Kindness.

Sometimes you just need that feeling of support from those around you and those who believe in you. That what you do, makes sense. That what you do, is appreciated. 

Last Monday I couldn’t travel to France as I felt ill. Headache, raw throat, feeling cold, having my period and feeling incredibly tired. I decided to postpone my journey. As I try to travel sustainably it will take at least 24 hours before I arrive in Perigueux, instead of a couple of hours by plane and train, so better feel healthy on the way, also with this Coronavirus still heavily present everywhere. 

I slept a lot these past days and started to feel better. Luckily it didn’t take long, it’s quite shitty to feel unwell when you’re all by yourself. Yesterday I logged in on Facebook and saw a private message from one of the editors of Elephant Journal that just made my day and somehow I needed these words of support. She wrote me that my Eating Animals article was very close to her heart and that she had shared it widely with others and asked her colleague editors to comment as well. She really pushed my article these last days.

Those who are familiar with writing for Elephant Journal know that you need to have many reads, comments and hearts, before you can earn some cash with it. Although I don’t write with money and scores in my mind, it can be a kind of recognition for my work and ofcourse that is very welcome. I have to say I don’t like it at all to ask friends and family to read my articles and to help me raise the score. I share my articles on social media and always ask for the hearts, comments, shares, if the reader feels inspired, but usually it’s only just a few people who really take the time to do that. The thing is my articles are not about astrology or love, but mainly about uncomfortable things, such as the eating animals article and that certainly isn’t the first thing people like to read.

But when I opened the article again, I received over more than 20 comments – that never happened before. Thanks to this amazing editor, who believes in this piece and that means the world to me (as it is also very close to my heart). Thank you for your kindness and support Sukriti Chopra.  

When was the last time you were surprised by somebody’s kindness and support? Write it in the comments and tell that person! 💚

Con Amor,

Eva

13 Quotes to Stir Up the Wild Woman Within {article on Elephant Journal}.

“If we surrendered to earth’s intelligence, we could rise up rooted, like trees.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Nervous breakdown

Aged 30, Dr. Sharon Blackie, psychologist and mythologist, found herself weeping in the car park of the multinational corporation where she worked, wondering if this was what a nervous breakdown felt like. Somewhere along the line, she realised, she had lost herself and so began her long journey back to authenticity, rootedness in place and belonging, says the description of her book “If women rose rooted.”

It happens every now and then; you’re reading a book and right from the first page it speaks to you. From the beginning to the end and beyond, you and this book are best friends. It’s comforting and it’s impossible to put away.

Deep wisdom

If women rose rooted” by Dr. Sharon Blackie is such a book. It’s a deep mythological book, like the classic “Women who run with the wolves” by Jungian analyst Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés. I read it last year and I will read it again this year. The wisdom she shares in this book is mind-blowing. Sometimes it reads like poetry; it wants to tell you something, something that lies deep down and we never took the time to listen until now.

Every woman, with or without a corporate job, being a mother or childless, in a relationship, married or single and regardless where she is on her path, this book helps to find back which was lost along the way. It’s about female strength, about heroines in cultures and history who have been forgotten in our Western society and whose stories are lost.

There are times I feel the urge to nourish my soul with profound wisdom, rather than eating cake, crisps, and chocolate, to find peace and consolation. This book gives me both comfort and the courage to look deeply into my life and the state of Mother Earth.

By this book I started to think about my journey, a “Heroine’s Journey,” as Blackie calls it. I started this journey some years ago when I left my legal profession behind and moved to a Mediterranean island with my love, because we wanted to live simply, with the values that were more aligned with whom we were.

On the way, I took some turns to find out I still wasn’t doing the work that truly meant something to me. I started to write, we moved to an ecological tiny home that my partner constructed for us, and I learned about plant-based food—these were the few things that changed my perspectives. I’m still on my way.

Weak moments & baked potatoes

Somehow this book opened my eyes to find more truth and meaning in my life. It’s certainly not the path society carved out for me. There are weak moments I heavily doubt our minimalist lifestyle, which feels uncomfortable at times. (not in the article: This last week I was overwhelmed by doubts and the negative feelings about myself, that I’m not enough and that kind of bullshit. I know I can reach out to some dear and wise friends, my family and my sweet man, but somehow I can’t even explain it to myself, so I rather go through it and find consolation in books and warm hugs and baked potatoes on the woodfire by Dorus (instead of the bag of crisps ;-). I’m lucky that I have so much love around me.

Such blue days are followed by days when I find myself in utter happiness and gratefulness for the choices we’ve made together so far.

Let me share some of Blackie’s wisdom by means of these thought-provoking quotes from her book and let it be of benefit for those women who are looking for authenticity and belonging in their lives.

“To change the world, we women need first to change ourselves — and then we need to change the stories we tell about who we are. The stories we’ve been living by for the past few centuries — the stories of male superiority, of progress and growth and domination — don’t serve women and they certainly don’t serve the planet.”

Would you like to read the rest of the breath-taking quotes? Click here !

Con Amor desde Mallorca,

Eva

Lessons on grief after I lost my dad.

This December it will be twenty years ago since I lost my dad to leukemia. Snowflakes fell down from heaven the day we buried him. For a second the white world looked serene and pure; harmless even.

I still remember how unreal it felt and how overwhelmed and lost I was. I couldn’t speak when I tried to recite a poem on his funeral; there were only tears and raw grief. Two days later it would have been his birthday. For months I thought I saw my dad at places where he could not be. I saw him walking, but it wasn’t him. I saw life was vulnerable.

Finding my way through grief has made me a compassionate human being. I have experienced what it means to grieve, how it feels to wake up in the morning and it seems impossible to wash away the aftertaste of the nightmare I’m in. I have learned to understand grief, but it doesn’t mean that I always know how to react in the right way, if there were such a thing as a “right way”. I can be speechless when someone tells me about the loss of a beloved person. Sometimes mourning can only be answered by a silent embrace as it is too deep to fathom and too heavy to carry.

Yet, we will be able to carry a heavy loss, something we never could have imagined before. We will go through the sorrow by taking three steps forward and two steps back. We will see through the sadness the appearance of a sudden smile. We will walk through the messy battlefield of life and death, maybe not fearlessly, but more accepting than before.

Grief will lose its sharp edges until it becomes softer and a part of us, where it finds a home to stay. I feel the pain has found a home within me as it has turned into a place of comfort, warmth and gratefulness. It’s no longer a place of panic and chaos.

It has taken me twenty years to feel peaceful about my father’s death. His face appears at moments when the world around me looks shiny and without a single worry. When I cycle through the green fields, the sun shines on my back and I’m all by myself. When I’m mesmerizing while I try to write. When I’m with my mom, sister and brother, drinking glasses of wine and having conversations about who did what, where and when, and each of us has a different story to tell.

I see his smiling face.

Twenty years passed by and still so close, regardless the country’s borders I have crossed so far. I guess my dad travels with me wherever I go.

We are stronger than we think we are. We are resilient beings, capable of so many things. In uncertain times we need to remember this as it helps us to keep our sanity. We must not be afraid to ask for support when we feel there’s nobody to share our sorrow with. We must lift the taboo on grief and death. In this human existence where living a slow life is the exception, we should take our time to mourn and we shouldn’t be ashamed for taking that time. Don’t be afraid to ask your parent or friend how they’re feeling after a major loss, even after much time has passed. Yes, death is part of life, but it shouldn’t be the end of the conversation as it usually is when someone tells us these words.

In western cultures we are assumed to get over our grief quickly. The sooner we go back to normal life, the better. And nobody asks us about our loss anymore.

Death is death. The way we are dealing with something so important as death could do with more compassion and understanding, also with regard to ourselves. We can’t heal our wounds when we are rushed and without caring for ourselves. It needs time and patience and compassion. This we should wish each other and ourselves. It’s nothing to be ashamed for. Of course, the way how we’re dealing with death is personal and also depends on our traditions and cultures, but no one will be saved from death and therefore it’s deeply universal. Similar to death, does compassion go beyond borders, cultures and traditions.

In times of mourning it’s more important than ever to be open about grief and to care for each other with compassion. It makes us, as human beings, more complete and more beautiful. In a world where countries are burning and we don’t seem to understand how to save them from destruction, we shouldn’t forget this.

Earlier published on Elephant Journal:

https://www.elephantjournal.com/2019/10/lessons-on-grief-after-i-lost-my-dad-eva-de-vor/

Show my article some support by giving it a heart, comment and/or share on the Elephant Journal article page – if you feel inspired to – Thank you! ❤️

Con Amor,

Eva

Image by Laura Makabresku

My Powerful and Simple Antidote to an Overwhelmed Mind {column Elephant Journal}.

The week has started well: a new publication on Elephant Journal 🐘

“…the cold iron and hard rubber of a thing that keeps me moving and balanced…”

Read it here

Hearts and comments on the article page and / or shares are welcome when you might feel inspired 🙂

Con Amor,

Eva

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