We went to the beach. Just me, my daughter and my love, off on our usual morning adventures.
And my love took a photo of me and Ostara, toes in the water.
When I looked at it, I couldn’t help but remember.
Two years ago, we arrived here.
After eight years of living in the city, we moved back to Proserpine, my small hometown.
We came back for many reasons: to live closer to my family, to reduce our mortgage and most of all because I thought Proserpine was the place I would always return to, that it was the place I would raise my child.
We bought the small cottage that my grandmother used to live in – even though it wasn’t our dream home.
“Two years,” we said. “We’ll stay in the cottage two years and it will be our stepping stone.”
At the time, we thought that the next stone to step upon would be to build on my parent’s farm.
But then life happened.
As it does.
If I could sum up the last two years, I would call them “Illusion Breaking.”
I lost my illusion that I had a close-knit family of origin. I lost the illusion that my parents would be together forever. I lost the illusion that I needed my family to approve of me. I lost the illusion that I needed to choose my family of origin over everyone else – especially my husband and family of creation.
I lost my illusion that I was perfect. I realised with startling clarity just how much I was wrong about, and I took great heaving breaths of laughter. All this time, I thought my hunky husband needed to change. And it was me all along. ME! Can you imagine?
Do you have any idea how happy this makes me? That I can change and I can grow and I can be SO much wiser than ever before!
I have learned how to have boundaries. How to discover them and communicate them. What to do when your boundaries keep getting trodden on anyway. I have learned how to become the sovereign queen of my own land.
How to make choices that are my own, not choices that are my parent’s conditioning or a genetic lineage.
It’s been awful, confronting, incredible, exhilarating and thrilling all at once.
I am wiser, and stronger, and more compassionate than I ever have been.
The barn burned down in my life.
And I saw a castle there instead.
We don’t talk about this enough, you know.
Of what it takes to form a marriage with someone. Of the grief and the necessity of transferring your loyalty from your family of origin to your husband and children.
And yet it is so essential: this is how the human species continues to grow… by branches of the family tree falling, digging deep into the earth, sending their own roots down and bearing forth their own new tree.
I’m talking about this because it is terrifying to be so vulnerable and honest and yet I must.
So many parts of my life have been wiped slate-clean.
My husband, my daughter, my soul and my work are the most important things that remain.
And how can I say that even though a storm raged its way through my life,
I am grateful that it did?
I am deeply grateful that I learned the lessons I did.
I am SO glad that I have become even more of myself.
I am bees-knees enthralled at how strong and clear I am becoming.
I am clear-sighted. I feel more whole. I feel more alive.
I’m not bound, I’m not mistaken, I’m not confused.
I had to do this. I had to learn this. I had to become this.
It had to happen.
We’ve done so much inner work, my love and I.
He, as always, has been my journey companion.
At each turn in the path I turn to see – and there he is, right beside me.
He devotedly does his own work, just as I do mine.
And we evolve. We change. We transform. We grow.
And we do it on paths side by side.
Sometimes he’s a bit ahead of me.
Sometimes I’m a bit ahead of him.
Sometimes we knock against each other. Sometimes we misunderstand.
He lets me make my own mistakes. He never, ever does what any one else tells him too – he trusts his instinct completely.
It can be confronting to me.
(“If you only do what I say,” I tell him. “Then we wouldn’t have any fights! Ever!”)
(I am only partly joking when I say it.)
And always the scales balance and align,
and I look beside me to see his bright blue flash of eyes.
I see the man who has always looked deep inside me.
My kindred Scorpio – my teacher, my student, my love, my guide.
It is our 1 year wedding anniversary this month, our 11 year fall-in-love-aversary. He gives me an eternity ring. I know it to be true. We are far too stubborn and far too committed to growing together than to consider any other option but eternity.
And as we did this inner work together,
as the storms raged and subsided,
we began to heal and understand and know.
And I had wild adventures in Proserpine with a posse of incredible women.
We decided to change the town into a Goddess paradise. We ate a lot of cake and had spontaneous, laughter-soaked dates every damn week.
They inspired me, these women. They healed me. They were a radiant ball of light in my life.
I am so grateful.
And the tides turned, and I knew I wasn’t the same person I was before the storms began. The storms of family shit and PND.
And so much of my life didn’t fit anymore.
So I let go.
I let go of my mermaid hair.
My book collection.
My art collection.
My stash of journals.
And most of all, I let go of old dreams. (I wonder if there is a place where Dreams Go To Die Gracefully?)
And then I let go of my town.
I thought Proserpine was my forever town, that it was my dreaming.
And I see now that it most of all was my parent’s dreaming, not mine.
That a different life was calling me.
That my sweet lil family and I needed something more in order to be nurtured, supported and cultivated.
“Two years,” we said. “Two years we will live in this house, and it will be our stepping stone for the next thing.”
And so we did.
We waited, and the stepping stone revealed itself to us:
You must make another big move. Proserpine isn’t where you belong anymore.
And my love and I debated on two towns for one night. Byron Bay in the south, Cairns in the north.
In the morning I said:
Your town wins. I trust your intuition. Let’s go.
It’s a town that has gorgeous schools for my daughter.
A university for my love to finish his Psychology degree.
A city that feels already like it is singing to us.
And it bares a similar name to the beloved city of Canberra that held us so well for eight years.
It turns out, the stepping stone was right.
From Canberra to Cairns.
And of course, since making the decision, everything has fallen into place.
The signs have lined up with ease. The universe has whispered yes, yes, yes.
We’ve taken a giant leap of faith and said YES to living in our dream house for a year.
A treehouse in the rainforest.
I can see myself there. Happy. Looking out over the trees. Cherishing my loved ones.
It has a huge office studio too.
I can set my desks up. Look out over the calm and the peace and be nourished. Set up a video studio. An art studio. Create more miracles and wonders.
It feels like the dreamiest place to dream.
I’ve done all I needed to do here.
I’ve fulfilled my own prophecy of Persephone.
I came, I created magic, I met beautiful souls.
I got to mentor teenage girls at my old high school.
I learned the lessons and the medicines I needed.
I had two boxes of my books left.
I didn’t want to take them with me.
I wanted to know what to do with them.
And in a flash last night, it came to me.
A few calls this morning, and it’s all perfect and aligned:
I’ll be donating 50 copies of my book to my old high school for teenage girls who are needing it.
This makes my heart happy.
This feels like the deepest, most loving parting gift I can give Proserpine.
A generation of girls growing up with a glowing reminder of just how beautiful they are, just how sacred and true and right and good life can be. Even when it’s hard, it can be good. That we are worthy.
And another incredible transformation?
I let go of the idea of doing it all on my own.
I let go of being unsupported.
And I took a deep breath, a big leap of faith.
Starting next week, Marissa will be my very first full time employee.
And I’m supporting myself from the roots up with an incredible intuitive healer, and from the top down with a business coach.
Every which way: support.
I let go of doing it all on my own. I let go of being unsupported.
There was still more to let go of though. Not just my illusions, not just my home, not just my old ways of doing things. There was still more that didn’t fit any longer.
Still more that whispered at my insides, that flamed up in my heart.
It was time to let go of my name.
It happened all of a sudden.
We had a date with our gorgeous friend Trish for a photo shoot on the beach.
And I went to adorn myself in my usual way for these things:
long magenta dress with fairy sleeves, jewellery galore, a bindi or eight…
true hippy getup, ya know?
And all of a sudden, it felt too heavy.
So I thought:
And instead, I donned a simple turquoise sundress and a golden calcite heart necklace my one true scorpio love gave to me.
And it felt just right.
And we were sitting in the sand after the photos,
and I was drip-drying myself off in the sun after these endeavours:
And I squeezed water through my hair and hands
and I looked out to sea.
And all of a sudden,
it came to me.
I’m not Goddess Leonie anymore
Trish’s eyebrows raised, and Chris smiled that smile of his that says I-knew-this-already-but-I-was-waiting-for-you-to-work-it-out and Ostara cooed over the birds.
Who are you then?
Just Leonie. Leonie is enough.
And there was the truth, as simple and stark in the sand as the whitest of shells.
A truth that felt so dazzling and light that it felt true and good and right.
Now don’t get me wrong.
I am still the hippiest of hippy. I’ll be the first to coo over oracle cards and crystals and superfoods and Birkenstocks.
Those years of goddesshood have been the best, most glorious, sacred fun of my life.
And I’m also not just her anymore.
I’m more now.
She is a part of me, and yet not all of me.
She is so deeply integrated that I don’t need to call her out all the time anymore.
I’m Leonie now. Just Leonie.
And it’s bright and it’s dazzling and it’s good enough.
It’s sacred without me even needing to say it.
It’s all been 100% necessary. 100% needed.
These past few years have been so transformative for me, and I have been reborn.
God I am grateful.
I am still here to help other women.
Still here to be an earth angel.
My dream has always been, and continues to be:
To help over one million people heal.
What do I want to do now?
I want to keep creating.
Keep giving birth to the signs, the words, the insights that are born into my soul.
I want to keep sharing about my journey – as a mama, artist, entrepreneur, soul.
I want to help women be happy. Shining bright.
I want to create deeply transformative products + live events.
My life has been changed and shaped dramatically by becoming an entrepreneur.
By far, it is the deepest, most profound, challenging, incredible soul journey I have ever been on.
It has taught me more than anything else. It is the biggest self development opportunity I have experienced.
This world of sharing and offering your gifts to the world and helping others, and learning how to help as many people as possible in a powerful way… it’s become something I have learned so deeply of.
I want to help other earth angels help more people. I want to help them to earn wonderful incomes and gorgeous prosperity from this so they can stay totally immersed in the thing they love and that they are good at.
Business is the most profound tool to do this. And I never EVER thought I’d adore business as much as I do.
But now I see what it truly is:
Just like you. Just like me. Just like everything else on this planet.
It can be a vehicle to change our lives, change each other’s lives and change the world.
I see it so clearly now.
I want to help. I want to share what I know. I want all of us to be bringing our gifts out in a BIG way to help as many people heal and grow as possible. That’s what this world needs.
Freedom, possibility, opportunity. Gifts ablaze, healing asunder.
I don’t know exactly yet what is coming, what it will look like.
I know it will still be about the same old thang:
sacred. joy. creativity. living a gorgeous life. being an earth angel. becoming a business goddess. sacred art life happiness love mamahood soul.
I’m still waiting for the mists of avalon to be rolled back to see the new vision.
I’m in the place of deep pregnancy, waiting for the birth of what wants to be born.
I don’t know exactly.
And yet inside my belly, I feel this thrill of joy.
This absolute KNOWING that everything is going to be okay. If not wonderful.
As part of this transformation, I’m following my spirit.
GoddessGuideBook.com will soon become LeonieDawson.com.
I’m now Twittering as @Leonie_Dawson and Instagramming as the same.
It feels light, bright, freeing and true.
There is nothing to do but move forward.
I think often of the kangaroo – an animal that is physically unable to move backward.
I can’t go back to the Leonie of three years ago even if I wanted to.
She’s changed. She’s evolved from that.
And I don’t want to go back, don’t need to go back.
I’m so proud of myself for who I am right now.
I am giddy in love with this vision that is being born.
I am grateful for the medicine and lessons that have brought me here.
It’s all good.
Onwards. Ever onwards.
We can only move forward, never back.
There has been so much change in my life, and yet so much has stayed the same:
this steadfast knowing. this total infatuated-love at how beautiful this world is. this deep-kindred connection with spirit. the love and radiance that is just a moment’s glance away.
All I need do is look at the sky. Open up and type. And the words pour out, all the words and the faith and the wisdom. Everything I’ve ever needed to know.
This week we move.
To a city that feels like it will nourish us, inspire us, support us. That ticks all our boxes.
To a home nestled into the rainforested mountain that takes my breath away, that fills every dream of mine I’ve ever had. Pole frame? tick. Spa bath? tick. Floor to ceiling windows looking over the rainforest? tick. Huge studio to dream in? tick.
As my mother-in-law says “It’s almost like this house and you were meant to be.”
A dream home. A nourishing town.
And into the Great Beyond.
I know there is magic waiting to be created and shared. I can’t wait to see what it is.
Thank you for sharing this journey with me.
I am so grateful you are here. And I am so excited to share with you as this path keeps evolving, keeps glowing anew.
So here I am, my love.
Hola beautiful souls!
The moment your baby arrives, you fall in love. Head-over-heels with this incredible light that your body helped bring into the world.
And in the hours that follow, some time between the feeding and the nappy changing and the soothing and the next feeding, a thought suddenly paralyses you:
How am I EVER going to get ANYTHING done again?
I remember feeling really overcome with fear. How on earth was I EVER going to even be able to take a shower again – much less make art? I had no hands, no arms, no body, no space, no time to call my own.
Over the months, I learned. I learned the big and the hard way that I NEEDED art in my life. I NEEDED to create just as much as I needed to breathe. And that creating with a kid required a totally new skillset and mindset (it’s why I recorded the video workshop of Creating with Kids).
Along the way, I’ve learned how to incorporate creating into my mamahood routine.
Here’s my 11 secrets to being a Creative Mama + Getting Stuff Done!
1. I don’t brush my hair. The only beauty routine I have is spraying this stuff on my face as moisturiser. And occasionally getting my eyebrows & eyelashes tinted (they are naturally uber-blonde thanks to my Danish heritage, and can disappear otherwise. Which is cool. Sometimes I rock the uber Scandinavian golden look, sometimes I rock the more tinted & defined look.) Point of this: I only do what’s necessary.
2. Washing gets done once a month. Give or take. It doesn’t get ironed. When it is washed, it just sits in big tubs, and we pick & choose from there. I only fold & put away into shelves if that feels like a fun thing to do & can be assed. I have better things to do with my time. Like make art and be happy.
(Making art + throwing it down hills with kids! BLISS!)
3. We eat very simple meals. Sometimes they are pre-prepared. Sometimes they are organic, mostly they are not. We make it as doable, easy and healthy as we can. Simple food is good. We spend less than 10 minutes preparing meals each day. (Current meals we love: pesto pasta with broccoli and peas. salad & chicken wraps. spaghetti with kidney beans and zucchini.)
4. After my unhappy experience of attempting to be a well-rounded super mum, we have developed a very simple list of prioties in our family.
What to spend time on
(Art includes art, writing, learning about things we love, reading, creating – those things that set us alight, you know?)
Everything else comes after those two things.
5. I include Ostara in projects wherever possible. I get over the fact that she will put her own baby-paw-prints and energy into it too.
6. I let go of how I used to make art. I accept that how I make art is different now, and is usually a bit more wild and messy.
7. I have special one-on-one time with Ostara everyday while Chris has time with himself & studies his Psychology degree.
Then in the afternoons, Chris has special one-on-one time with Ostara everyday while I have time with myself, work on my business, create and write and make art by myself.
We are able to share parenting because we’ve set up a really beautiful 6 figure business together. It has given us so much freedom and is so empowering. I am so grateful I became a Business Goddess.
Having said that, it’s still an endless balancing act trying to make sure we all get our needs met, and we all get done what we need to get done. We make it happen though. Coz that’s just what parents do.
(This was a morning doing a photo shoot + recording new videos… my hunky husbo recorded while Ostara played around us. Totally a family event! It takes longer, has roughly 3.2 billion interruptions, but stuff still gets created. That’s all that matters.)
8. I embrace the fact that it’s not going to be perfect. If I feel like recording a podcast, I realise that I’m going to go batshit crazy if I try and record it at home on my professional microphone, demanding NO SOUND from my daughter, love and dogs. That’s Mission Impossible. So what you’ll find instead in podcasts is me speaking directly into my laptop built-in-mic, either up a tree, or sitting outside our library in the middle of a tropical rain deluge. There is background sound. It’s not “perfect.” But it got MADE.
9. The stuff that I’ve tried to make perfect has NOT been made. Just ride your wild donkeys, people!
Some lovely friends + I had a goddess photoshoot at the wetlands… and Ostara was a part of course. She’s become my little creative buddy!
10. We try and make our lives as gentle and conducive to making art as possible. Because that’s what makes our spirits happy.
11. I realise my life is so much more incredibly beautiful and happy when I make my art. I am my better self when I get to create. It makes my heart and soul sing. And that’s the very best thing that I can bring to mothering: my own happy soul.
Happy Mother’s Day, beautiful souls.
May you magically mother yourselves just as you need.
May you know you are perfect just as you are.