After attending a 3-day event honoring females Devine Feminine in Assisi, Italy the music started to signal the conclusion of the conference. Then, something remarkable was happening: one after another women in the crowd spontaneously arose to the music, dancing around, twisting and turning to celebrate our feminine nature. We danced freely and let the music flow through us. With a lightness of both my body and soul I danced with ease like a child mimicking an nymph through the forest. We literally floated back home. Why can’t we celebrate more often, I’m wondering?
In a recent seminar, one of the participants asked me “How do you celebrate?” This question caused me to pause and reflect. The ways we celebrate are as individual as we are, but they’re often reduced to following a meaningless dogma. For some, it’s chocolate balloons, champagne, or sparkling wine, while for others, it’s wild 50th birthday parties with the caveat “what is happening when you go to Vegas …” But regardless of the mode or celebration, these events nearly always reflect commonplace customs on holidays that are calendar-based and not a specific reason to celebrate. If you’re also the one who is responsible for providing the food, presents, and decorations, the events can be exhausting to the point where they’re not truly celebrations in the slightest!
The reality is that despite all of the “celebrations,” we women aren’t sure we deserve to be being a part of the celebrations. It’s time to consider taking advantage of our right to “bask in the glory” of our uniqueness by locating the right celebrations to express our individuality and spirit. Here are some suggestions to create our own rituals
1.) Remember your family and your friends. One reader wrote to share a story about a pub-crawl which her aunt arranged to honor her matriarchal family line. The youngest was just 16 (shhh!) and the most senior was the oldest, 88 (women were not allowed in the pub in the past). They had a lot of enjoyment celebrating their participation in a powerful as well as admirable bunch of ladies.
Another friend is a celebrant of what she refers to as “Ancestor Day.” They gather with their families and pay tributes to those who passed before her. The celebration of the values and roots that define her life can be rewarding. However, the joy begins by recognizing that the theme and date is her own choice and no person in the hierarchy will dictate what or when she should celebrate!
2.) Create it to be meaningful to you. Peggy Holt, an instructor at Canyon Ranch, describes how one day every year she would celebrate “Holt Holiday” with her children. When they woke up, her, she’d surprise them by presenting a sudden shift in their routine. Rather than being driven to school, they would have the day off and spend time with the family! Since her children are grown , they keep this tradition with these annual celebration days with their children.
To develop your own ritual, think about what motivates you, and respect it. Start by choosing an event that has particular significance. You can then celebrate it by doing something that’s enjoyable for you. On my birthday last year, I hosted a ladies’ dinner party where we celebrated femininity through dances like the Yoni dance. I also take the time of celebrating my newfound mobility that comes with the loss of 100 pounds. When I’ve been on my travels recently I’ve celebrated my new mobility with fun activities such as zip-lining as well as trekking and white-water rafting. Every activity is thrilling!
3.) Have fun by taking a smaller amount of time. We often think that we have to throw a massive party however, small events can be just as pleasant. Even something as simple as purchasing an ebook and taking the time to contemplate it could be a celebration. A sixth Stilletto Step is Self-Celebration, that means instead of becoming a part of the masculine vibe of constantly being busy, we can instead focus on celebrating the inner world we live in.
The most memorable celebrations are the external manifestations of the person we are. This is exactly what happened to spontaneous dancing at Assisi. What are you able to do to honor the unique and distinctive person you are?