For my 40th birthday, I got a rather unusual gift: a picture frame full of money and flyers for spiritual workshops. But I was more surprised by the words glued to the middle of this picture frame: A ticket for your new life
Clearly, my friends could see what I could not. I needed a change, but I had absolutely no idea where to start.
I married at 20 and over the next 13 years, I had four children. My husband and I built our own home and a business together. By the time I had our third child, I was taking care of the children, our household and the administration of the business. By my mid-forties, I was totally, utterly exhausted.
I felt unsatisfied and malcontent. And then I felt guilty because I felt unsatisfied and malcontent.
I was healthy, I had four lovely children, a husband, no financial problems, my own home and I co-owned a prospering business. But deep in my heart I was unhappy. Why?
It was time to take a closer look at myself. I discovered that I was constantly playing roles: mother, wife, friend, housewife, boss, employee. I had completely lost sight of who I was.
I asked myself for the first time:
“What does it mean to be a woman?”
I was alarmed by the way women around me lived. I could not, for the life of me, find an example of womanhood that felt healthy. I slowly began to discover that my life and the lives of those around me were defined by hard work, fear, violence, guilt, manipulation, control, illness and more. The whole system, seemed to be made by men for men. There were no feminine examples of the real meaning of womanhood. Even the spiritual paths I’d been following were made by men.
In 2009, I joined my first Awakening Women retreat. When I first met Chameli, something opened inside me. It was a recognition. During the retreat, I learned:
- We are wonderful and beautiful as we are, we can stand by our feelings and longings.
- It is time to love ourselves how we are.
- It is time to fill our everyday lives with joy, fun and lightness.
- It is time to listen to our hearts and follow them without compromise.
I was thrilled to hear Chameli speak about how she found a spiritual path created by women for women. After just a week it was clear to me: this is my way. For the first time, the woman in me felt seen, heard and accepted. My whole being felt nourished, filled and happy.
I was afraid I’d lose this feeling after the workshop ended but now, I’m part of the Awakening Women global network, so I can walk this path with other brave and conscious women. It helps to know that I don’t have to do this alone. I can ask for help. I can take it easy. I’m unbelievably thankful to be part of a group of women who are invested in their relationship with themselves and who establish loving connections to other people.
How did you come the the Awakening Women community? What led you here?
Renate Wernet is a graduate of the Womens Temple Group Facilitator training and a dedicated team member on the Awakening Women events in Germany. She leads Women’s Temple event, and supports women in healing and awakening.
Translated with the help of Antje Wodtke
Image by Bibbi Friman