It is part of my calling as a nature-loving healer and writer to work towards a sustainable and joy-filled world. This is a world where our relationship with our bodies, our selves, the earth and each other is respectful, loving and honouring. I believe that in order to do this, we need to honour the cycles of life. Birth, death, summer, winter, inward and outward, sowing and harvesting. A time for everything. For centuries, our industrialised world has neglected these cycles, with an emphasis on continuous, round-the-clock productivity and pulling the maximum rewards from our planet without putting anything back or giving the earth time to lie fallow and rest. We all know the disastrous effects of that, on our physical and mental health, on the earth and on the creatures we share it with.
I believe that menstrual cycle awareness, or menstruality, is a key piece in this puzzle. For far too many women, pain, discomfort and mental and emotional suffering is a monthly occurrence. It doesn't have to be this way. A few years ago, I discovered Alexandra Pope's work on the menstrual cycle as a tool for holistic wellbeing on all levels. Applying what I learned there, and in her later book, 'Wild Power', co-authored with Sjanie Hugo Wurlitzer, I radically changed my relationship to my cycle. I came to understand what this 'PMT' thing was: the result of ignoring my changing feelings and needs as I progressed through my cycle.
As I delved deeper, I realised that most, if not all, of the discomfort of the menstrual experience comes from simply not living in tune with our cycles, not understanding them, and not having the tools to work with them. And our culture undoubtedly does not support this. Yet, this is changing, slowly. Alexandra has already pioneered a Period Leave policy which one company in Bristol is using to support women to be at their best health, and several women are now offering Menstruality Mentorship through Alexandra & Sjanie's 'Red School' to those who are struggling with their cycles in some way.
I am absolutely fascinated by this topic, and my passion for working with women (11 years of running groups and providing one-to-one support, using my Counselling qualifications) has now found a new direction. The many discussions I have had with other women about this have shown me that this developing field of menstruality, which Alexandra pioneered, is a rich source of wisdom. When empowered with this knowledge, women become healthier, happier and more able to give their best to the world and to live in alignment with their purpose. This, of course, has a ripple effect on their partners, children, friends and workplaces.
The teachings on Menstruality provide a model of what it is to live sustainably, by working with the four seasons inherent in the cycle: Summer (ovulation time), Autumn (premenstrual time), Winter (menstruation), and Spring (building towards Ovulation). There are times to be busy, times to go 'in', times to be social, times to rest, times to put new projects out and times to tenderly cherish new seedlings of ideas. Productivity, meaning, satisfaction and good health are all greatly enhanced when we work with this cycle rather than working against it. I've written an introductory blog post about this, and the link between menstrual awareness and a sustainable world, here.
I am currently booked onto Alexandra and Sjanie's course, The Woman’s Quest Apprenticeship, which is the first comprehensive training of its kind in the world exploring and developing the exciting new discipline of menstruality. This is a discipline that is set to change the way we approach women’s wellbeing at all levels of our personal and professional development, creative and spiritual life. The Women's Quest is a radically new approach to leadership training for women based on a uniquely female model of development: the menstrual cycle and the psychological and spiritual developmental journey from menarche (first bleed) through menopause into her mature years. Two of my friends have previously done the course and benefited enormously, both personally and professionally.
The site of the course, in Stroud, Gloucestershire
The course is run over 5 months and includes 2 five and a half day residentials, 2 private coaching sessions, an online group, and a comprehensive manual. It involves working deeply with a group of 22 women. On this course, I will deeply explore a body of knowledge with ancient roots that has been freshly articulated and evolved for twenty–first century women. I will learn about the cycle within the context of wellness, creativity and spirituality. I will also help to expand this knowledge, becoming a co-creator and co-evolver of our understanding of what it means to be a woman in the world today. The course's purpose is to help each woman to find their own authority, or ‘voice’, in the field of menstruality.
Having done two of their excellent online courses, I am so excited about this 'live' course. I would love to take this work to other women and to young girls who are just entering this world and are often completely unaware of the power of their cycle. It is my dream to become a Menstruality Mentor and to pass on this crucial knowledge, in my own unique way.
(You can read more about Alexandra and Sjanie's pioneering work here.)
Me running a supportive group for mothers at an event by Mothers Uncovered, who I worked with for several years.
This is where you come in ... I feel such a strong calling to do this course. I am so passionate about this work and what a difference it makes to people. I know that it is possible for this to happen.
I have paid the deposit of £380 in an act of faith and I now need to raise the rest of the funds for the training. Despite juggling a couple of jobs and living extremely frugally, this is currently beyond my means. I am still rebuilding my life after a radical, unexpected life change a year ago which resulted in most of my financial resources being removed. The total cost of the course is £2204.00, which includes full residential (accommodation and food) costs for 10 days and the course fees themselves.
Living in a community where there is a Woman (an individual or a group of women) who is responsible for preparing girls for puberty and celebrating their first period; teaching them cycle awareness for self–care, menstrual health, contraception, and the sacredness of sexuality; preparing women for pregnancy and birth, and finally greeting them as they arrive at the door of menopause.
My own initiation into motherhood, 11 long years ago.
A world where the menstrual cycle is no longer cloaked in shame and pain but is celebrated, respected and utilised as a tool for growth in every woman's life.
As a woman, going for healing, counselling or coaching where at the centre of your work is the acknowledgement of your cycle as a core tool for healing and creating your future
Attending a personal or spiritual development program where the menstrual cycle is openly acknowledged and recognised as the quintessential Woman’s Way
Working in an environment where your embodied intelligence as a woman is welcomed, and in which business development recognises cyclical consciousness
Men respecting the menstrual cycle as a wonderful ally for deepening relationship and experiencing an exquisite holy union
A culture that celebrates cyclical life in all its guises…
Menstruality consciousness restored to the world.
It is my vision to be a woman who is instrumental in restoring this knowledge and consciousness to our families, communities and culture.
Whatever amount you can help with would be so greatly appreciated! And you won't just get the rewarding feeling of supporting a good cause - I'm offering gifts to people who donate £5 or more!
*£5 - A digital download of my Poetry and Photography E-Book, 'On the Edge of Wilderness'*
*£10 - A digital download of my ground-breaking book 'Wild Motherhood: Tending the Fire of your Creative Spirit'.*
What others have said about the book: “Brutally honest and beautifully written” – “A deep journey into the shadow and unspoken lives of mothers. I celebrate your determined effort to speak the unspoken” – "'Wild Motherhood' is the missing voice, and I urge all mothers to read it. You will find within it's pages the experiences of lots of women who have found a way to navigate motherhood without losing themselves. The stories and insights the women share are encouraging and enlightening, but most of all they leave you feeling like you've just spent time soaking up the wisdom from an ancient sisterhood, something that all women, especially mothers, need much more of in their daily lives."
*£20 - Book a mini (3-card) tarot reading with me (see below for tarot details)* Ideal for a snapshot of what is going on with you at the moment or to give an insight into a situation, problem or decision.
*£30 - Book a full tarot reading with me (or give it as a gift to a friend).*
I will deliver your results on a specific question or a general reading by email. This includes looking at different options when making a decision and can be very clarifying. I've been reading tarot for a number of years for myself and others and find it a highly illuminating tool. "Morgan has a real gift for seeing the underlying patterns and interpreting the symbols for you." - Sara-Mae.
*£40 - A digital download of my 6-week E-Course, 'Light the Fire of your Creative Spirit'*. This E-Course is the culmination of several years of working with mothers and my own personal experience as a mother and creative. It is especially for mothers longing to reclaim their connection to themselves and their self-expression. It includes videos, audio meditations and plenty of rich material and inspiration, as well as powerful worksheets and reflective exercises. You can read more about this resource here. It's also a great gift for the mums in your life! "Inspiring, gentle, thought provoking, moving. I felt interesting and interested". - Gemma, previous Mothers Writing workshop participant.
*£50 - An astrology report on your Karmic Path and patterns (You'll need your birth place and time).* Explore what you came to be, do, and share here and gain key insight into the blueprint for your life, using the ancient art & science of astrology. See below for details & testimonial.
*£100 - A full astrological birth chart reading (You'll need your birth place and time).*
This includes a written report and a 1 hour consultation on Skype or Facebook Messenger. I've been studying astrology since the age of 13, including 2 years formal study with eminent astrologer Rod Suskin. "Morgan's reading of my birth chart provided very interesting and useful clarity and insight into the patterns and attributes relevant to my life and how they function within it. I felt empowered ... A deeper understanding of why I view the world and interact with it is as I do gave me a sense that the patterns set up in my life can be worked with and changed. Morgan’s explanation and analysis of my chart was clearly presented with an emphasis and focus on areas and aspects that were strongest and most pertinent to the influences working within my life. Throughout, her use of examples to clearly illustrate concepts as well as practical advice on how to work with my particular challenges made her reading a most beneficial tool for self-development and understanding." - Lauren.
*£125 - A full copywriting and editing service for your web page, blog post or document up to 1600 words long (My hourly rate is £25/ hour)*. You can read about my word-sculpting credentials as a copywriter and editor here. For now, here is one testimonial: "This is really, really great stuff, Morgan. You are like a person who sculpts amazing images out of rough-looking wood. I think the service and work you have done for me and continued to do has been fantastic. You have given me confidence to take things forward." - Jean Hammond.
Thank you so much for your support in helping me towards my goal and allowing this vision of wellness for women and the planet to flourish and bloom.
Here is what some of the previous participants on the Women's Apprenticeship have said:
"After years of trying to search for answers this training has revealed much to me, and drawn it out from within; clarity, how I operate in the world and a very clear path of what I need to do now. Practical magic! I’m finally feeling at home in myself for the first time ever. The impact has been massive for me." - Adrienne Egan, Maya Massage therapist and healer, 2011/12
"Through the amazing support from Alexandra and the rest of the group as a whole, I am now beginning to grow a confidence to actually dare to share this female wisdom with others." - Sarah Wilks, yoga teacher, 2011/12
"Through this apprenticeship, Alexandra Pope is reconnecting us with our birthrights as women." - Jacqueline Riquez, artist, mother, and menstrual educator, 2011/12
"The best thing I have ever done! To learn to live The Womanly Way, to befriend myself in all (yes, all!) seasons of my menstrual cycle, to delve where I have never delved before, and come out feeling so so alive and juicy wanting to share it with my sisters! This apprenticeship has given me the biggest Mother-Hug of my life! Thanks." - Jane Legge, Engineer, 2012/13