In 2014, I sat on a low wooden bench nursing my 6 week old baby boy while wet plaster strips were laid across my face to create a mask. The final activity of the Rise Up and Call Her Name program, a women’s spirituality curriculum by Elizabeth Fisher that I’d been guiding over the course of an entire year, I had shown all of the women in my living room how to make masks and now it was my turn to have the mask material applied. My back was sore and I felt tired and lonely within my plaster shell. As my face faded from view, the women began to talk around me as if I suddenly wasn’t there and as my lips were covered, I became voiceless and closed in, shrouded and silent. When the plaster dried and I emerged again, I saw a dear friend sitting in the recliner drinking tea. While I was not sorry to have finished my commitment to the group and to have closed out the year-long program, I was suddenly awash with a deep longing for rest, a deep longing to be the one in the chair being brought tea, instead of the one to lead the group, baby dangling from her breast, tugged in a million directions by questions and needs.
This moment, this snapshot of maternal priestessing, has recurred for me many times over the last few years, a wondering of why I could not permit myself to be the tea-drinker instead of the hostess, the person to enjoy instead of the person to teach, the person to rest instead of the person to create experiences. Continue reading “Restoration by Molly Remer”