A Creative Reclamation
If you are a woman coming into her 50s or already walking the road
If you sometimes feel a stranger to yourself or the world
If the word crone pricks, yet calls
Welcome to the reclamation
What is being reclaimed?
to embody the crone
as a fulfillment
and a genius
Her gifts are abundantly creative
and can be shared when the crone is
recalled, embodied, and honored.
Gather with us as we embody the crone through an exploration of the transition into cronehood that is our 50's (linear time) or our menopause (cyclic time).
Though our culture tries to convince us that this passage is a struggle with diminishment, we believe this tender phase is a gateway into our full creative power.
Rather than abandon or resist the changes inherent to this calling, let’s explore the beautiful and expansive possibilities that await our notice.
Over the course of three weeks, we will explore – in safe and sacred community – several embodiment practices rooted in breath and gentle movement to help return us to the wellspring of our wholeness.
From that place we will explore, supported through writing and simple creative explorations, what it means to listen deeply to the questions at the heart of our being.
Each practice in this experiential workshop is a gentle invitation, free from any pressure to achieve or perform.
"I reckon the time has come to reclaim the rude and unkind words used to describe older women. Hag. Crone. Mutton. Harridan. Witch. Bag. Bint. There is a long old list. Have you ever tried to think of a single appreciative or respectful word to describe a woman past the age of 50? With a wealth of experience, wisdom and tenacity you’d have thought there might be at least one. ”
― Suzi Warren, TwistedTwee
Embody the Crone: a safe community of connection & creative exploration
We have shaped these meetings to allow a spaciousness and focus for meaningful exploration of our embodied experiences, for thoughtful reflection and intentional sharing. Each session will include:
- A different theme around which we'll organize
- An embodiment practice
- A creative prompt
- Time for writing/journaling
- Group reflection/sharing/collaborating
- Gentle guided breath work to conclude
A consistent structure for our time together helps us to ease into the process and allows us to experience our gathering and our musings as meaningful ritual over the course of the three weeks.
We also want to assure you that sharing is always optional, and we have designed the workshop to be collaborative. This means no one person will ever be singled out to read something they have written. Rather we will use what inspires or intrigues us in our writing to create something new as a community.
What we're exploring
We come to this workshop with more questions than certainties, and aware of this: women in the transition of menopause, women entering their 50s are not only misunderstood at best and becoming invisible at worst, they are also a bit of a mystery to themselves.
This is a sacred transition that we are experiencing (physically, emotionally, socially, creatively, intellectually, spiritually…) and our culture does little to support it. Creating space to come together and support, encourage and delight each other feels both important and inspiring.
What are we transitioning toward?
Our elder (or wisdom) years, represented by the archetype of the Crone. For some of us, this is a difficult role to imagine for ourselves. The etymological origin of the word Crone is linked to a shepherding practice of discarding or rejecting the oldest sheep in a flock. Culturally, it has been used as a term of abuse. Yet, as fraught as the word itself may seem, we believe working creatively with it and the archetype can provoke meaningful insight, conversation, and growth.
We are transitioning into a role that our culture tells us to fear. Let's do the opposite.
Let's claim our right to fully embody our hard-earned wisdom
Together we will ask:
- What do we feel when we consider the words "crone" or “elder”?
- What does this transition mean to us?
- What are our gifts?
- What are we leaving behind?
- What have we learned?
- What ceremonies might help us here?
- What sort of community?
- And what rituals to hold it?
We will share with you some of the practices that have been sustaining us thus far, and together discover our way deeper into meaningful connection with our experience, longings, wisdom, and creativity.
"The Cambridge Dictionary online defines this as 'an unpleasant or ugly old woman' or 'in stories, an old woman with magic powers'.
Which basically means the male equivalent would be wizard... infinitely less offensive."
– Claire Cohen, The Telegraph
What to bring & prepare
- A journal or paper and writing utensils
- Comfortable clothing for movement
- A yoga mat or place to lie down comfortably
- A private and quiet space where you will not be interrupted for the duration of our calls*
*We consider this the most important, and the challenge of it for many women has less to do with finding an actual room and more to do with claiming the time and asking significant others, family members, and pets to respect it.
We welcome and value individuals and their differences, including race, economic status, sexuality, ethnicity, national origin, first language, religion and ability.
A long-time educator, Cathy has been creating programs that support creativity, holistic health and mindfulness for more than 15 years. She holds an MFA in poetry, is a certified yoga teacher, a certified holistic health counselor, and a certified TEPP (The Embodied Present Process) facilitator. Her poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart prize and she has been published in both print and online. Cathy lives on ancestral, traditional, and contemporary lands of the Anishinaabeg—Three Fires Confederacy of Ojibwe, Odawa, & Potowatomi peoples—known as Traverse City, Michigan.
"I just completed the last session of a 12-week “Wellness and Mindfulness in the Workplace” with Cathy. I signed up initially because I have enjoyed Cathy's presentations at our local Women in Business seminars. She's an excellent presenter with a wealth of knowledge about mindfulness and creativity. Working with Cathy, you’ll discover depths of creativity and thoughtfulness you may have lost touch with (or perhaps never tapped into)."
—Susan M., Clarkston, MI
Allyson is a passionate body-based coach who has been weaving creativity into daily life in one way or another since childhood. She worked in film, photography, stained glass and graphic design before training and certifying as a certified professional Co-Active coach and as a Facilitator of The Embodied Present Process. Since then she has been introducing embodiment and creative practices into her coaching and workshops, helping women find new expression sourced from within.
"I am struck by the gentle, loving presence I feel from Allyson during each session. This kind of holding space is exactly what my soul needs to emerge with its fullest expression in the world. “
– Sunday Muse, Oakville, ON