Nancys gentle compassion and open-hearted nature struck me right away, but it was the wisdom she held that mesmerized me. I realized I was meeting a women who had traveled miles to be where she was now and that somewhere along the road she had formed a deep and lasting friendship with herself and found peace. The wise woman shows up in the photos below as well as the goddess, the warrior, the mother, and friend. The archetypes that women embody and that dance through the moments of our lives are the echoes of our ancestral past. We are the sacredness of life itself, knowing itself through imagery. To learn more about the REVEAL process click here.
TRP: Who are you today?
I am a spiritual warrior, a goddess of love…entrusted with awareness of the sacredness of life, and called to be a channel for grace and peace.
TRP: What are the biggest challenge’s that have faced you as a woman?
Owning my voice and my power in the present moment, particularly in my role as mother. Much of my life was spent recycling the past, or worrying about the future, causing me to miss some extraordinary gifts in the present moment. This pattern of disharmony within had a ripple effect on myself and my family, causing me to be disconnected from both. The gift of this experience is that the pain and isolation within the role became the doorway into deeper reflection, spiritual growth, and connection. It was actually the catalyst to healing family relationships and discovering my calling.
TRP: What are some of the issues that you think are important to explore as it relates to being a woman?
Women as wisdom keepers; Legacy; Ancestral ties and healing; Women as natural community builders; Owning the truth of who we are as individuals with extraordinary gifts; the gifts and challenges of living our truth and owning our voices and power; deepening our understanding the gifts of vulnerability in relationship.
TRP: What makes your heart ache?
Judgement…my own or others.
TRP: What frightens you most?
People intentionally hurting one another.
TRP: What do you deeply love? (This can be ANYTHING or ANYONE or ANY PLACE…)
I deeply love God, this earth, and the heavens ~ my husband and children ~ my family and friends ~ the ocean and mountains…and my life. It is significant that I start with God, as my relationship with God had been one of an estranged daughter of a judgmental parent. I spent much of my life feeling not worthy and in fear of God, not recognizing the benevolence, universality and availability of divine love. Now, I experience it in me, and all over creation…in people I meet and each sacred encounter.
TRP: What is your Life Purpose?
To be a bridge for love and understanding. Particularly in relationships. I have a natural affinity for the ebb and flow of energy in relationship, and communication.
TRP: How do you keep yourself inspired by life?
I say yes to relationship…yes to meeting new people, yes to new opportunities, yes to doing things that resonate with me but may challenge me. I take time for quiet and solitude to renew my spirit and connect to divine love within. I get outside in nature. I read. I journal. I live the love.
TRP: Have you ever hit rock bottom? Please share about it if your willing.
Absolutely. Rock bottom for me was in 2009 between January and May when 10 people that were closely related to me or people that were close to me died. Within that year my father and a dear friend were two of them, and I was going through relationship coaching certification, while mothering younger teenage boys. I did not have time and space to adequately grieve at the time, and I remember feeling that my heart was so tender, it felt like someone put velcro on it and ripped it open…raw. I was running on fumes most of the time and kept pushing myself to do more. 5 months later I basically collapsed in grief as I had time and space to allow it to be present and honor these experiences.
TRP: What did it teach you?
I really began to understand the power of experiencing life fully, and began to experience moments of deep connection and joy within deep grief and suffering. I always knew that life was a gift and sacred, but now I had a heightened awareness of the interconnectedness and sacredness of each and every moment, and the power of each of us to make a huge difference in someone’s life. What we do matters, moment by moment. Life and love calls us and reveals gifts to us each day.
TRP: Is there anything in particular that made you feel like being part of the Revelation Project was important to your life right now?
In January of this year I made the decision to enter into a three month sabbatical to rest, renew my mind, body and spirit and honor life’s transitions. I had been in an intentional period of discernment after completing a professional project and the Revelation project felt like an appropriate way to honor me, and cross some new edges! I am in the process of launching a new business and knew that I would be leading a more public life and chose this project as a way to stretch myself into new territory. I was hungry to see what would be revealed, as there was a stirring inside. Also, as a child I had dreamed of modeling, but never pursued it…this was a way to live a childhood dream! Part of me that sensed that I would enjoy experiencing my embodied essence through the lens of a camera, and was curious what would be revealed…Another part of me knew that as I would honor my journey and story it would give others permission to do the same, to share themselves by being seen and known in new ways.
About the shoot.
TRP: What did you think about the approach of the upcoming photo shoot (before you got there) and what were your expectations?
It was an interesting journey. There were a number of months between my intention to have the shoot and the actual studio date. We needed to reschedule twice before the date arrived. In that time I experienced many different thoughts and emotions, from joy to terror, to thinking I was crazy and self-centered to “indulge” myself in this activity. I also was worried about what might be revealed, particularly because I would not see the photos prior to posting. I trusted anyway, allowed myself to feel all of it, and practiced being the observer of my experience. It was quite fascinating to watch my ego and inner critic have a field day with this one!
TRP: How did you feel during the shoot, and was there anything in particular that made you feel more or less relaxed and open to the process?
Incredible. After I got over my own self-judgement (that I wouldn’t like what I would see…me) and the fact that I would need to show up without make-up and allow three women to guide me through this process I surrendered to the day. From the moment I arrived in Rhode Island and connected with Andrea, Monica and Kim outside the studio, I felt supported and loved. We sat in a scared circle together and had the opportunity to pray, meditate, have some dialog and set intentions. Tears began to flow and I could feel a release that was deeper than surface fears for the process. I was releasing patterns from a very tender place. It was around my role and identity as mother and caregiver.
TRP: Use three words to describe the way you felt before we shot:
Excited, nervous, curious.
TRP: Three words for after:
Joy, Peace, Contentment.
TRP: Three words for when you saw the results:
Astounding. Really? Wow.
TRP: After you left, but before you saw the results, what were the thoughts and feelings you were having about your experience? What were some of the things you thought about on the drive home?
At the completion of the experience there was deep contentment and gratitude. I connected to myself deeply and felt a level of support that was incredible. I have been blessed by a number of loving and supportive relationships in my life, however I have never felt the level of compassion and support from women that I experienced in the container created by Andrea, Monica and Kim. One of the greatest gifts was the vulnerability that I was held in. Layers of protective armor that I have shielded myself with over the years gently fell away.
TRP: When you saw the results what was your first reaction and impression?
When I first saw the photos show up on my Facebook page I was SO excited. I could not open them fast enough to see what would be captured from a deeply personal, and deeply fulfilling experience. I found myself wondering what others would think, then I noticed that I didn’t care. It felt so good to stand in the place of being with an experience that was authentic to me.
TRP: What was some of the feedback you received from those who saw your photographs?
Many people commented on how beautiful they were. Some were surprised, particularly by the tribal shots, and were curious to know more about the experience. I found myself very happy to share that the energy that was embodied in those shots was experienced by me many times before, and how pleased I was that the team actually selected those clothes for me, dressed me and the freedom that came with the process. It was wonderful to receive such support and acknowledgment from those who saw the shots…
TRP: How did the feedback make you feel?
Really good. Comfortable receiving. Surprised that by the time the pictures came out I was already living differently…with greater authenticity and transparency.
TRP: Did you learn anything new about yourself from the experience?
I learned to trust and allow myself to receive…particularly from women. I was reminded of the importance of experiencing myself for my pure delight of being, simply because I am alive.
TRP: Do you feel empowered, and if so what parts of your TRP experience were empowering?
Oh yes, very much so. It’s actually hard to differentiate specific aspects because I experienced the whole journey from start to finish as one sacred movement. The most memorable parts of the experience where sacred time I had with each of the women one on one, and in circle at the beginning and end of the photo session…Andrea, for many heartfelt conversations before and during the shoot, Monica for the beautiful intimacy shared as she did my makeup and hair, and Kim for the way in which she moved with me during the shoot, so that we were one. Our energy was a beautiful dance. It was also very empowering to be held and acknowledged in a sacred container of trust with each of them sharing their experiences of me during the shoot. It was a sacred time indeed.
TRP: Since the shoot happened, what is the lasting impact of your experience? Has it altered the way you view yourself and the way you interact in your relationships?
Most definitely. There is a grounded-ness present now and deeper connection to myself and those around me. There is a heightened level of awareness of my own internal experience, essence and it’s expression. In relationships it has helped me to enjoy the diversity of our human experience with another lens, knowing that each one of us is in relationship with him or herself first, and allowing more space for others to bring out their voices in conversations and interactions.
TRP: Do you think it's relevant for other women, and if so why?
Absolutely. Women are often so busy with so many demands that time for self care and self nurturing is often at the bottom of the list. I see this experience as a very special way to honor one’s self, and to be lifted up and supported by other women. The opportunity to share aspects of themselves and their stories is also a huge gift. There is nothing like being seen, known, acknowledged and held in a loving embrace.
TRP: How will you use the photos moving forward; professionally, personally, as gifts?
Professionally on the web and bio/promotional materials. On the cover of my forthcoming book, Daily Sabbatical, personally in my home, and perhaps as gifts…most important is personally in my home.
TRP: Which photo was your favorite, and why?
I have to choose? That’s crazy! I love them all. I was most surprised and enchanted by the tribal ones, because I got to reveal to myself and the world and aspect that is very private and sacred, and I also love the others, because they capture how I feel in moments of playfulness, peace and joy.
TRP: What is your favorite song today, and why?
"Unwritten" Natasha Bedingfield
Because it reminds me that we are co-creating this amazing journey of divine love…and that love is real.
TRP: How would you sum up your TRP experience in one sentence?
The Revelation Project is an opportunity to experience the sacredness of life itself, knowing itself through you.