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Under Pressure

Sister,

When was the last time you were brought to your knees?
Literally or figuratively?
There is you, in one corner.
And there is that next step that you need to take, in the other corner, looking more like your opponent than your ally. You know you have to get yourself up and take it, but that next step seems so impossible, or you are just so tired, disappointed, overwhelmed, exhausted, defeated, and you just do not, I tell you, do not have it in you to even move.

When at that crazy crossroads, how do you find the strength to go on?

I just got back from a trip to Spain, with my daughter Maggie and a group of parents, kids, and teachers. We hiked the Camino de Santiago, in Galicia, the northwest part of Spain, which is a centuries-old pilgrimage, with pre-Christian roots, that leads to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. We travelled 115 kilometers in 6 days.
And yes, it was a pilgrimage.
There is no other way to describe the sense of being utterly lost, and utterly found.
I am not what you might call an experienced hiker.
Walking around New York City thinking I walk a lot is not hiking.
Not even close.
Hiking is to walking like a river is to a puddle. No comparison.
Honestly, at the end of each day I did not know if I could finish, and my feet felt like little sandbags attached to wooden sticks.

Beforehand, I was picturing a merry walk with friends, la la, ha ha, whee, as we strolled arm in arm in the sunshine.
This was not the case.
The rain is Spain has not stayed mainly on the plain.
Spain is having the wettest spring in history, with triple the rainfall. There is flooding everywhere, including the Camino. So our little band of pilgrims were slogging through freezing rain, mud, streams, every day, sometimes all day, sometimes parts of the day, hail storms, thunder, and lightning. We had to squat to pee on roadsides. We would stop for a quick lunch, lifesaving cafe con leche and then, march on.

My hiking boots were soaked and could not dry.
Blisters had to be taped up on my feet and Maggie’s feet.
Some of our group were taken out, feet blistered so badly, they could not complete the hike.
But, amazingly enough, as wrecked as I thought I was, my body would restore over night, and I could go on.
I forced myself to stretch and do push-ups and sit-ups each morning so I could unwind my muscles and keep a strong core.
I would plug in my iPod and play my theme song.
“Under Pressure” by David Bowie and Freddie Mercury.
I have been obsessed with this song for months. It took me through the whole pilgrimage that was the launch of Spring Mastery. And now, this pilgrimage.

As I am sure you know and have experienced, there is always one day—one moment of one day—on which all the preceding days rest, and on which all the following days depend.
How do we show up inside that one moment of that one day?
Do we haul our ass up from our tired, disappointed, overwhelmed, exhausted, defeated corner and head over to the corner where our next step lies?
Or not?
Let me take you inside my moment:
So, it is day five of bad weather. We are at about 109 kilometers. My everything is soaking wet, including my underwear. I have walked past my limit about 20 miles ago. In the last days, I have been through pelting hail, rain, thunder, and watched the path under me turn into a muddy stream. I am hiking alone, but my buddies Nick and Kenny see me and wait up for me. I have had “Under Pressure” on repeat for the last hour, since I am busy learning the words for an upcoming entrance at Mastery. Nick knows that I am working on the song and asks me, just at the right moment, to tell him the lyrics. I offer to sing them. Figuring it will be good practice for my upcoming debut this weekend…
We are slogging up a hill, and I launch, a cappella:

Pressure, pushing down on me
Pressing down on you, no man asks for
Under Pressure
That burns a building down
Splits a family in two
Puts people on streets

Umm bah bah bay
That’s okay!

And the lyrics seize me. This song is my life. Right now. I give it my all. I channel Freddie.

It’s the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming let me out
Pray tomorrow takes me higher
Pressure on people
People on streets

Day day day
O-kay!

Chippin’ around
Kick my brains ’round the floor
These are the days
It never rains but it pours

Can you believe these words?

Turned away from it all
Like a blind man
Sat on the fence but it don’t work
Keep coming up with love
But it’s so slashed and torn
(Why, why, whhhhhyyyy??)
Love love love love
Insanity laughs under pressure we’re cracking

And then, finally, my forlorn, exhausted heart cracking open, breathless from the hill, I choke out this verse:

Can’t we give ourselves one more chance?
Why can’t we give love that one more chance?
Why can’t we give love give love give love?
Give love give love give love give love give love

Cause love’s such an old-fashioned word
And love dares you to care
For the people on the edge of the night
And love dares you to change our way
Of caring about ourselves

This is our last dance
This is ourselves under pressure
Under pressure
Pressure

And just as I finish my emotional rendition, with Nick and Kenny tearing up as we climb, Nick and I see a tractor, hauling logs, roll past us. And the license plate on the tractor says, “Love.”
No kidding.
We get a sign from the GPS on the back of a tractor.
Love.

“Love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves.”
Which is really what a pilgrimage is for.
And a pilgrimage is a journey of spiritual significance. It can be a journey to an actual location, like the Camino, or it can be a metaphorical journey, which tests our own beliefs and faith in ourselves. Every time we hit that “I can’t go on” place, we are on a pilgrimage of sorts. And the faith to continue comes from accepting the dare—from love, herself—to change our way of caring about ourselves.
I am such a rebel that it’s always gotta be a dare that brings the best out of me, and pulls me out of my doldrums into that next step.
And the thought of love as the one who dares us, pleases the shizz out of me.
And the dare to change my way of caring about myself inspired me to cross the finish line and make it all the way to Santiago de Compostela.
So did my daughter, Maggie.
I am so proud of her.
When we arrived at the Cathedral, the tradition is to go up to the altar and hug the golden statue of St. James. I hugged him so hard and hung on his jewel encrusted neck like he was my long lost lover, and I am damn sure he hugged me back.
There is no better feeling than being pressed into a new iteration of yourself, and accepting the dare to say, “YES!”

Every woman faces a seemingly insurmountable challenge in her life at one point or another. We fall to our knees in grief, disappointment, despair… We resist our darkness or feel overcome by it, when really, it holds our most potent power. So I dare you to do the last thing you feel like doing in that precise make-or-break moment. I dare you…to party. Decide that wherever you are is the right place to be. It’s one of the founding principles of Mama Gena’s School of Womanly Arts, and you can get the full explication here (see page 5), in the first chapter of my book, Mama Gena’s School of Womanly Arts:

There is so much power in traveling abroad.
I loved this trip, and I can’t wait until next month when I get to take my entire Creation Course to Paris!
I am delighted about the intimacy of this group and the personal connections we have with each other.  I can’t wait for all the conversations we are about to have.  And how perfect- I just came back from a Christian pilgrimage, and now I am off to the Courtesan’s Journey!

In the comments below, I’d love to know, what do you do when you are “under pressure”?

Where in your life are you pressed against your ability to go on, and take that next step—right now?
And who else is a Queen fan?

If you know another woman who’s been feeling under pressure lately, please share this post. And remember, those feelings of exhaustion, defeat, disappointment, or overwhelm that we all face aren’t bad any more than a thunderstorm is bad—once you get your foul-weather gear and rain boots on, and keep putting one foot in front of the other (even when your destination is nowhere in sight), you get to splash in the puddles—even sing in the rain…

With so much love and pleasure,
Mama Gena

P.S. Enrollment is officially open for Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp 2013! If you’re serious about your studies of the Womanly Arts and Tools and want in-depth training in forming brilliant-cut diamonds from any pressure that befalls you, check out all the details here. We’re offering a special Early Bird savings for the first 75 contenders…

P.P.S If you liked this blog, here’s an ample serving of my travel adventures:
Tanzania: “Does your truth hurt?”
Morocco: “A Page from Mama’s Moroccan Travel Diary”
Denmark (video): “Emergency Brags from Mama Gena”
California (video): “Mama’s Video Diary”

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83 Comments / Leave a Comment

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  • Megan Lawrence April 21, 2013, 10:31 am

    Oh man, oh man. The I am definitely up to my ass slogging around in mud these days on an epic pilgrimage. If its not one thing its another. I have begun the long arduous journey of holistically reclaiming my health–and this shit is no joke intense. I have put things in my body, that I never thought were supposed to go in there in places that I didn’t think possible. I’ve seen things come out of my body, that I didn’t think possible. There are days where I’m flipping out at my boyfriend crying, but I’m also laughing at the same time. Most days I’m achy, smelly, worn out and cranky. I am not able to wear makeup or perfume and don’t have the energy to do much of anything in the way of exercise or dancing. On top of that I’m caring for my cat that has cancer, my dad is in and out of the hospital it seems every other month, my grandfather just died, and I’m going to be out of a job (a challenging one at that) that has been paying for my health regimen in about a month. I find myself sometimes asking the Universe, “REALLY?! Can ya give a girl a break to rest for a fuckin’ minute?! Anything else you want to add?!” So to keep me on center, moving forward, and dealing with this giant shit sandwich I’ve been handed on a silver platter, I have been doing a few things:
    Spring Cleaning when I can’t handle things even if I have to do it alone, find things to be grateful for and express gratitude on a regular basis, and I also sing to myself. Lately my song mantra has been “Everything’s Alright” from Jesus Christ Superstar. Yesterday, I was beyond done, so I went shopping. I went into the fitting room, and without knowing why, I started shakin’ my bony, underweight, tired ass to the techno music playing in the store. Got me through the rest of the day.

  • tara April 16, 2013, 4:05 pm

    Exquisite writing and the content went straight to my heart.
    The following passage really grabbed me:
    ‘“Love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves.”
    Which is really what a pilgrimage is for.
    And a pilgrimage is a journey of spiritual significance. It can be a journey to an actual location, like the Camino, or it can be a metaphorical journey, which tests our own beliefs and faith in ourselves. Every time we hit that “I can’t go on” place, we are on a pilgrimage of sorts. And the faith to continue comes from accepting the dare—from love, herself—to change our way of caring about ourselves.’
    I love that you have personified “love.”
    It is true she dares us to change our ways of caring about ourselves.
    I will never forget the day you dared me to do the same and my life has changed because of it.
    Thank you.

    with love and in gratitude-
    Tara

  • Izzie Tree Love April 14, 2013, 12:34 am

    Inspired by this journey and your presence in it and to it. And sharing it with your daughter. I visited St. Iago de Compostella in college and was obsessed with the concept of these pilgrims travelling for days and months. Can’t wait to hear Under Pressure tomorrow.

  • MassageJen April 12, 2013, 11:35 pm

    Hey I am under extreme pressure right now. I just moved out of state with three kids and into my sister ( no kids) and am taking an exam tomorrow. I have done it all as far as dealing but am reaching out to SG’s and wannabe’s (as I am) to have a new support group. I have a lovely support group in the state I left but need desperately some new girlfriends to help me through this transition. I am in Colorado Springs and need some new friends. Thanks all and look forward to meeting you 🙂

    • S.G. little jo April 24, 2013, 9:28 am

      Did you get any replies? I’m getting a bit frustrated not to be able to find any other (true) SG’s around… Now there is some sort of a ‘Goddess Hall’ in Glastonbury where strange women looking more like witches than goddesses gather but… I’m not sure these embrace the same sisterhood I’m eager to find…

  • SG Wild Woman Alex April 12, 2013, 11:43 am

    Oh Mama! What an awesome blog post and oh how I love the LOVE sign on the tractor. GPS has a great sense of humor along with her timing 🙂

    I know that slog well and just bringing everything I have in me into just picking up my foot and placing in front of the other. I’ve even had times where it felt like more of a crawl, but at least I was making progress. Sometimes it feels like I slip or stumble backwards, but when I really look at it, I have not progressed backwards just maybe moved sideways to get a different perspective. I realize I’ve never really lost any ground I’ve gained.

    For me right now, I am slowly crawling out of my cocoon. I move a bit and rest, move a bit and rest. Each movement making me stronger. Soon I will be a butterfly and soar away into the world as the very fullness of my being with all the glittering beauty of who I am available for the world to see. I feel like I’m almost there. Soon. Very soon. Just keep moving.

  • Lois April 11, 2013, 10:53 pm

    Right now I am facing the greatest challenge of my life. My husband recently
    had a massive stroke. There are days when I don’t think I can continue. Needless to say I am not feeling much like a goddess and am finding it difficult to figure out how to find joy at this time of my life.

  • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 3:57 pm

    thanks for those inspiring replies after a not less inspiring post… I love you all my S.G.’s and most of all bless our Mama.

  • folkrockgoddess carla April 11, 2013, 1:31 pm

    tearing up in a cafe as i read this MAMA!!
    absolute BRILLIANCE..which makes sense, because that’s what makes a BRILLIANT DIAMOND…PRESSURE!!
    i have always loved that song soooo much but now it has a whole new inspiring meaning for me!!
    THANK YOU. SEE YOU SOON!!
    PEACE, LOVE N PLEASURE
    XXXO
    YOUR BEYONCE 😉 aka Carla

  • Holly April 11, 2013, 1:18 pm

    Love Queen! What an awesome band and man for just being himself and giving the world some awesomeness to enjoy even now that he has left our world!!!!

    Lately I have felt pressure to lose weight! I have been over weight (obese) for most of my life! I am now nearly 40 with 4 beautiful children and feel the need to lose NOW for their sake as well as my own ( to be there for them and be active with them). I am even considering lap band surgery but feel like I want to do it with out surgery! I beat myself up asking myself… What makes you think you can do it now? Even with the surgery… What if u lose and are one of those people who gains weight cause you can’t change… You’ll never change… It’s too hard to change… I must change.
    I find myself making bad choices cause when and if I have the surgery many things are not allowed… In fact my body won’t tolerate… So I think… Enjoy if now… My problem isn’t appetite but rather sweets. I admit I am an addict for sweets. It is soooo hard for me to give up sweets. I feel like I am brought to my knees. I am tired n frustrated and angry with myself and sometimes want to just give in and never diet again… But I know I will just continue to gain if I do that… Even die!! Right now I am “lucky” cause even with all my weight I am completely healthg(ex… No diabetes, high blood pressure) but I know this wont always be the case if I don’t change and soon!!!! I have been reading a lot for inspiration… For guidance and strength…I wonder if there is a reason I hold all this weight and surgery n the thought if losing all or most of my weight scares me because I have been far for so very long! Anyhow I guess I am not much help as right now I feel like I am in the corner if defeat and though there us a corner where I can move into and take the next step my fear…my laziness maybe… My something keeps me from moving there! Your story did resonate with me so I will retread a few more times and keep hoping for the best!!!! My life depends on it! Thank you for your time!!!

  • Ixeeya April 11, 2013, 12:07 pm

    Thank you for this Mama Gena – It was so very perfect ! and I know just what you mean – reminded me of the treck in Nepal I did with my brother in 2000 – wet with leeches everywhere! Thankyou for that song – those lyrics are amazing !
    I am going to get that song and dance to it today !

    Pressure – yes I am feeling pressure these days for sure ! I love my work – I have sacrificed much to do my work – because I love it and because it really serves- it has not felt like a sacrifice at all – and I feel it is always what I feel spirit is asking me to do.

    So I live simply and flow with what comes – I dont have what most women my age have in these modern times – and I have been happy to live this way. Now with getting a little older (41)- and needing to have larger chunks of money around to take care of the teeth and car and sick parents etc. I am feeling the pressure to up my game – get more flow happening – I am doing buisiness classes and working on my website and really reaching out – I am wondering about this – my forte seems to be loving people in person and through my dance – in person . So trying the lil video thing instead of emails.

    Oh and it does feel like a game – I like it though – I am having fun creating beauty and thinking of connecting with new people – really excited about that –

    – but it is not fun to wake up and feel no response to sharing my heart – to inviting thousands of people to share and receive no – not one response .

    Really I have to laugh- My life has been one of creativity and devotion – I am here on this computer looking to read responses instead of praying and doing my morning yoga -what is that about !?LOL- I feel like a lil girl – on christmas morning- forgetting all about the christmas story and – sneaking out to the tree real early and there being no presents. feeling sad and confused – then lighting the candle and remembering the real meaning of christmas has nothing to do with those presents I was looking for.

    I had such an amazing time doing my ritual and my ceremonial dance and my prayers last night – got my roommates involved they were overjoyed -my love and practices are usually contageous if I am in person with people – Which is what lead me into facilitating- seeing people enliven and fall in love ! Thought to myself yes – this is a good thing – I will do this ! we all got dancing and it was a great time – the prayers for the women felt very deep and I was in so much love and joy.

    The flow of people coming and going is inconsistent and small these days – and I am unsure if that is a message to keep going puch through – or to let this all be a hobby and go get a job . There is pressure in this for sure!

    So to work with the pressure from the conflict with in me around the desire for more flow and response to my work and offerings and the truth of immense love and joy I feel with doing what I do – I would say today I will put my snatam song – ong namo live and remember why I do what I do and choose the joy .

    Choose Faith that everything is as it is and I will be guided – let go of my need to have response and new flow today – because that is not what is – just like you – I am sure you wanted warm dry beds on your journey or a hot show – but that is not what was !

    So what to do but make the choice to love what is and find the things that support us getting back to love – I will sit here and cry for a moment to feel my feelings – then I will go do my dance and yoga – really I never – really never dont feel better after I dance ! So that is always the way back for me – it is just the stubborness to not just go dance that keep me feeling like crap!
    Ahh we are so tender and beautiful – I am going to tap back into the glow of last night and proceed from there – and get to work ! I have pink gerber daisys staring at me right now – what could be bad! they are certainly responding !

    Thank you Mama for this opportunity to be humbled and confessed.
    I really enjoy you . Would love to dance with /for you and your ladies some day to offer my gratitude and share the love of my life with you .

    Big Hug Mama – thank you for who you are
    love
    Ixeeya

  • SG Lena April 10, 2013, 6:30 pm

    I loved reading your post Mama!! I really laughed out loud. Especially the part about thinking hiking and running around the city= similar.
    Great fan of Queen.
    Pressure, yes pressure. My dilemma is that my family and those I love most live on different continents and I’d like to split myself in half many days. My father in Sweden is sick and I miss him so much my heart aches
    What do I do? Reach for your books, my friends, dance, scream, cry, laugh, plan a vacation, work. Invite friends to come over and Dance again. xo

  • SG Marie the Dawn is Breaking April 10, 2013, 2:30 pm

    I fought and fought and fought (and always tired to be joyful) and overcame so many obstacles until one day I came up against a wall that defined one of my greatest nightmares. I had no idea how the fight it. My sense of what was real turned to ashes. Not a bad thing, but one I had no idea how to fight. That’s when I built a cocoon. I lost trust and my joy. I never thought that would happen. I promised myself I wouldn’t let it happen. But it did.

    Since our first weekend of Mastery, I feel like I’m finally coming out into the open again. Since then I’ve actually woken many mornings looking forward to the day and what it’ll bring. I haven’t done that for a long time. My fight is back!! I’ve been sick twice this month and feel like I’m releasing all the sadness and making room for a juicy, joyful life.

    I loved this story. You are a remarkable woman. Thanks for the inspiration!
    Thanks!!!

  • SG C'mere Kitty April 10, 2013, 1:07 pm

    What do you do when you are “under pressure”?

    I close my eyes and rest my brain. I cry. I rebel. I charge. I cower. I grind my teeth. I stress. I breathe. I pray. I call upon a Sister Goddess. I do Spring Cleaning by my self. I hide. I reach out. I journal. I pule. I run my energetics. I take a cool shower…

    Where in your life are you pressed against your ability to go on, and take that next step—right now?

    What to do about my current marriage, what is my next step? He and I are in completely different place sexually, for nearly whole 9 years of marriage. Sure, sex was nicer when we were dating long distance, but our sexual desires hasn’t been compatible. How important is compatible sexuality, the vitality of life? Very… I am suspended and pulled apart by polar oppositions: desire to change, and fear to change. As I type this now, I realize that “to change” is my desire, because at first I wrote “desire to change and desire not to change” but this is inaccurate and not acceptable with my Pussy Goddess. Somewhere i read inve that the negating words are not in its vocabulary. That would make desire to change is my only answer… I would rather, no, correction. Self-LOVE dares me to engage in my full potential, and not be growing my hands hiding under the blanket of naïveté.

    And who else is a Queen fan?

    Yes.

  • SG Island Siren "Jenni" April 10, 2013, 12:12 am

    On the phone with my Mastery study buddy and I asked to SC on “the Pressures in my life” and how affirmed and NOW inspired do I feel after reading this blog post!
    It seems unending… the pressures and yet I don’t want to have a HARD life, because I believe its all in the approach to it. So my brain knows that its vital to shift my perception yet… ah it feels sooo hard mama!
    Mother to Kati 6 and Luka 2, punch list on a house that is going on the market Sunday as I’m in NY for Mastery, cleaners, staging photographers, laundry, meals, mama taxi service AND I’m in B school to clarify and refine my business, I still have clients to tend to so I can MAKE money to pay tuitions… at which I NOT doing a very good job. Worst thing is…I’ve been on my KNEES praying, meditating, screaming, crying, looking for hope and gratitude in the midst yet… F**K sometimes it just hurts. and my body told me so…
    I’m dizzy from it all! I’m silenced by the pressure…numb. Oh mama…SOS
    Where is MY fun! Where is my self care ritual? OUT THE WINDOW… ah and I resist….

    So what am in doing in this pressure. passing out from overwhelm OR pushing on.
    As a mastery student I am checking into the tools yet feel a big disconnect to pleasure and peace in the craze.
    wonderful blog! i will re-read it now… 🙂

  • SG Smita April 9, 2013, 11:25 pm

    So crazy…
    I wanted to walk the Camino a couple of years ago….but instead I did Mastery. That was my pilgrimage, just as difficult and satisfying

  • Melanie April 9, 2013, 6:31 pm

    I love Queen! I’m still not over Freddy Mercury’s untimely death. My go-to song from them is “Don’t Stop Me Now.” That song has got me through so many things.

    Loved this blog post, MG, and hope to some day walk the Camino myself. It sounds amazing. You and Maggie look adorable.

  • Deborah Smith April 9, 2013, 3:04 pm

    PS: I read every other SG’s answer. WOW!!! I am so inspired by my Sisters in so many different ways.
    Thank you All!!!

  • Deborah Smith April 9, 2013, 3:04 pm

    Dear Regena,
    WOW!!! The lyrics brought tears to my eyes. Nick’s comment brought more. I was just thinking last night how I would love to hear you sing. I am so happy I will get that opportunity this weekend.
    I love the pictures you posted. Hope you are all dry now!

    Pressure: sometimes I slog through and then go off and cry out the exhaustion after everything is done. Other times I sit in that corner and have a huge cry then look up and see what I need to do next. Frequently I fall face forward with arms outstretched in embrace onto my first step: “I have no power over persons, places and things.” and that takes SO much pressure off that I can see my way more clearly. Now I do a lot of SCing: thank you very much for that incredible tool!
    You have my love and gratitude. Thank you SO MUCH for answering to my and so many other females crys to manifest you!!!
    xxxxoooo

  • T. L. Cooper April 9, 2013, 2:28 pm

    Seeing as how I’ve been feeling quite overwhelmed or “under pressure” to complete several projects that are behind schedule due to circumstances beyond my control, this post came at an interesting time. When I feel overwhelmed, I tend to simplify. I slightly increase my yoga and gratitude meditation time. I also tend to focus on accomplishing smaller increments of the project. I focus on what I’ve done instead of on what’s left to do (always a challenge for me). I allow myself to do nothing on the projects at hand for an afternoon or a day just to find a balance. I remind myself I chose this life, so I’m in control of how it goes and if a release date or a completion date slides, the world won’t come to an end.
    And, sometimes, though I love interacting with friends and other authors on Facebook, I take a break from social media. I have a tendency to want to offer support and encouragement as much as possible, and social media makes it easy for me to get distracted supporting others while neglecting myself… Just last week, I took a break from social media and made great progress on my projects. It was one of my most productive weeks in months.
    Oh, and Mama Gena, I admire your willingness to commit to and finish that hike… I enjoy short hikes, but that sounds like torture to me… Good for you!!

  • Imperatrix April 9, 2013, 2:17 pm

    WE LOVE YOU
    THE WORLD ADORES YOU
    EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US
    BEYOND YOUR WILLLLLDEST IMAGINATION

  • SG Grace April 9, 2013, 2:13 pm

    Amazing post, Mama Gena, and great timing, too! I’ve recently been under pressure, dealing with a health crisis with my very beloved kitty of 12 years. With all the upheaval of the growth I’ve been going through nonstop during those years, she has been the only unconditionally loving constant through many people, family included, coming and going. We have quite a bond!

    I had a health challenge of my own to navigate at exactly the same time as her life-and-death crisis and facing all that pressure, which included having to figure out a way to still get to work so that I wouldn’t go broke in the midst of it all, I tuned in big time and trusted my intuition. Reached out to a hospice vet I’d heard about who changed everything. Long story short, by acting on my intuition rather than blindly taking the advice of sweet but not-on-my-wavelength vets, kitty and I are both doing so much better. She is a miracle kitty now. I feel empowered. Love was leading the way. Really, if I hadn’t trusted and acted on my intuition, this precious little being would be dead. A powerful lesson that I am aware of every single day.

    Really, it was a matter of shifting from “this kitty is sick; put her to sleep” vs. “this kitty is sick, but HEY! look at her quality of life! It’s still good!” I found myself a vet who focusses on pleasure along with all the scientific smarts. Ha! We’ve been pleasuring it up like mad here and it’s been a life-saver for both of us.

    Your story reminded me of great adventures I’ve had traveling abroad and how I actually love being stretched in that way. I will tune into that part of me, inspired by you anew, as I refocus on taking my little business to the next level! Many thanks!

  • Caitlin April 9, 2013, 2:10 pm

    Mama Gena,
    I am so inspired by you today. The Pilgrimage de Santiago has always intrigued me, I am so glad you were able to experience it (and the account of your heartfelt performance made me feel so proud of you, although we have never met)! After I read through, I clicked on the Chapter 1 link of your book. I think I am finally understanding what you mean by owning/following our pleasure. I hope that one day I can take a course from you. Until then I will practice listening to my intuition and having a little fun! Thank you for your inspiration today.
    Love,
    Caitlin M

  • Kellie Sue April 9, 2013, 2:01 pm

    Thank you for this. I am exactly in this place right now. I have loved that song for years, but hadn’t considered the lyrics until I re-read them just now. (Ironic, since I’m a songwriter…). I know Freddie had massive challenges himself and he still inspires me. Bless his soul on the other side. All of this stuff is going on with me right now – my favorite aunt has stage 4 lung cancer. My family is freaking out. My friends who usually are my rocks and have it together like bricks and mortar are having financial hell and were talking crazy when I called yesterday hoping for support. Instead I ended up listening to the world’s ending … But. It’s going to be ok. I am going to make my own challenges my own personal “pilgrimage” to get to the other side of this. I am going to keep putting one step in front of the other being grateful for all the things in my life and my day that ARE going right. I’m going to cherish each day in honor of my aunt who is doing the same right now. I sent her the most fabulous, sexy wig (my Betty Page) and some hot false eyelashes, and she sent me the most beautiful text this morning thanking me for enabling her to feel like a woman again rather than this “butchered mess – not myself anymore.” She was the one who taught me how to put on makeup and she has been so beautiful all of her life.
    Anyway, I may be crying now, but I have prayers in my heart, a plan for this day, and I’m so very, very grateful for your words — ever since I discovered you — and especially today. Bless you.

  • Jenn April 9, 2013, 1:50 pm

    Thank you Gena! You truly do have universally divine timing! My 15 year old daughter and I are both huge Queen fans. I had the heartbreaking experience of admitting her into inpatient psychiatric treatment last night. When I left her, she was sitting on the cold floor in the corner of her spartan room, alone, crying her eyes out, tears of fear and frustration and utter lostness. The reason for her admission, her need for it, has everything to do with pressure, immense pressure put on her by her own self-concept, herculean standards, and by all the “adult” requirements she sees as the death of her childhood. Fifteen, that time of one foot in each of two worlds. With her tears flowed the words, “you’re not my mother!”

    The thing is, in those tearful moments, I could not have been more her mother, and she could not have been more her mother’s daughter. She and I suffer from the same affliction, impossibly high standards, an overdeveloped sense of responsibility, imbalance in the ratio of work to play, and a recent dearth of bliss. I am my mother’s daughter in the same ways she is mine. I realized then that I cannot pass on to her the burden that my mother passed to me, the joyless, erroneous lesson, by example, that women must “handle,” take on, everything, and be perfect in order to be loved. If I have one important responsibility, it is to stem the tide of that lesson, ensure that the lessons of my generations stop at me, and then to make sure they do not define me, bog me down, either. To cast them aside, and replace them with something better, to shed those lessons like old clothes and toss them away. I must choose joy, and let her see the power in it. But in order to pass on the joy of womanhood, the raw resplendent possibility (which is sooo much better than childhood, btw), I must truly embrace it myself, then radiate it out so she, so everyone, can see and feel it.

    I am taking the steps, ending a marriage that has solidified the wrong lessons, nurtured the woman bogged down in weight and obligation to remain so. I am choosing happiness, striving for wholeness, and embarking on my own amazing path of possibility. I’m doing this for me, and also for my daughter, so she can see up close how much living there is to do, and how much joy there is in living it.

    Thank you, Gena, for adding your fuel to this fledgling fire, for encouraging me to think, and yes, prompting me to sing. When I give my girl a hug tonight, perhaps I will whisper these words in her ear: “Can’t we give ourselves one more chance? Why can’t we give love that one more chance?” She might push me away, or hold me tight, cry, or scream or sing. No matter what, the words will remain, the earworm of her evening, her journey, the question she may not be able to ask herself now, or yet, but soon, and again and again.

    Gratitude and love,
    J

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 4:25 pm

      keep following your joy, j- it is the best gift you can give to your daughter.
      standing for you and your girl.
      xo,
      mg

  • Kathleen April 9, 2013, 1:35 pm

    Mama Gena,
    Thank you for sharing that story. I am so excited you and your daughter walked the El Camino. The El Camino seems to provide whatever it is one needs, even rain and the perfect song and friends to get you to sing it aloud so that one finds her way through to more love.
    And thank you for reminding me that I am exactly where I am supposed to be.
    With big love and big curves,
    Kathleen

  • Anna April 9, 2013, 1:33 pm

    Talking about crossroads! About 2 months ago I sat down in my kitchen as the full realisation the family I have been wanting is not going to happen. I have been married for 12 years and gave this marriage my best. I have wanted it to be a happy family, a family that does things together and helps everyone grow. The more I tried, the worse it got. So I finally let go of that dream/struggle. 3 weeks after I met a man. He is everything I would want except, he’s married. Still, I would love to be able to just meet with him for coffee and talk, or go for walks in the country. My husband won’t hear of that. He says IF I want to do that, we have to separate. We have 2 young kids. So, what do I do. Right now I’m scared to separate and I’m scared to let the other part of my life go, because only in contact with this man do I feel truly alive. I have heart palpitations and I can hardly breathe. I can’t focus on my daily routine and I struggle to take care of the kids.I don’t work at the moment and it will be a while before I do so there’s a financial scare as well. I pray to everything I can think of but it’s only a temporary relief. It’s just becoming unbearable. How do i find that strength within myself? Do I stay in my unhappy relationship because of the children? I wish dance breaks would help, but they don’t.

  • Cornelia April 9, 2013, 1:29 pm

    Regena,

    What an epic blog, post and experience!!! I absolutely loved it. The perfect journey, from happy easy, to not so easy, to holy hell and no way to continue, which brought out the kick-ass goddess woman spirit, heading right straight back out to the ultimate goal of victorious sainted hug and intense connections to your family, friends and LOVE.

    Interestingly, I realize what gets me out of those hideous doldrums, when I don’t want to leave the comfort of my comforter and the interest of my dreams, is exactly the sort of adventure you just had. Those adventures are what jazz me and make me feel most alive and excited for more.

    My trouble comes when I feel surrounded by nothingness, flat seas and calm days when nothing seems to change, no job, no money, out-of-shape, no love-life, no social-life. Those are hardest times for me, and exactly when I don’t want to try anything because I’m so bored, I must be boring and therefore worthless and what the heck am I even doing here. Yada yada yada.

    All to say, you totally inspire me to just bloody get out there and make my own adventures, enjoy this fabulous ride. Sign up for a crazy new work-out, get out there and talk to people even when they’re decidedly conservative and curmudgeonly, maybe even be so daring as to ask a guy on a date even when and most especially when I’m feeling very old and unattractive. Because, as you reminded me, often the nuttiest, craziest, wildest adventures turn out to be the best.

    Thanks so much!
    xoxo, Cornelia

  • Barbara April 9, 2013, 1:28 pm

    Fantastic post, MamaG. My favorite sentence is this one: “….there is always one day—one moment of one day—on which all the preceding days rest, and on which all the following days depend.” So eloquently stated. You are making me chompy to go overseas and have my own pilgrimage.

  • Hil April 9, 2013, 1:08 pm

    Mama! I have been to Santiago, and love picturing you (underneath your hiking gear) in thigh-high mesh stockings, or placing a tiara on your daughter’s head as she came up the steps. You are a goddess too!

    A few days ago, ex trumped up a charge and got me arrested for 7 hours. It could have been traumatic, but I used the time to focus on boosting my 19-year old druggie’s inmate’s self-esteem. I told her she has sh**ty boyfriends because she aims low, and she is fabulous because she’s a woman and she needs to aim higher. I told her she is smart and sassy and can do more with her life. No idea if that will resonate or not, but she said I was very wise and wanted to hear more. I TOTALLY channeled you, Mama, and decided I was her angel for the night. Maybe she will have one tiny step towards higher self-esteem, who knows. And man, it is ENLIGHTENING to see a jail from the inside. My ex then used the threat of a resulting restraining order to get me to negotiate for him to get more custody. I gave him more, but in truth I am ELATED because I will have kept my daughter from being with him 50/50 for 2 whole years since the separation. So he feels he won, and I feel I won. I WANT TO FRIGGIN’ PARTY!

    It’s all about perspective, isn’t it?

  • Kate Goldsborough April 9, 2013, 12:52 pm

    Regena,
    Wow. What writing. As usual your timing is amazing. I am down and out with despair, and with so much to do… If I didn’t have the community and spring cleaning, and now this… I would be lost today. Really I didn’t believe I could go on.
    Powerful stuff, Babycakes. Thank you so much.
    You and Maggie look great in the pictures!
    xoKate

  • Wildkat April 9, 2013, 12:38 pm

    Thank you thank you thank you for sharing this! That pilgrimage is one of my deep desires! So happy and proud of you and Maggie. Increíble!

  • SG Ti Sugarbitch April 9, 2013, 12:33 pm

    “It’s the terror of knowing what this world is about”…when I’d rather live in my dreamy fantasies. “Watching some good friends scream, ‘Let me out'”…when the screams are silent and in their eyes only. This blog touched me so much. I’m pressed right now to step into the role of teacher/leader in MY way, the way that cares about what people desire and doesn’t much care what they need in the classic ‘let me take care of you’ way. Every day I get the message that, as a woman, in order to be a good woman, I need to care about feeding people, making them feel good, taking care of my man, all the material nurturing tasks that bore me until they irritate. What I desire is to stand for my desires and other’s desires, to free people to admit they have desires, that there are things and feelings they want to have. Stepping away from the ‘take care of others’ to the ‘stand for others’ role feels like a huge step and I am definitely in the corner. If I’m honest, I need to cut some social obligations and pay fierce attention to nurturing and growing me right now. Thank you so much for the reminder that there is a St. James to hug at the end, even if mine is a living Norwegian brother-god rock climber!

    • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 11:37 am

      Stepping away from the ‘take care of others’ to the ‘stand for others’ role: excellent idea. Desires are too often neglected by mums asking 20 years after like mine: ‘but why didn’t you make it, I gave you everything (care, studies) to succeed…’

      Nevertheless, both have to be done, for a family needs care to be happy…

  • Jen Sparkles April 9, 2013, 12:18 pm

    This is soo what i NEEDED TODAY! And today is proving to be a perfect, wonderful day. I was so overwhelmed last night…..life obligations, husband’s tude, toddlers melt downs, work stress, emotional stress, wanting change and feeling stuck! And, last night I prayed that I get some relief. And, then this comes in! And it makes so much sense! Thanks!

  • SG Pu-rekini Alison April 9, 2013, 11:44 am

    Thank you, Mama!
    FF: “Love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves.” You come up with these gems, oh, so often. Always inspiring. And the license plate on the tractor — priceless! I love the universe’s sense of humor. I also love hearing about these amazing trips you take with your daughter. She is blessed, as are you. Keep soakin’ those precious feet of yours. How about lavendar epsom salts?
    xoxo

    PS Maybe I’ll finally start listening to pop music in earnest.

  • Melinda Cohan April 9, 2013, 11:31 am

    Yo Mama! Have you been reading my mind again?!?! Or listening in to my business meetings with my team?!? My team and i are at this EXACT crossroads you wrote about. This morning (before reading your blog) i fiercely Spring Cleaned on this exact topic — Partying right where i’m at when it’s the last thing i want to do. And by the end of the SC’ing i had turned my intimidation, fear and overwhelm into driftwood, womantra and a party! Then to open your blog – tears came to my eyes with the confirmation i most needed. You are for me like that license plate was to you on your journey. What was the quote i had said to the SWA enrollment team?! “No Pressure No Diamonds” — here we go. Thank you for this exquisitely timed message. You are always the GPS in the flesh sitting on my shoulder delivering the message i most need to hear and for that i’m eternally grateful for you and the work you do!

    My favorite frame: “a… journey, which tests our own beliefs and faith in ourselves. Every time we hit that “I can’t go on” place, we are on a pilgrimage of sorts. And the faith to continue comes from accepting the dare—from love, herself—to change our way of caring about ourselves.”

    THANK YOU MAMA!!!!

    • SG Sparkling Fiesta April 9, 2013, 2:47 pm

      Brillantly framed, goddess – “No Pressure No Diamonds”. totally want the t-shirt!

  • SG Ssanyu April 9, 2013, 11:22 am

    Boy does this post hit home! Thirteen days ago I gave birth to my second son, Phoenix. I swamped good and plenty through this pregnancy. This pregnancy was happening during my Saturn return so it was fraught with work issues, family issues, and then we both found ourselves unemployed as we approached and then passed our due date. But something divine has been taking root inside my perfect storm. I found strength I never knew I had to go through the natural process of labor almost entirely at home while everyone slept. I’ve realized that next to me is the partner and Divine Big Love that I have desired for myself for most of my life who wanted to experience everything with me, who wanted to love me through my breakdowns and overwhelming fears, and who had prayed for me much as I had prayed for him. January of last year found me devastated over the sudden loss of a relationship with a man I loved with my eyes closed. Now I am living with and being cared for by the man I’m going to marry and gazing upon our beautiful new son and I know that the end of this pilgrimage is just marking a new beginning for us all.

  • carrie hirsch April 9, 2013, 10:51 am

    Thank you Mama! That was just the dare to love I needed. Now let’s see if I have the courage to keep walking.

    Love, Carrie

  • SG Alyssa April 9, 2013, 10:50 am

    What a beautiful post! I love it! So inspiring and courageous. And I’m very much looking forward to your entrance to “Under Pressure” this weekend at Mastery! When I have those big bag of suck days when it all feels like too much, I try to go outside and smell the fresh air and take in deep breaths and ground myself. And I remember that just a few short years ago, I was in misery with my job. Working 60-80 hours/week as a lawyer – getting yelled at by everyone and treated like crap. It was so awful that I would come home and cry on a regular basis. And so I left it and moved into a job in which I’m treated with respect and kindness and feel valued and important to the organization. It’s not my dream job, but it’s infinitely better than what I left. And so I know that my next steps and next profession will take me even higher and align me even more closely with my purpose and Highest Path. And so as I struggle with my fears of coming out of the spiritual closet in a much bigger way, and showcasing my gifts and my beliefs to my family (many of whom won’t approve and will react with cruelty when they hear what I’m doing) and to the world, I can read your blog and other women’s reactions and know that we’re all in this together. And that it’s OK to be scared and sad and to have to fight to take that next step. But I can take it and it will be amazing in the long run! So thank you, Regena!

    • Felice April 10, 2013, 6:30 pm

      Alyssa, I very much relate to what you wrote and would love to connect, similar journey. I am in Mastery right now too. You can reach me at 917-697-3707. Felice

  • Teresa April 9, 2013, 10:44 am

    Wonderful post! Music, hiking, pushing yourself higher and on…
    I caught myself reflecting when I went to Calabasas for a “ashram” session – walking..i mean hiking up goat hill with a walkie talkie – because its a small group of participants and everyone goes at their own pace. Anyway – I thought – what am I doing? this hiking hurts but I looked all around and no one was gonna carry me down. So you push harder and on….looking back I can feel great knowing I pushed through it all and came out ok. Thanks for the post!

  • Leslie Ringler April 9, 2013, 10:34 am

    Thank you for being my LOVE sign on the back of a tractor today! Beautifully written, inspiring and humbling. Thank you!

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 4:10 pm

      honored to be your love sign 😉

  • SG Susie April 9, 2013, 10:01 am

    “We resist our darkness or feel overcome by it, when really, it holds our most potent power.”

    Oh Regena. Thank you for this at this moment. Put this way. I’m at the moment where I get to choose in this way, to decide to bring that which fear and shame tried to hide from me into my full self. Thank you. Love this blog. Love what is happening to you with all your recent traveling–you see why it was such a tool for many of us before we even knew what to call it!
    Much love,
    SG Susie

  • nanchan April 9, 2013, 9:48 am

    Oh, Mama! This blog brought me to tears. I’ve read it about 5 times this morning. Thank you so much for sharing this journey with your fans. I’ve loved your books through the years and have turned so many of my friends into fellow sister goddesses… and I love your tv appearances so much! Please do more when you can and thank you for your transparency and your desire to bring more women into the realm of womanly arts!

  • robin Kahn April 9, 2013, 9:38 am

    Wow, beautiful beautiful post! I was with you every (painful) step of the way!!! Thank you for sharing this with us. I am so inspired by your courage and Maggie’s!! Wow, she is incredible, to be able to accomplish that! I am going to listen to that song right now and take a dance break.

    When I’m pushed – I do a lot of mediating and lean into my faith. I let myself feel all my feelings and then keep taking one step at a time. (Even if it’s a small step.)

    I want to do that hike (preferably not in the rainiest season) – but I want to do it! With my daughter! Thank you for such gorgeous story telling and for your courage.

  • Suzi Banks Baum April 9, 2013, 9:23 am

    Holey Moley Mama. That was a memorable hug for St. James too, I am sure! I love this post. And your travels bring out a level of your truth in a way that home, even if it is NYC, just does not do. I love the list of places you have been. I am all the sudden hearing Dr. Suess’ “Oh The Places You’ll Go”
    “Things may happen and often do to people as brainy and footsy as you”
    ― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
    Where do I feel under pressure? Right now, it is to take a stand for my work in the world and really sing out about it. I have been playing small and effectively- just self-published an anthology of 36 women’s writing and art about mothering and now is the time to spread the word. And I am so resistant to certain parts of this effort.
    So, I swamped this weekend, shared it, moved on to a Holy Trinity, did some mad self love, had a lot of fun with my family, offered some gratitude, helped someone else in need, gave my Sisters some upriding and today? Things are much better. Still pressure, but, my little stick legs are getting me there.
    Thank you for your courage to live it out loud for Maggie. You are making a difference in so many lives just by living your single amazing life. I love you singing to Nick and Kenny while that tractor man was slowly making his way towards you. That is a movie right there.
    Love, pulling up in front of you.
    You have freakin’ perfect and elegant timing. No matter how wet you are.
    Yours, Ever,
    S

    • SG C'mere Kitty April 10, 2013, 12:18 pm

      Best line, “You are making a difference in so many lives just by living your single amazing life.” So true, and such an aspiration.

      • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 10:58 am

        agreed

  • SGBarbarelle April 9, 2013, 9:09 am

    “You know you have to get yourself up and take it, but that next step seems so impossible, or you are just so tired, disappointed, overwhelmed, exhausted, defeated, and you just do not, I tell you, do not have it in you to even move.”

    What an inspirational message, Regina. Congratulations on your tremendous feat.
    You have given me the courage to finally begin work on a huge synagogue commission.
    I have been procrastinating about it for weeks. Today is the day!
    With love and gratitude,
    SGBarbarelle

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 4:08 pm

      go barbarelle!!

  • Amy April 9, 2013, 8:46 am

    My current (& constant) pressure is motivation to live. Live abundantly, joyfully, skillfully, adventurously. Not just painful (at times) & apathetic endurance/fatalism. I’ve been discussing this with Jesus and actually opened this email. The lyric that jolted me was ‘love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves.’ I stopped reading and journaled to discover why I responded the way I did and received great insight. That the rest of the post turned into an exposition on this line was confirmation of the conclusion we came to. Thank you Mama Gena for sharing this.

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 4:06 pm

      thanks for reading, it was my favorite line, as well

  • BSG Glitzy Cougar Karen April 9, 2013, 8:31 am

    I’m at the edge right now. The edge of money. The edge of this huge vision I have about empowering women through the media. I have written a tv pilot script and gotten it to major networks. I have written/performed/produced my solo show comedy. I have submitted that to yet another festival. I have submitted the book proposal of my memoir to a major publishing house…and NOTHING has unfolded yet. The reviews on all of it have been great. I have spent oodles of my divorce money to do all this and the money has gone out. And I’m bone tired, spiritually tired, of this vision. I want to curl up in a ball or run into the woods naked, screaming, “NO MORE!”

    And I have never made a real living in my adult life. Yes, I worked my way through college and helped my parents at the same time, but I stayed in a desolate 25 year marriage for financial security. When I left, I got a good settlement, had an amazing spiritual journey and landed here in NYC and at Unity and MG’s. And my life is wonderful. But the money thing is in my face, as is Davin’s story of the Handless Maiden. Growing hands around making my own living, and living my vision, has been my Camino.

    And every part of my bone marrow is in resistance. My timing is perfect and elegant has become my mantra.

    Thanks Regena. Watching your slog and then soar is always a great inspiration:)

    • SG C'mere Kitty April 10, 2013, 12:11 pm

      Thank you for sharing, I read your comment twice, I feel you! And I think you are brave and courageous. I cheer for you!

    • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 10:51 am

      My mom use to tell me since I’m a child that ‘you don’t die from money wounds’… and I’d add especially in our western world where we’re ultra-spoiled. You’re feeling happy and fulfilled being that fierce Glitzy Cougar I love to read the brags, that is what counts. For what concerns the money, keep on trying and it’ll come eventually 🙂

    • Megan Lawrence April 21, 2013, 10:10 am

      Glitz,

      Hang in there! I believe in you! look how much light you’ve brought to the world just by moving to the beat of your heart. By doing that, you’ve set into motion the inspiration for Lauren and all the rest of us.
      Love you lots and hope to see you soon.

      xo SG Megan

  • sparking fiesta April 9, 2013, 8:27 am

    Buen camino, Mama Gena! I brag I completed that stretch of the Camino this past summer and know exactly the sense of utter fatigue and sense of accomplishment that you write about. Thank you for reminding me of that experience bc I often draw on its lessons & mysteries to get to the next step. I desire wanting to do the whole Camino one day. Camino is such a metaphor for life.

  • Nick April 9, 2013, 8:16 am

    Gena – you are one bass ass hiker, and to share in that path with you is a gift.
    Corrections to her well told tale:
    What she failed to share folks – is that the day before this singing, she was in shock. Shock from the battering the “mother” gave us. I have been an outdoorsman all my life and this was a mother fu&*%^ of a storm – it was a joy and scary. Impressive that she laced up and got back out.
    She says “Tear up” when she sang that song – bullshit, I was crying. That LOVE plate – it was burn at the stake kind of magic.
    Yours on the path,
    Nick

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 3:48 pm

      burn at the stake kind of magic?
      LOVE that.
      where we goin’ next? 🙂

      • Nick April 9, 2013, 8:18 pm

        an act of the fear based man- burning powerful women. Its the glass ceiling now it was a stake then.

  • Lillian April 9, 2013, 8:13 am

    When I’m feeling so overwhelmed…so worried…so scared…in that place of regret about the past and paralyzing fear about the future…(somehow I think we all find ourselves in that place now and then) I can ease the pressure and begin to find peace in repeating to myself…”I’m OK…I’m safe”…as I take deep conscious breaths…I affirm this over and over again…and begin to notice that, yes…in this moment, (not next month, or tomorrow, or even an hour from now)…but right now, between breathing in and breathing out…I am OK…There’s enough air to breathe…there’s no hungry lion chasing me. I focus on this moment…this breath…and the next. Eventually this calms my mind enough that some light begins to illuminate the darkness and ease the despair.

  • Erin Ross April 9, 2013, 8:10 am

    Perfect timing!

    So, I am 6 months pregnant and 2 weeks away from launching my teen mentorship program. My sweet hisband shares that his sister has scheduled his Dad’s 75th surprise birthday party on the first day of the mentorahip program. My team that works for me is having some issues getting along right now creating a bit of chaos in the office. We leave in 4 days for a week in Florida. My computer with all filesfor te program died yesterday morning and wont get replaced until next week. We were desiring 25 girls in the program and we have 6 young girls registered.

    Dilemma – does the show go on or not? Talk about pressure…we have involved a dozen extraordinary women from our community to share with these girls.

    Deciding Moment: I made the decision that despite all the obstacles, this is my heart’s desire and life’s purpose. The show is going on and it will be fabulous.

    Dance Breaks, Spring Cleaning, and a lot of Self-Care were the tools I used to move through this thanks to you and the SWA!

    Sending you much love!!!

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 3:47 pm

      well bragged, erin!! you are navigating these bumps in the road like a true pleasure revolutionary

      • SG C'mere Kitty April 10, 2013, 12:13 pm

        My favorite line, too! I never realized that was in the lyrics, until now.

  • manuela April 9, 2013, 7:58 am

    Dear Mama Gena,
    thank you for sharing. Your experience speaks to what is in me, that is resilient and strong, a core that is the essence of Me. Not the expression of Love, as sweet and soft and gentle, but as a toughness of knowing we have a source of Infinite strength.
    It is so good to be reminded that this is in me, always.
    Thank you
    SG manuela

  • Sheri April 9, 2013, 7:51 am

    “Hiking is to walking like a river is to a puddle” – my favourite statement of the day. Love this post, Regena!

  • Kat April 9, 2013, 7:51 am

    LOVE this.

    LOVE on the back of a tractor… A hug with a saint.

    Love, love, love.

    Rest those feet for PARIS. You’ll need them!

  • Lola April 9, 2013, 7:31 am

    Pressured to Keep the faith in my wonderfulness. Loving myself when my loved ones are unkind. Detaching with love from the negativity as I maintain love in myself. Knowing that happiness is an inside job. Not looking at the exterior but going inward while living in this world. Looking at myself in wonderment. Having courage. These are my pressures.

    • Juli April 9, 2013, 10:33 am

      Lola,

      I am dealing with exactly the same experiences right now, and I spent last night grieving because I caved “under pressure”. But I woke up this morning OK with it all, because there’s so much better coming for all of us!

      • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 10:30 am

        I join you both but with much more faith… we’re gonna get our better future because we believe in it. But in the meantime we must not forget to enjoy this moment for its perfection right now…

    • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 10:36 am

      Lola I’m sure happiness is an inside job too, since I’m much happier now even if my circumstances didn’t change at all (bless MamaGena!), but that doesn’t mean you’ve gotta hide away in yourself for your loved ones won’t become more loving if you stop looking at them: you’ve gotta smile to the world you want the world to smile back to you…

  • Denise April 9, 2013, 7:28 am

    Thank you, you are an excellent writer.

    My most difficult pressure at present is the recent realization that I have more than one and wanting to avoid them all! What do I do? Procratination becomes my constant companion and guilt is her opportunistic partner!!

    • S.G. little jo April 11, 2013, 10:17 am

      I know this one Denise, and I’m not sure you have to feel guilty: Freud said the pleasure principle may be responsible for procrastination, so you’re just obeying Mama’s orders on indulging yourself…

      Two years ago I was on burn-out (I’m nurse), eaten alive by the stress and the chaos AROUND me and since I’m avoiding to be under pressure I recovered my balance. So if you feel that pressurised at the moment, it’s time to take a real break (get away from it all) and re-organise your priorities to get rid of the unnecessary pressions first and then, get the work done. Good luck!

  • Azul April 9, 2013, 7:17 am

    Regena, what an amazing post – this is so beautiful!!!!!

    I AM CRYING!!!!!!!!

    And yes, I am a big Queen fan – and have always loved this song.

    What do I do when I am Under Pressure?

    Lately I have been PRAYING and calling in all manner of spiritual assistance – angels, grandmothers, grandfathers, sisters, goddesses, spirit and animal guides. And specifically Archangel Michael who has been just so sweet lately.

    I’ve also frequently affirm what you’ve taught us which is to DECIDE THAT WHERE I AM IS EXACTLY THE RIGHT PLACE TO BE!!!

    Love,
    SG Azul

    • Colleen Hannegan April 9, 2013, 12:32 pm

      Azul, me too!!!! Under pressure is sometimes literally down on my knees in front of my ancestral altar or calling out to my Power Animlas, my angels, Jesus!, spirit guides, anybody listening…..and understanding surrender, to this moment and the gift it brings. It always releases me from my own pressure of forcing things and not just receiving and relaxing! Thanks for sharing….

      • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 3:37 pm

        so glad you enjoyed the post, thanks sisters!

  • Jen B April 9, 2013, 6:33 am

    Huge Queen fan, right here!!! They were my reason for living in high school, when my friends were listening to Nirvana.

    Anyway, my biggest pressure right now is all wrapped up in launching my business. It feels so right to offer myself, my experiences and my life view to other women who are in the same boat I once was (and sometimes still am) – sad, frustrated, using food to self-soothe, sick and tired. I know in my soul that this is what I need to be doing. So I’m working…and working…and working… 😉 And I know it’ll be worthwhile to those who I reach.

    It’s those moments of “I can’t do this” that need to be powered through. I’ve spent most of my life giving in to those moments. Pushing through them is something new.

    • Mama Gena April 9, 2013, 3:33 pm

      i believe in you, jen!! and i look forward to reading your launch brags…

    • Cathy April 15, 2013, 10:29 am

      I’m right there with you, Jen!

      What a perfect piece for me to have read this Monday morning, as I try to buckle down and face the scary demons that are holding me back in my own holistic nutrition practice.

      And I just listened to Under Pressure for the 5932nd time in 32 years of it being one of my all-time favourites, and this is the first time I did it with the lyrics in front of me: What a powerful message! Freddie and David rock!