I first became interested in Abby Seixas’ women’s groups, based on her book Finding the Deep River Within: A Woman’s Guide to Recovering Balance and Meaning in Everyday Life, after I had my 2nd child and felt a little like life was not my own anymore. Life was busy. There was always something to do – feed one child, read to the other, wash the dishes, go to work, return the phone call, reply to the email, fix the dinner, do the laundry; God forbid my husband wanted any time from me! I found it hard to grasp hold of who I thought myself to be other than “mom” to my two children. I was a little depressed and found myself impatient, short-tempered, and at times, very angry.
The first time I participated in a Deep River group, my goal was simply to find joy and delight in my children again. Instead of focusing on the stresses of my daily life, I started focusing a little more on taking time out to nurture myself. Sounds easy enough, right? Wrong. This was not an easy task. Whether it is personality, personal issues, cultural pressures on women, or just the sheer business of life these days, I found it very difficult to carve out time for myself. Joining the Deep River group, I found out I was not alone with the question: “How to mother me?”
The seven-week Deep River™ workshop outlines six practices to help women slow down, take time to check-in with themselves, be present to the moment and the depth of experience that is happening in the now, instead of whisking it away by doing the next thing on the long to-do list we have frantically created for ourselves. What comes of this is an inner sense of balance and faith that we are living an authentic life. Taking time to go inward seems very counterintuitive and counter-culture. But taking time to go inward – breathe, stretch, have a cup of tea, meditate, or just simply be on a daily basis is the secret to joyful living, not to mention a good value and practice to pass down to my kids.
For information on the upcoming Deep River™ workshop, see the Lifeworks Event page here.