To Mourn the Ocean

Womb and Wisdom from Bandon Beach

When I was fifteen years old, I took one of the only vacations I’ve taken with my family that holds happy memories for me as an adult.

My father had a friend who owned a cabin on the outskirts of a little town on the Oregon coast called Bandon, known for its rocky beaches and majestic storms. My parents, my brothers and I took a quick flight from California and I fell in love.

I felt at home in the forests, where fairies buzzed like twinkling lights and whispered to me, and laughed in my ears like jingling bells.

couldn’t get enough of the water.

I loved to watch Mother Ocean dancing with the giant rock formations, her waves cresting and crashing on their jagged mossy surfaces. I could sense the mermaid spirits stirring beneath her shifting, foaming currents.

I knew that I belonged here. It was my home, on the inside. I’d never felt home like that before.

At Bandon Books, the little shop downtown by the dock, I bought Brian Froud’s glorious illustrated work called “Fairies.” It’s one of my favorites to this day. I remember clutching it on the flight back home like it was a forgotten treasure recovered. Some piece of me to be guarded with my life and cherished forever in solitude.

Back at the end of 2017, my partner and I decided we needed to move from the bustling, frenetic, increasingly costly environment of Silicon Valley in California to somewhere more our speed.

Bandon called out to me like an old lover. It was my first choice. We easily secured a little townhouse that was a short ten minute walk from Bandon Beach, with a little backyard and a neighbor who owned a pig, called Tulip. We packed all of our belongings (including our two kittens) into my little Honda Fit and a U-haul truck and drove all night long to our new home. We’ve never looked back.

Living here in Bandon has been like a dream. I’ve grown accustomed to the sound of the fog horn lulling me to sleep each night. My evening walks have given me a quiet solace my spirit has scarcely otherwise known.

We have made a home here that is safe, sacred, comfortable, harmonious, and stable. It has provided the missing experience of “home” that I lacked during my upbringing. In fact, it is the only place and time in my life that I have ever really felt the sensation of “home.” Of belonging in an actual physical space. I never knew how great of a cavern this need had created within me until I had filled it.

And now, on this winter solstice day, with the aid of the light of the pregnant moon, I am faced with the impossible task of letting this place go.

I must let the currents of my life carry me towards expansion.

For me, this means community. This means breaking away from the isolation of our little Bandon bubble and welcoming in new family. Building a new home with other souls, creating communion and healing together. This desire for community has been so paramount in my consciousness for so long, it is an inevitable step. And I feel my soul pulling at me in this direction.

But I am also heartbroken. Many inner children and internal aspects are frightened and so very sad.

I fought them for a good long while. I tried to cast aside the parts of me who did not want to give up the safety of the home Antoine and I have created here. The parts who long for the ocean from morning until night, and feel they might die without her. But the more I fought, the more that grief sat heavy on my chest. The more my spine twisted and my muscles clenched in agonizing resistance.

Until I let go into the reality that I am mourning.

This town really has been like a lover to me. Leaving the Ocean here is as real to me as the experience of leaving any lover has ever been.

My body is actually experiencing this transition in the exact same way I would experience a breakup. It’s as though I am breaking up with someone with whom I am still deeply in love.

I’m sure you know that feeling all too well.

Not wanting to let go. Knowing I have to. Feeling the pull of all the positive, meaningful elements of the connection, the grief blinding me from seeing any of the number of very valid reasons the separation must occur. Walking around weighted down by sadness in every breath. Waking up to that ache straight away in the morning.

There are a few seconds where you forget, and then like a tidal wave it rushes back in and floods your system with melancholy. You end up lying there, just feeling it instead of getting out of bed, and it’s like an elephant sitting atop your chest, crushing the organs beneath it and shortening your breath.

Sometimes we feel we lack the proper context to be experiencing grief, so therefor it should not exist within us. And we disallow it and dis-acknowledge it. But that doesn’t change the reality of what is occurring in our body. Major life changes are like tiny deaths, and they occur often. They register in the body in a similar way to when a loved one has died.

I want to feel only the excitement of what is new and what is to come. I want to feel unbridled joy and momentum as I move forward. But I do not, because I am in mourning. My body tells me so. And wishing it were different just doesn’t help.

I must feel the death of the old, the falling away of the leaves in winter, before I can relish in the wonder and freshness of spring. If only you could skip a step…but it doesn’t work that way.

So each day, I drive to the ocean. I sit at her feet as the waves lap and I cry. I moan and I wail. I allow my body to shake and my heart to break open and pour out to her, until the storm calms and the flood inside ceases for a time.

I’ve been talking with her every day. Asking her for help. Telling her how much I love her. Thanking her. Crying out for her guidance.

She has told me many things that have brought me comfort, and she has gifted me with much wisdom.

Bandon Beach at Sunset

I know her love for me is just as vast as mine for her. I know she feels my life is her life, and my womb is her womb. I know because she told me. She has shown me my Lemurian aspects who have lived beneath her very waters for centuries. She’s told me of ancient and recent past incarnations I have spent by water’s edge. She knows my heart. She is me and I am her.

And she will always be with me.

She showed me that much of the grief I feel upon leaving her side is the grief and pain of disconnection from my own womb, the seat of the creation of the goddess.

It is who I am, this energy of the sacred sacral chakra of woman, and yet, by the hands of men it’s power has been hidden from me since childhood.

Being cut off from this vital current of feminine life force energy has had a dramatic negative impact on my life.

I vacated from my womb after experiencing the trauma of forced and repetitive penetration during rape. It was too much for my Being to contain. My consciousness had no choice but to leave that part of my body and being, considering the immensity of the terror and pain I felt, and the lack of others around me who could allow the impact of this trauma to be felt, held, seen, processed and integrated.

I abandoned my own deep waters.

I lost my own Mother Ocean. I have been looking for her ever since.

This morning, when I visited Bandon Beach and communed with her she gave me a specific message. I channeled her energy through my body, and listened.

She gifted me these profound words, and a meditation which I will invite you to do as well, if you feel so called.

This is what she said:

“You’re not really leaving, from Our perspective. You have always been here. You will always be here. You will always Belong with us.

There are aspects of you who live inside this very sea, with whom you are connected. Whom you feel. For this is your home. From centuries and generations past, this is your home. This is why it is so painful for you. All of the imprints of your other lives—the grief that you felt, the pain that you felt, the solace that you felt here, in the water…it is all surfacing.

You will always be a part of us. You are One with the Mermaid Folk. You are One with the Ocean. You should know this. You can call on us whenever you need. When you need the strength of your Lemurian counterparts, you may call on us. We live INSIDE of you.

Practice breathing our energy into your womb, and spreading it throughout your body. This is your Life Force. It is the very same.

And this is also why it is so painful to leave. You believe that you will be cut off from your life force once again. You believe you will be separated from your womb.

But that separation occurred at the hands of Man, long before you were here. This has been a healing, a time for that separation to mend. This is why you feel such grief. This is why you don’t want to leave. You mourn the connection to your own Feminine Power. You mourn your own womb.

Take me with you. Take us with you in your womb. We love you. We have always loved you. We will always love you.

Each day, do a meditation to draw in Our energy. Draw it into the womb. Let it expand and breath it throughout your entire body.

Know that this is You. I am You.

I am Mary Magdalene. I am Isis. I am the Queen. I am the seat of the throne of the Goddess. I am Power. I am Weightlessness. I am Light. I am Darkness. I am Life.

I am Creation.

I am Creation.

I am Creation.

I am Creation.

And you, my child…repeat this as you do this meditation. For you are CREATION itself.

We love you.”

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copyright © 2020 Julia Phoenix Eleven.

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*Disclaimer: I am not a licensed psychotherapist or psychiatrist, and cannot offer medical or psychiatric advice.