Your Mother’s Story

I was flipping through the birthday calendar which my girls made for me last year for Mother’s day and which is filled with quotes about mothers, when my eye got caught on a particular quote:

Mother's Story - There is a story

“But there’s a story behind everything. How a picture got on a wall. How a scar got on your face. Sometimes the stories are simple, and sometimes they are hard and heartbreaking. But behind all your stories is always your mother’s story, because hers is where yours begins.”

Mitch Albom


I have been reading a fascinating book by Bryan Sykes called “The Seven Daughters of Eve”. In his book, Sykes, who is a leading DNA scientist, gives a report of his research into a specific gene, which passes undiluted from generation to generation through the maternal line. After examining thousands of DNA sequences from all over the world, Sykes found that almost everyone of native European descent, wherever they may live throughout the world, can trace their ancestry back to one of seven women, seven “clan mother’s” who he calls the Seven Daughters of Eve.

His book is written almost like a mystery novel, but what really intrigued me was this idea itself: As Caucasians, we can all trace our history back to the woman who was our ancestor and lived 10,000 to 45,000 years ago.

Usually, we barely think back two or three generations. What is your mother’s story? And what is the story of your mother’s mother? Do you know it?

Mother's Story - book

My mother’s story is one of courage and new beginnings. She grew up during World War II, which pretty much robbed her of any care-free childhood. When she was 21, her mother died and soon after, she packed her suitcase to move to Spain. She learned Spanish and made Barcelona her new home. As a woman in the fifties, coming from a working class background, she never had the privilege of a higher education, yet she made her way in life, working in a bank and later on as a secretary. If she wanted something, she set her mind to it and made it happen. When she was in her early thirties, she set out for yet another adventure, accepting a job in Liberia, Africa where she met my father. Getting married and having children was another new start. And ten years later, she moved to Africa again with her husband and her daughters, this time Nigeria.

My mother’s story is also one of a lot of suppressed pain, grief and other painful emotions. She lost her own mother when she was young and never processed that loss. I hardly know anything about my grandmother’s story because my mother couldn’t speak about her without breaking down in tears. So I stopped asking. Due to all the unprocessed experiences, my mom struggled with addictions, with anorexia and alcohol. She had a hard time with getting older and with life slowing down. She didn’t do “calm” very well. Staying still and being present was “torture” for her. It must have scared her a lot to stop. She loved activity, like talking, laughing, dancing, exercising, playing sports and travelling. The ancestral healing process which Dhebi DeWitz describes in her book “The Messenger Within” is one way of bringing healing to previous generations.

Ruth Monrovia

My story begins when my mother was 37 years old. Back in the sixties, that was old to be a first time mother. She stayed active though, and always looked younger than she was. She was at times a bit overprotective, but she was present, taking on the unfamiliar role of the homemaker, and made the best out of what she felt was expected of her. She encouraged education and understood the longing to discover other horizons. When I moved to Malaysia in my late twenties, and to Canada in my early thirties, she was sad, but at the same time, completely supportive. She understood all about new beginnings.

For me, one way to honour my mom’s story is to encourage my own girls to embrace life to the fullest, to travel, to seize opportunities that come along, to be a master of their own destiny. That for me is a huge part of their grandmother’s legacy. I also believe another part of her legacy is for me and them to learn from her errors. My mom never had the opportunity to process her grief or learn how to address her emotions in a healthy way, to heal her pain. She searched for relief in distractions. Her granddaughters, on the other hand, have all the tools to live life more consciously and I am very grateful to say that they do.

Mother's Day card


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Pain is Not an Enemy

“Pain is not a mistake. It doesn’t mean that something has ‘gone wrong’ in the universe, that the body-mind is ‘broken’ in any way. It is only a signal, an expression of deep intelligence, a loud and clear call for kind, non-judgemental, present-moment attention. It is an invitation to break from your usual routine and plans and patterns, and meet a sacred moment with fresh and unassuming eyes.  Pain is not an enemy of awakening, but a misunderstood friend.” (Jeff Foster)

Not too long ago, by body shut me down. At the time, I was taking the first steps of getting into a situation that my higher self knew was not good for me. It was one of those situations that feel like our vision is finally manifesting. Logically, the situation seemed to have everything I desired, everything I had ever dreamed of. Yet, there was a part in me that knew that this situation wasn’t what it appeared to be. Consciously, I tried very hard to ignore all those signs that pointed to this being an unhealthy situation but my subconscious, that deeper mind which always protects us, did not let me do that.

Within a few hours I went from being able to move freely to a completely frozen shoulder. I could not move my arm at all; I could not lift it, could not reach up or forward, could not embrace anybody without screaming in pain. Several muscles in my body locked down completely. It took me ten days and all sorts of treatments which did not make a big difference in the levels of pain to finally admit to myself what this pain was all about. The moment I made the clear decision not to get into the situation, the pain subsided immediately.

Each time something like this happens to me or one of my clients or friends, I marvel at the wisdom of our body. My body was being very clear. It literally would not let me embrace the situation that had presented itself to me.

To shift out of your pain, listen attentively and with compassion for yourself to the message. What is the physical or emotional pain telling you? What needs to be changed in your life? Then DO IT. Make the changes necessary, no matter how much you are afraid of them! You will not heal unless you listen to your innate wisdom, to your higher mind that is speaking to you through your body!

After you have made the changes or decisions you need to make, use gentle and alternative methods that will help your body heal itself. During that period of healing, affirm to yourself “I am healed!” See and feel yourself restored to your healthy, essential self. Being sick or in pain was just a moment in time, a snapshot, and it served its purpose. Your true self is healthy and whole.


To discover what your body is telling you through your mind, contact me