Without a Map

Photo: Unsplash | Mantas Hesthaven

Once, you were completely held, by The Mother; Nature. 

You were safe, warm, enclosed and held in a way that never asked of you to first be worthy or to have to deserve.

You were nourished in a way that never suffered need

Your time was honoured and you were not hurried along or expected to be anything other than what you were, growing at your own pace, you were a season unto yourself, loved along that journey, and carried, and expected to do none of the carrying.

The question of being enough, or of being too much had not been born into your world.

There was no guilt, no shame, no sin, no need to become.

The mother’s womb, was your womb, you were whole and you belonged.

And then, you began to encounter discomfort, and the first alarms rang.  It was the first whisper of being too much, and your womb was not enough and you were too much, in what became your first movement. And before you understood life, you had to face your first death.  Birth is the first death.  And you were ushered along towards what was the ending of the way you had been.  And just before the very end, when you were being expelled through pain, and struggle, you felt the call.


This was your first encounter with fear, it was your first waking up to being disconnected, the first rumours of what would later arrive as being alone. The first sense of there being something terribly urgent and demanding, your first invitation to being a self.  It was your first arrival in a moment where you realised “I want to live, and this moment is asking something of me, and I am afraid. I am afraid that I will not be enough.”  And everything you had, and your belonging, was taken away, and you knew then your first loss.

And you perhaps had to struggle to get here. And perhaps you were not wanted after all. And the brightness and the coldness and the burning breath, of which you understood nothing, assailed you and introduced you in an unkind welcome, to surprise, to not knowing, and to a world of chaos to which you did not belong.  Even the sound of your own cries were new and harsh.

What trauma we face coming both out of and into this world.  There was no other way you could have come.  There was no other door.  The gentle sage one said that Pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses the understanding.  To come to a new place, to belong to a new life, we have to die always to our old understanding.  We have to forget.

And now, as you arrive here, in this moment, searching for a way forward, again in a womb you have outgrown, answering a call, following the star, you are asked again to face another death so that you can face a new birth.  You are being ushered towards an undoing, an ending of the way you had been.  The way that brought you here, and always had to break your heart, and unmake all your dreams along the way. You are waking up to a realisation of a deeper sense of self.  You are stepping half determinedly, half reluctantly, into a moment that is asking something of you, and again you are afraid.  Afraid the womb of your own sense of self will not be enough.  You are uncertain of your own depths, having forgotten your wings, afraid of your own shadow, knowing not that it hides your power.  You have let everything small and stern about the world clip your wings, and silence the voice of the child you once were, until, in the desperation to belong, you became party to your own jailing, complicit in your own neglect.  And now you say  to yourself “I am broken”.  The warrior in you weeps, and the child in you bows their head in shame. 

How did it come to this?

You were innocent once.

This moment is asking you to remember.

This moment will pass.  You are awakening to a new understanding, of the necessities of seasons and endings. Of deaths and rebirths.  Like wheat, ripened by long days in the sun, to be cut down, in your prime and to be threshed, to free you from the husk of your own ignorance in what was always meant to be.

You are the crown of all creation.  You are the dreams and wordless imaginings of your ancient ancestors, you are their prayers answered. This is your journey. But there is nothing new here for you. The secrets this place once held have become stale and ordinary, the mysteries  shallow.

But you need to go forward without a map.

You need to throw your hat over the fence, and climb over to fetch it, before you know what awaits on the other side.

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