do that though connecting again to the strength of mothers and the amazing job we do to help heal the world in a small way." (April I.)
"The Mother Nurture Circle was a wonderful experience for me: every month I was so looking forward to being there! It was the only time I have heard of a circle dedicated fully to mothers, where we can come and rest, be nurtured and support each other. Each time I left feeling so much more relaxed, rested and centered, and reconnected to my inneer guidance for the month ahead. Marinella holds the space with great authenticity and love, she is so precious!" (Julie D.)
"It was such a blessing to attend the last few of your Mama Circle sessions and to have had the opportunity to join the space that you created. To be listened to by, and to listen to, a circle of wonderful women that you held so wonderfully was a really liberating and nourishing experience... Hearing other mothers' experiences there gave me a sense of community as a mother and helped to put my own problems in perspective..." (Mo K.)
"Wow the circle has been such a clear catalyst for change and awakening for me, I am hugely grateful for the opportunity to have participated within it. I knew it would when I first heard about it and during the 9 months, but looking back now a few months after it completed I really can see it's strength.
Some specific things: I have become more confident to follow 'the creative me'; I have found a 'louder' voice - more comfortable sharing my experiences, a real self esteem boost; I feel really proud of being a woman and a mother and feel a greater connection to the feminine..." (Suzi S.)