The single most profound change that I am noticing amongst women, today, is a more overtly shared experience of something that happened to me, as a child.
And continues to happen to me now, as an adult.
And, if you are reading this note, I am certain it happens both to you, and for you.
Although the experience may be confusing.
And sometimes frightening.
And you may not trust it right away.
But you have this almost unnameable but undeniable feeling inside of you that something somewhere somehow wants more for you. More than you can ever have imagined.
When I was about five, the Goddess would come to me, as I was going to sleep at night. She would sit on the edge of my bed, and I would feel her presence. A sensation of liquid gold poured through my body when she was near, a feeling of promise, of hope, of pleasure. It was an invitation to a form of womanhood for which I had no context. It was irresistible. And a north star by which I charted my course, made my way in the world, earned a fine living, broke apart over and over, raised my girl, made love, and set a bunch of pussies free.
Last week, I was in the office, and I picked up the phone when a woman called in to find out about The Experience in December. “Shonda” had seen a Facebook ad for the event, and something sparked inside of her. She shared that when she saw the ad, she thought, “This might be me.” She said she decided to call in because the event was live and in person. What Shonda was longing for was an experience of connection and support with women, in real time. Not online. She confided she has been so busy in her everyday life that she has not been able to be herself. She has not been able to feel the way she wants to feel. Or even dress the way she wants to dress. (Can you relate?) Shonda told me she was longing to come into being herself, and that there weren’t many places for her to be herself.
Shonda wants to connect with other women. And she observed to me — so rightly — that there are not many places to connect live and in person, with women. I agreed, and I explained to her that that is the reason why I began holding these events so many years ago. Women need community. We need each other. We need sisterhood in order to thrive.
Feeling validated, Shonda told me an even deeper truth.
She told me that a voice came to her, and the voice said, “Make your own dress.”
She tried to push it away, but it wasn’t going.
Then she thought, “I want to wear a dress, every day. I never do. I need to connect to my feminine side. I need to make my own dress exactly the way I want to be.” She talked about wearing pants for so long that she forgot what it was like to wear a dress.
It was powerful to witness. I said, “That is so beautiful. You have gotten a sacred download, and the amazing part of this is — you listened. You did not push it away. You know that message is there to take you higher.” (Interestingly enough, the word ‘dress’ comes from the French word ‘dresser’ which means ‘to raise oneself, to prepare, to lift.’ She got a direct download from the Goddess that it was time to take herself higher.)
Listening to the voice of the divine feminine takes some kind of newfangled open-minded courage. Why? Because women have been taught to shut down our desires and inner knowing and spiritual connection from the moment we awaken to them. We are taught to fear and run away from our longings and put a lid on the random, illogical dreams that pop into our imaginations. Like, “Make a dress.”
That demand from the Goddess can seem irrational, irrelevant, unimportant. We have all been taught to turn off those non-linear dreams and downloads.
But this woman, this time, did not.
Shonda followed that dream to take the action of a phone call, even though she did not know how the two could be related. That action connected her to me, and me to her. And in our conversation, she revealed she saw herself making many dresses, even shopping in New York City for fabrics for some of those dresses. She said she knew what kind of fabric she’d use and exactly what her first dress would look like. When I explained how close the Javits Center is to the fabric district, we both felt it was divine providence that had brought us together for both this phone call, and to The Experience. I told her that I would look for her, on Dec. 1, in that magical room full of women, to see and celebrate the dress she made, live and in person. Shonda, I can’t wait.
Regena Thomashauer, aka “Mama Gena”
The School of Womanly Arts
Regena is a feminist icon, a teacher, a speaker, a mother, a best-selling author, and creatrix and CEO of The School of Womanly Arts.