August 21, 2017: New Moon Solar Eclipse: Embracing our Totality

Aug 21st, 2017 Posted in Astrology Aspects | No Comments »

On August 21st, the long awaited and anticipated north nodal new moon total solar eclipse of the Sun in 28 degrees of fixed sign Leo is upon us. This is all occurring over a two hour period peaking at 11:28/1:28/2:28 respective to time zones with areas of totality arcing exclusively over the continental United State which has not happened for 98 years.

Unless you were in the path of unplugged totality, you know there is a lot of   interpretation, and predictions regarding this unusual event. Ecilpse glasses, some of them unauthorized are sold out – people traveling to the 13 states and locations of totality are being flooded with astro and sky lovers wanting a view of this dance between the Sun, Moon and the Earth. Some traditions, such as Vedic and Navaho speak of this as a time to stay indoors and not activate the body or mind and rather then exposing one’s self to the moments when the Sun is being obstructed into darkness but to rather move into stillness, meditate and pray. Others describe this time as life changing, by the inspiration other eclipses have given them. There are so many posts, articles, vlogs, blogs and discussions that I have personally wondered if the energy surges to my nervous and energetic systems are being triggered more from too much expectation, fear and excitement rather then the approaching shifts but either way, it’s reminding me of the build up to 12/21/12. Nevertheless this interception of the Sun by the shadow of the Moon offers a profound moment for self empowerment and evolution.

I will be offering my 2 cents to speak to that potential arcing over a few concepts to keep in mind and heart during this time to optimize this potent period for healing and growth with consideration what this might mean for you are a cosmic being -remembering that -as above so below -as within so without -that what is happening at a macro collective time of upheaval and change is happening inside us as well and it is inside us that the only real change can be made and through that inner conscious re set and soul level upgrade is the most direct way to influence the collective evolutionary initiation we are living in. The saying “we are the ones we have been waiting for” was written for this moment.

I want to go over a few key dates for you as they will create a map of the waves or flow that we are being activated and influenced hopefully you will feel the intentional wisdom of the cycle.

First of all let’s set this stage by acknowledging that the Sun is the epicenter of life force, always whole and stationary -it is a stream of life living energy.

When this source of solar power is obscured it creates a moment of disorientation: day becomes night, temperature drops, birds loose their flight path, the world wobbles and in that moment our own individual patterns give thrown off. It is in the dark, the disorientation and psychic death of sorts that an inner re-set creates a game changing shift. The way to see this is the life force is cut off from are elements of our ego, our old karma, our wounds and resistance that we can consciously give over to the sacred winds to release and empty for new life to be born. Remember this is a New Moon supreme in Leo which is ruled the Sun, rules the Heart and begins a new 19 year cycle.

Some key words to consider:

  • Release- separate from
  • Align
  • Empower
  • Rise
  • Shine
  • Courage
  • Heart consciousness
  • Humility
  • Embody

Many astrologers and elders speak of this total eclipse as a dance between the Sun and the Moon. One of my favorites Demetra George speaks of this phenomenon as the moon draping or throwing a veil over the sun to create privacy as this union or an insemination of a new aspect of life to be created.

What rich symbolism to imagine: we are creating a tent inside ourselves for creation- what do you wish to direct this extremely potent creative energy toward in your life? And with Venus in Cancer: are you prepared to foster and nurture it? Are you ready to allow yourself to receive the special wonder of self expression just like the sun when it returns to wholeness will you continue to eclipse your inner sun?

So lets now look at the bigger map we have been traveling and how great mystery is conspiring for our benefit going over some key dates to keep in mind:

As we discussed last month’s moon cycle on July 23rd in 0 Leo beginning a two month journey with our regal tour guide to activate our heart chakra and begin this important exploration.

August 7th was a partial South Nodal Full Moon eclipse in Aquarius demanding we call time on a part of our adapted self that is eclipsing our inner Sun and Heart.

August 12th, Mercury went retrograde in mutable earth sign Virgo which strives to assimilate information and bring the information that all the planets, many of which are retrograde, into form. Interestingly the moon cycle we are in now is called a Corn Moon. This reminds me of an indigenous saying that one must not just think about our ideals or visions regarding a better way in the world but one must grow corn or make it real to nourish others so the saying “can you grow corn” seems very relevant right now when the world, and certainly our country is on fire with division and in desperate need for grounded clear guidance. It is a service oriented energy will serve as a lightening rod or grounding agent for all of this fire.

August 21st is the New Moon at the end of Leo, 28th degree asking us what did we learn over the last month – total eclipse of the Sun and a north nodal which is an invitation to start a new 19 year cycle – to move into the new karmic classroom. While the event is 6 minutes long the effects, it can take months or years to play out in our lives. This is true for our country as well as ourselves.

August 25th Saturn which was retro in fire sign Sagittarius goes direct. This will give us more info as Saturn is the time keeper of our journey and Sagittarius our cosmic teacher and storyteller of the new myth we wish to breathe into form.

August 26th, Mercury and the Sun join at the midpoint of the retrograde cycle and more bridges are opening from the higher realms to our conscious awareness are accessible and available to upgrade the mind to hold the new potential strength and goals of a renewed heart. While Mercury is often challenging communication challenger, it’s a much needed ally for this intense initation.

September 5th is another juicy aha goose bump moment as Mercury goes direct on 28 Leo so it activates the eclipse point and that may be when the lights actually go on within our soul and some understanding of what and how to collaborate with how our divine heart wishes to been and heart will be illuminated.

September 6th we have the lunar spotlight of a full Moon to enhance the wisdom of the feminine, intuition and emotional intelligence in the water sign Pisces.

September 20th we come full cycle to next New Moon in Virgo!

Here are some basic considerations to optimize this cycle

As well as nurture you wise moon knowing and divine energy flowing:

-Create time to connect within, to meditate, draw, move and journal. Create that tented inner space to become symbolically pregnant with new possibility.

-Accentuate your lunar nature that was activated; remember that wisdom of the feminine that came alive in the dark – the moon guides will work with our innate intuitive creative raw emotional psychic powers so give them space to breathe and express!

Embrace and accept all shadow aspects, old hurts, memories, trauma or loss that may have surfaced with the stirrings of the recent lunar eclipse. It is time to empty the cup so we can fill it up.

Invite yourself to honestly and completely surrender to the question:

what will you let go of – what must be given to the fire – thrown into the caldron of completion?

We have resistance to so many things that all stem from self doubt and unworthiness. Do you have the courage to let do of what is eclipsing your Heart? This is the reset the New Moon eclipse in Leo is asking of us but with humility and LOVE. Remember, a surge of Heart Consciousness. The world and the country is at a time of revealing the very same themes, an old shadow and darkness to the very nature of our beginnings and we must not try to build on top of it or bury it once again but topple, break it apart and take the time to sit in the discomfort until it becomes a quiet place of honesty, honoring, healing and deep understanding.

My beloved elder Grandmother Flordemayo offers us these words for this auspicious time, “August 21st is a day in which we let go of all the old and start a new. Anything you have been holding onto that has caused you conflict – release it. Lets all pray together, to release all the indifference around the world. I love you – Flordemayo.

Mayan prayer-

Awaken, awaken the dawn is here

Not one or another shall be left behind

We shall walk together like the fingers of the hand.”

May it be so~

“Those who watch over us in sunlight, those who watch over us in moonlight, those who watch over us in starlight, we honor you.”

Navaho saying in reverence for the celestial bodies.

With love, sisterhood and lots of cosmic magic,



Preparing for the Classroom of 2017

Mar 2nd, 2017 Posted in General, Moon Goddess Journeys, The Tribal Beat, Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Dearest Tribe:

As 2016 takes its last breaths, we can honestly say that this year has left its mark on everyone. Every year has a unique energy and vibration to it and turns out 2016 translates into a universal nine which equates completion. While the page on the calendar may feel very predictable, on 1/1/2017 we will be entering a year of the universal one so the classroom we walk into will hold assignments aligned with new beginnings.

The last quarter of this year was so challenging and tense, and for many reactivating past trauma, it’s difficult to remember all that occurred throughout the entire year. To assimilate the deeper meaning of the experiences, it can be useful to review this walk around the Sun in its fullness. The timing of this Mercury retrograde cycle helps us with this assignment, as does its companion, the tiny but mighty planet of Pluto which is traveling along side Mercury to make sure all of the unspoken or hidden undigested aspects of this year be brought to the surface so nothing is taken with us into 2017 without our consent. As we learn over and over again, we cannot control what occurs in much of life but we can take control over how we react and dance with it.

Like many of you, I woke up on 11/9/16 afraid to put my feet on the floor only to find out that the ground had moved – it felt like a natural disaster had happened and the world would never be the same. What helps me the most and I suspect some of you, was knowing that my family, my sisterhood, those I looked to reflect my reality and share my primal confusion, was right where I left them – next to me. Together we have processed the shock, the fear and the outrage. As I look to the Sun and Moon as gatekeepers of each day, they never disappoint – with each Sun comes a mini new beginning and with this simple Earth honoring wisdom, I take heart and find hope. If any part of me was asleep, I am awake now.

This New Moon on 12/29/16 offers a perfect moment to release that which your true self needs to separate from – empty out the pockets and the drawers within the psyche and the heart – so we can step into this completely new nine year cycle open to the curiosity of possibility rather than a continuation of a new version of the same lessons. Engage in any rituals that offer self reflection minus judgment or doubt and collaborate with the energies of true source love and wisdom to help you detach, release, dissolve and forgive anything that obstructs the vision of this new emerging life-scape. Allow yourself to invite one intention to reveal itself for the New Year so you can be open to what you discover as a co-creator rather than put too many demands to have it all figured out. This year our vision boards might be more powerful if they held one phrase – show up and trust your knowing. Once we get realigned and vibe with our soul GPS, we will guide ourselves in the direction that will be in greatest alignment with our higher truth.

When trying to sort out some navigational tools for this very uncertain time the political climate has placed us in, I remembered a story told that passes around the circle fires as it always offers a powerful message:

Long ago, a village in need of rain invited a powerful medicine woman to invoke the thunder and lightning spirits and make it rain. When she arrived she asked for a hut to sit in. Days went by and nothing happened, it remained dry as a bone and then suddenly she emerged. As she came out of the hut, the sky turned dark and the rain came down with intensity. The village chief was thrilled and asked the woman what she did. She simply replied, “nothing, the village was so out of balance that I became out of balance and so I had to meditate. As I got into balance, the village came back into balance and the rain came.”

(Photo courtesy of Sarah Drew.)

What ever created the imbalances of our world, and there are many over many years, we are now all out of balance. The only way we can be of service to this collective moment is not to continue to stay in shock and confusion but rather to restore balance within. Just like the medicine woman, it is through that individual recovery of harmony and rhythm, we can approach life with authentic loving strength and begin to be influencers and change makers within our communities dedicated to that which enhances a renewal of hope and enrichment of life.

As this new energy is upon us, the programming at Everyday Medicine Woman will be reflecting this inspired call to action via new seminars and completion of that which has grown to its fullest form. Our beloved Thirteen Moons will be starting its Thirteenth Year so while 2017 offers a new cycle it holds the span of another one that is coming to completion in its current form. We consider you a vital part of our community just by opening our emails and treasure your unique expression of self-evolution as a powerful reminder that in sharing our journey with one another we are all stronger together.

Deepest heartfelt wishes for love, abundance and joy as we walk on this bridge to 2017 together,


Written by: Susan Lipshutz, LCSW, Founder

Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website

Into The Storm

Jun 24th, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Into the Storm: Recovering the Soul After Rape

One of the most compelling reasons I wanted to share the individual stories of the women who journeyed through the Thireen Moons process was to illustrate the power of healing in community. During the course of the collective journey of soul remembrance, many women not only remember experiences that help them to connect of the dots of their childhood story, they also find that weaving into the grace and power of the divine feminine realms offers access to transforming painful trauma in a deeply personal and profound way. This beautifully raw and tender sharing from a brave Thirteen Moons sister is one such example. I am honored to hold space for the transformational healing and reconciliation  that is part of our terrain together.

Please take heed to the gentle warning at the beginning of this blog piece so you are taking care of yourself in accessing if this material may be too triggering for your overall well-being.

~ Susan Lipshutz, LCSW, Founder

From a Thirteen Moons Sister

Warning: This article contains content relating to sexual assault and date rape. If you’re healing a trauma of your own or are sensitive, use your best judgement to whether this will be healing or not for you. I whole-heartedly wish you the best in your healing.


It was the Fourth of July in Chicago and it had finally started to feel like the vibrant summer we midwesterners have been starving for. My giant gold earrings got caught in my curly hair and I showed off a brand new red sundress which was so different from practical clothes I usually wore. Armed with my cleverly concealed bottles of wine and whiskey, I was ready for a night at the beach to watch the fireworks and partake in drunk revelry with friends. Mostly, I was hoping that some fireworks would spark between him and me.

When we got together, he offered me shots of vodka and I gave in. I usually overlooked that particular liquor, but I reasoned that this evening was going to be different. I wasn’t my usual lonely self that night, and I didn’t stop him when he poured more shots than my intuition warned me was wise.

I don’t know what I expected from him at the beach, but I wasn’t expecting the sour company he would become. As the night went on, he showed his disinterest in everything around him: the fireworks, the beach… me. I was hit so hard with the ever familiar pain of rejection that I downed my whiskey flask just to numb out my self hatred as I tried to ignore the tears welling up in my eyes. This night was going nowhere so it was better to just end it now.

The local businesses were all closed so I let him into my apartment to use the bathroom before telling him how to get back to the train.

Only he didn’t leave.

My body began to reject the vast amounts of alcohol I had consumed, and he took that as his cue to stay. I told him to go but he said he couldn’t leave me in that state. No, it’s fine, really. I live alone, I’m used to this. You should go. Still he didn’t.

As the alcohol came up, so did every insecurity I was trying desperately to hide from myself: the feelings of being unattractive and having nothing to contribute to another person’s life; how ugly I believed myself to be; how I could never open myself up to anyone because they would use my vulnerabilities to hurt me.

Then he kissed me. His fingers pull up the hem of my red dress and I pushed his hands away. Despite my protests—the No’s, the You’re only doing this because I’m drunk, and the Really, you should leave—I couldn’t convince him I would be okay on my own. Still sick, he convinced me to lie down in bed. Not yet in control of my mind and body, he climbed in with me.


A nagging feeling woke with me the next morning. Did that… Did that just happen?

My heart stopped as the answer hit me like a semi truck. He had raped me. Despite my education in feminism and survivor’s rights, I was completely unprepared for the emotional meltdown and identity crisis that would be my constant companion for the months ahead.

I was even less prepared for the tremendous spiritual transformation about to take place in my life.

The thrusts he forced on me were a sledgehammer breaking down everything I thought I knew about myself. He held a mirror up in front of me that was so close, so real, and so urgent that no truth could hide. Never before have I seen myself with such clarity. Everything I hated about myself was reflected back at me: the beliefs about my unworthiness, the past I tried to forget, and the ways in which I kept myself from living life passionately and with love. I had to face the self I thought I wanted to be but that had never made me happy. I had never felt so broken in my life.

My utter vulnerability to his attack made me see how I was being controlled by the very loud and insistent Good Girl within me. She believed that if we made the right decisions and did as we were told, we would build an untouchably perfect life and would be protected. Yet this carefully planned, pruned, and executed life didn’t protect me that night.

I kept myself from living my highest truth all for a lie.

I quickly began unraveling. The next month and a half became a whirlwind of therapy appointments, medical tests, skipped meals, mental breakdowns, identity crises, meditative visions, energy healings, spiritual counseling, impulse book purchases, impromptu travel, past due bills, and so-called “bad” decisions with amazing results.

Without even realizing, all of these paths held a single thread. They have connected me to a force that has been slowly creeping up on me over years. They echoed a voice in me has always been a little seedling I’d been too scared to let grow or even acknowledge existed. I had caught glimpses of this power slithering into the light from the shadows where it was repressed by me and the culture. In the wreckage of my heart and body, it blossomed within me—the undeniable presence of the Goddess. I found the part of my soul that I had been desperately seeking my entire life.

The Goddess that came to me is the wild, passionate, sultry, embodied Goddess feared out of existence during aeons of patriarchal rule. She came to me in meditations, visions, sensations in my body, through the voice of my intuition, and my own passion. She spoke to me in symbols and synchronicities, leading me to books and teachers who would give me the counsel I needed. She taught me to embrace my emotions, every one of them, and trust what makes me passionate. She told me and how to live from my truest self and speak honestly, regardless of what others think. I slowly began to love my body for the first time, as it is Her muse and messenger, and every act of love starts there. She taught me to embrace endings and let go. Most importantly, after everything I had been through, she is teaching me how to love deeply. During a time I could barely find a piece of myself to hold on to, She found me. Lead by Her voice, She offered me a self I would never have recognized before. In Her arms I began to find the woman I had always meant to be.

Two New Moons after the Fourth of July, I was ready to reclaim my freedom and pledge allegiance to a piece of my own forgotten soul. With Her guidance, I donned the red sundress once more, ready to leave my apartment. The lightning cracked and it nearly drove me back inside, but I remembered that fear no longer lead me. My wild side craved and needed to meet the Lady at the lake in the rain, and neither of us could have it either way. I had torn apart a dozen roses with the intention of breaking down the Good Girl that kept me enslaved to rules and not my heart. I carried these in a mason jar with me, an urn for the girl I was leaving behind for the woman I was to become.

I walked back to the beach and the voice deep inside urged me further down the pier to where I could see and speak with my Goddess more freely. Just at the pier’s curve, I stood, watching the lightning hit the horizon in Her name.

Lady, thank You. Thank You for coming to get me. As horrible as it was to have to be
broken like that, You came for me, spoke to me, embraced me, and encircled me with Your love. You awakened me to Your grace. I am a new woman now. I know my heart deeper than I’ve ever known her before, and will continue to reach out to her and seek her wisdom and advice. I’ve broken down the fears that keep me from listening to her and to You. I have spoken, sang, and even danced my truth, where I would have stayed silent in fear before. I am loving my body and trusting it more, not being afraid to give it what it needs. It’s all for Your love that I am becoming who I am.

The rain continued to pour down and the lightning came to strike and I knew the time had come to finally say goodbye. My urn of flower petals in my hand “Thank you. I know why you had to be silent. I know why you had to give up everything you did to get us here, where we are today. I will miss the stability and sense of comfort that you brought me, but I will not miss how you silenced me and neglected our passions. Good bye, old friend.” I unscrewed the lid to the jar and watched the petals–my ashes–fly out into the vast lake on the Lady’s howling breath.

Lady, it is done. I am yours. We are one.

The empty jar now back in my hand, I walked off the pier and back home. At the last moment, I remembered to blow a kiss out to the lake. The little red dress, the one I wore when She first called me to Her, clung to me, merging into my skin. Yes, we are one now.

Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website

Daughter of Daughters

May 3rd, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Daughter of Daughters, A Poem From a Thirteen Moons Sister

By: Cynthia Smith

Copy of IMG_3990-2

I am a daughter of daughters
strong are our connections
through wombs of dark waters
nurtured by their affections

I am a daughter of daughters
generations after generations
survived attacks and slaughters
in my veins are their vibrations

I am a daughter of a daughter
it is a complicated affair
much like oil and water
not mixing and not aware

I am a daughter of a daughter
searching for the right words
to create serene soothing water
like nectar for hummingbirds.

My daughter of a daughter, I grieve
I always thought her in route
but I would never ever believe
that time for her would run out

My daughter of a daughter, I dream
in the night realm she flies to me
oh how we make a perfect team
no where else I’d rather be

~ Cynthia 

Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website



Apr 5th, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Diana, A Poem From a Thirteen Moons Sister

Diana, Goddess of the Moon

Diana, Goddess of the Moon

They told me empowerment

Were in steps you could find

Here is a list, they whispered, 

just follow

just follow

Body ragged from earthquakes

And soul starving from plague

Given crystal vials of poisons

I swallowed

I swallowed

Why must my heart hurt?

Why must my feet ache?

I’m trying

I’m trying

To Earth and Moon I swear

I’m trying


& pleading

for some way out of my pain

Hunger lead me chasing

every truth I could find

except my own

except my own

Nearly dead from the fight

against this enemy unknown

At the end of my rope

She came

She came

Diana, Goddess of the Moon

Diana, Goddess of the Moon

She showed me my heart

my hands

and my face

She showed me a path

of a much different fate

“Put down your old weapons

and lay down your old fight

don’t become your own enemy

seek your own might

Take my bow

and my arrows, too

Pierce only what binds

Kill only what breaks you

“Take my bow

and my arrows, too

in only the fight

that brings you closer to you”

~ Anonymous 


Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website


Am I more interested in being real than being seen?

Mar 22nd, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Am I More Interested in Being Real than Being Seen?

As we continue our sequential  journey to recover and reclaim elements of our essential selves through the Thirteen Moons process, the first several sessions take us into deep emotionally textured memory filled terrain. These sessions focus into the earlier parts of our lives  with an emphasis of locating the the source of our resources, gifts and sacred treasures- not our deficits, limitations or fears. When reunited with our innate enthusiasm for life, we awaken connection, rhythm and flow that serves as the conduit for genuine fulfillment of not only needs but also desires. This tender alumni story  invites us into an intimate soul retrieval with her lost little girl within, reminding us that it is not the magical child who is lost but our ability and permission to believe we our innately magical beings that was in need of remembrance.

~ Susan Lipshutz, LCSW, Founder

From a Thirteen Moons Sister

The authenticity of young children can be disarming. As I raise my 5 and 6 year old children, I am frequently in awe of their sheer presence. They answer questions unequivocally that many adults can’t. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” ” A unicorn doctor, of course. To help sick unicorns.” They are not afraid to be vulnerable. When someone hurts their feelings on the playground, they say it, simply: “she hurt my feelings.” There’s no projection, no passive aggression. Just the raw feeling itself. Their artwork sings with flow and freedom. They have not yet learned to mask their creativity, for fear that their art won’t be “good” or “right.”

I marvel at these qualities in my children because they have felt so lost to me for so long. The idea of leading a life that felt authentic, true, real? Honestly, I wouldn’t even know where to start. I think about the things that gave me so much pleasure when I was a precocious kindergartener. I loved to read, loved libraries, told anyone who would listen that I wanted to be a librarian when I grew up. I would drive my father crazy by taking stacks of his books at home and stamping them and writing on the first page to “check them out” to my stuffed animals.

Suffice it to say that I did not grow up to be a librarian. But I still think about it all the time. When precisely did I resign this dream? When did I become so fearful to express my guttural, second chakra desire for that which my mind refused? As a child, I felt so invisible — that no one in my life was able to see the true me. But now as a grown adult, I finally ask myself: Am I more interested in being real than being seen?

In the second installment of Thirteen Moons, we did a guided journey that welcomed back this inner child piece of me that had, for one reason or another, departed. During the journey, I visualized riding on a great vessel through the ocean. I arrive on an island where there is one house. The house is the kind you would find in Key West — large shuttered windows flung open, a gentle ocean breeze lingering through, the sun shining above. I walk into the house, and there are ceiling-high bookshelves filled with books on every wall. Great big, soft armchairs and reading lamps are in the middle of the room. A grand, antique writing desk sits off to the side. There is a elder woman in the adjacent kitchen. Without ever having met her, I know she is my Great-Grandmother, Fanny. She’s wiping the counter, as if she’s just finished making something. She gives me a knowing smile, as if to say “I knew you were coming.” I turn back to the great room, and there she is: it’s me, at about 8 years old. She sees me, and without hesitation leaps into my arms. She’s so happy. I ask her if she wants to come with me. (Frankly, I am a bit hesitant. This house is perfect and warm; why would she want to go back to snowy Chicago with me?) But she already has a bag packed and waiting, complete with my long-lost stuffed kitty, Whisper. She’s been waiting for me. She had a feeling I was coming soon. She can’t wait to meet my children. “Are we leaving now?”

It’s an extraordinary feeling, hard to put into words, of feeling like you have welcomed back a piece of your truest self, of what many would characterize as a soul retrieval. I haven’t gone back to school for librarianship just yet, and maybe that ship has forever sailed for me. But to be reunited with that authentic little girl? Perhaps she and I are now ready for both the seen and the unseen.

~ Anonymous 


Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website


Finding Space for Many Mothers

Feb 13th, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Finding Space for Many Mothers

While creating a new relationship with our mothers may or may not be possible, by shifting our perspective and awaking to the essence of maternal energy we area seeking – her presence becomes accessible not only around us but also within as beautifully described in this medicine story by out alumni sister.

~ Susan Lipshutz, LCSW, Founder

From a Thirteen Moons Sister

image1The notion of having two fathers is not, in many ways, a novel idea. In Judeo-Christian tradition, there are two fathers: one’s biological father and the other, spiritual father. And whether or not the archetype of the spiritual father is an old man with a white beard or an amorphous energy that hangs out with the son and the holy spirit, chances are that there is at least some element of male gendering associated with this paradigm of a spiritual caretaker.  Particularly when our human experience with our biological father feels unfulfilled in some way, this concept of spiritual father can be securing and comforting.

But what about our spiritual mother? Some traditions are more willing to name the concept of a spiritual maternal figure. Mother Earth. The Goddess. Pachamama. The Virgin Mother.  And for me, it was very much a novel idea to open my mind and heart to the notion of a female spiritual guide. As the daughter of an emotionally unavailable biological mother, I felt removed and unsettled by the concept of the divine feminine. I felt the opposite of comfort – namely, doubt and fear.

At the February installment of Thirteen Moons, “Becoming a Daughter of Mother Earth,” I acknowledged this fear and doubt. How could there possibly be room for the divine feminine in my heart when my human experience of the maternal feminine took up such a large, shadowed place? I explored some tender areas: Who were my nurturers growing up? How did my mother nurture? Was I ever a mother to my own mother? Did my mother love herself? When have I felt true connection to Mother Earth?  I surprised myself with how easy these questions were to answer, but moved by my heart’s response. It made more sense to understand when and why these feelings of doubt and fear emerged, and why I’ve held on to them for so long.

The best part was realizing that I could let some of these feelings go. In our Thirteen Moons journey, I visualized my mother at 23 years old, the age at which I was born. During that journey I was able to take my mother’s hand, and give her back to her own mother, my grandmother – the intended and rightful caretaker of my mother’s pain and chaos. This lifting of shadowed, metaphysical weight felt so palpable. With it came a feeling of spaciousness and willingness to open my heart to the love of a second mother, of the divine feminine – something that I had never truly realized I was searching for, and that has now become an intrinsic part of what it means for me to be a mother to my own children.

~ Vanessa 


Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website


Welcome to Thirteen Moons 2016

Jan 18th, 2016 Posted in Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

Thirteen Moons

Celebrating Our Stories

We are thrilled to announce that as we launch our twelfth year of Thirteen Moons we are adding a new feature to the Everyday Medicine Woman blog. We will be dedicating monthly posts to bring forward the voice of our Thirteen Moons sisterhood so that we may share and witness this glorious transformational journey in a bigger and more collective way.

By honoring our stories we set our past free and began to get a glimpse of the new era this freedom could invite while simultaneously reconnecting with a deep ancestral lineage and collective global oneness.

I have been massively moved and seriously touched by witnessing each woman’s authentic wonder at her own ability to conjure big magic and life changing shifts as she begins to access a direct relationship with the unseen world. Each story connects the bigger understanding that liberates a great deal of the self­-limiting or hurtful episodes of our lives as we are getting the greater viewpoint that only a woman taking agency over her life could have about her experiences.

The Thirteen Moons Blog will be lovingly curated by two alumni sisters, Renuka and Vanessa, who will be weaving stories of alumni and new sisters alike so that each session in the series can be enhanced by the personal expression of our walk on the sacred path of remembrance together as we become keepers of our stories and that of our ancestors.

~ Susan Lipshutz, LCSW, Founder

From a Thirteen Moons Sister

Thirteen Moons Welcome


Hello new sister. Welcome to a place where your story matters. This is a place where you are believed and we want to see you thrive. For so many years, generations of women were left to navigate an unfriendly terrain without the counsel of other women who have taken the path before or are on it now. The female guides we have been given have understood less about empowerment and authenticity than we know today and we often feel that next steps are shrouded in fear and misunderstanding. Our hearts, as women, wish to sing, but don’t yet know how. It’s not your fault. It’s not their fault. But it doesn’t have to be your future.

The voice of your heart is the probably very voice that found its way to the circle. That series of random incidences that lead you to that workshop, flyer, or woman who told you about this group? I would bet anything that this was your heart calling out to be heard. Some have heard about us and know they want to join us for the whole year. Some are on the right path but are only called to a session or two. Some have simply heard us for no reason than to know that they are not alone on their journey. All paths are sacred, but it was not an accident that you’re reading this now.

So, new sister, whether you have found us intentionally or by accident, you are welcome here. You are welcome to meet your deepest self and find where you need to change to let yourself grow. You are welcome to be empowered beyond your dreams. You are welcome to break down in complete safety and certainty that we will not judge you, we will not think you are crazy, and that you will get out to meet your truer, brighter self because of it. No woman is alone in this struggle, and never should you feel unwelcome because of it.

If your path wishes to merge with ours, I will say this to you: I hope you are ready to see your life in a new light. I hope you are ready to explore the world with wonder and hope again. I hope you are ready to confront your shadow and shine brighter because of it. I hope you’re ready to truly be seen as the magnificent creature you are. I hope you’re ready to be the majestic woman you heart knows that you are, no matter what the world has said about you before. We hope you find that love in yourself that you’re craving deeply.

Whether we know each other today, down the road, or never in the physical realm—may you find your place in the sisterhood and know we want you to truly shine like the wonderful woman you are in your heart.

~ Renuka 


Feeling inspired to share your own Thirteen Moons story, art, poetry, etc.? Click here for our guidelines.

For more information about Thirteen Moons, our monthly seminar series honoring the spiritual life cycle of a woman, please visit our website


Astrology: The 2013 Winter Solstice

Dec 21st, 2013 Posted in Astrology Aspects, General | No Comments »

We are in a very beautiful arc of the winter holy days from the December 17th Full Moon to the January 1st New Moon in 2014. The Winter Solstice on December 21st, 2013 brings us to a profound annual moment, a time when we realize the need for sunlight in our lives amid the backdrop of enhanced darkness. All cultural holidays include some sort of candle lighting, stories of miracles and celebration of birth and collective family.

This Winter Solstice packs a much stronger auspicious punch as Venus goes retrograde on the same day until January 31, 2014. Venus is often associated with an Aphrodite kind of sensual, romantic vibe. She is really a powerful goddess that holds our commitment to elegance, kindness, equality, beauty, balance and values. Some astrologers speak of this retrograde cycle as a time when Venus takes her rose colored glasses off and gets to the heart of the matter.

Some may remember the rare and beautiful Venus retrograde cycle in early June, 2012 when she transited the Sun in the sign Gemini – the oracle. This time, she is doing her 40-day boot camp training in Capricorn. So her attention will be on what is in and out of balance in our relationships, core values, and ability to manifest our visions and see if they are in harmony with our soul. The first half of this period 12/21- 1/11 will be more of a revelation period and the last half will be a time to draw the new map for enhanced personal well being, as well as a time to find a more balanced inner and outer life.

I recommend taking this Venus retrograde very seriously and collaborating with this beautiful cosmic guide by starting a 40-day daily practice where you identify an aspect that seems out of balance or in need of a Venusian tune up and work with it through out this period. See what and who she brings into your life (people from the past often appear) and pay attention to dreams and visions. You can write, draw, work with divination tools, such as the tarot or runes. Allow for this process to be supported with consciousness and wonder.

12/21/2013 – Winter Solstice, Venus retrogrades in earth-sign Capricorn

1/1/2014 – New Moon in cardinal earth sign Capricorn

1/15/2014 – Full Moon in watery, maternal Cancer

1/30/2014 – New Moon in Aquarius, fixed air sign

1/31/2014 – Venus goes direct

2013: The Year of Learning to See in the Dark

Dec 20th, 2013 Posted in General, The Tribal Beat, Thirteen Moons | No Comments »

winding_roadWhen I sat down to write this last newsletter of the year, I had to face that I had only written two others this entire year. I had written the others psychically but those didn’t make it this far to reach the actual paper. I had a year of losing and finding myself; threading in and out of my practical left brain while being pulled into the cosmic void of mystery. Some of this was a means of coping, some a result of my progressed astrology chart and a good deal of it was the result of the bigger impact of being launched out of the cosmic cannon of 2012.

Moving into the Golden Era or Fifth Sun was not all rainbows and gardens but more of a perpetual state similar to the anti-climactic feel after achieving a long awaited and very important event, like graduating school or getting married. No matter how unsettling the energies of 2012 were, those of us spirit seekers were in it together. Even the skeptics and doomsday folks, everyone was curious and in conversation about what might happen as we approached and arrived at the end of the Mayan Calendar on 12/21/2012. There were gatherings, meditations, celebrations and conferences throughout the year and on that auspicious day. Most of us would agree that last year offered much intense change, including shifts and initiations in subtle and monumental ways.

Yet what was less talked about was the next phase, which I believe was the far more difficult one: 2013. The year of the water snake took us for a ride into the hidden facets of our human side. Like a teacher that believed in us so fiercely that they were going to push us to the limit, 2013 revealed what blind spots we hold as a world and as individuals that block lasting change. By forcing us to face our individual shadows, wounds, fears and truths, we were required to re-dedicate ourselves to our greater spiritual understandings and clean up the internal conflict that was mirrored by or reflected back from the fractured world state of affairs. The motivational phrase, “be the change you wish to see in the world,” pushed us to change what is wounded in the world in ourselves – our relationships, our work, our health – all aspects of our lives were under the microscope for intuitive diagnosis and psychic surgery.

The planetary alchemists all converged to support this deep cleansing of our internal and inherited toxins by putting us on a big Pluto, Saturn, Scorpio detox and it did the trick. Then Uranus sent Aries-influenced lightening bolts and we all began to feel the combination of change waves from the inner and outer layers. By mid 2013, almost everyone I knew had serious or sudden shifts, losses, disruptions or changes happening. The year of Saturn in Scorpio was putting on the black light 3-D glasses and moving through all our favorite hiding places. This was necessary to support of our constant prayers that we be filled with love in our hearts, peace in our minds and have bodies emanating light.

While thinking about a theme for this end-of-year summary, the phrase that really came to me was Sera Beak’s saying: “#truth bomb”. The most liberating, compassionate action I could engage in during this year and what I really worked on with my clients was having the courage to speak and own our truthful experiences in a non-judgmental way. I feel this why Brené Brown has such a universal appeal. She has the courage to be authentic and dare bravely. She sets all of us free to make mistakes, heal, release and connect so we can find and be the truth of who we really are. As the year progressed, I saw so many heavy-hearted folks who felt lost and alone or terrified that the intuitive feelings surfacing from their core would mean the life they had could be at risk. This was the year of the rise of the feminine divine, the staff of power shifting from masculine to feminine, yet we all felt somewhat powerless.

The turning point of this year came for me when I cleared my schedule and went to a conference on sacred feminine leadership in October that as hosted by mega-goddess Chantal Pierrat and her kick butt team at Emerging Women Live. I was shaken to my core and jolted back to life by the likes of Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Nancy Levin, Tami Simon, Christine Kane, Sera Beak and our contemporary Kali Ma: Eve Ensler. They all shared their deep truths about marriage, bodies and careers that had crumbled and had to be taken down by the cosmic shaman Pluto so that the authentic emergence of the real soul of the goddess and calling could happen. I knew at that moment that everything I had gone through was necessary, even the profoundly painful stripping down of my heart walls, in order for me to realize a lineage blind spot that had caused my soul GPS to malfunction, causing me to drive in circles.

The biggest reason I couldn’t find a writing voice this year was my own truth bomb: I was living through an 18-month period of having my 18-year marriage end in a way that was unimaginable to me. I was oscillating between states of frozen fear and frantic movement but was simultaneously offered the most beautiful moments of complete grace, profound demonstrations of kindness, love, tenderness and miracles by family, friends, my village of healers and new angels in my life. I often found myself breathless from the beauty. I now feel more vulnerable and accessible and am approaching a new understanding of fearlessness.

When I think about this year, I recall this Rumi quote:

“It is your road and yours alone. Others may walk it with you,

But no one can walk it for you.”

My world cracked open about 19 months ago when Venus went retrograde in Gemini. I faced hosting our lakefront Venus transit celebration while in shock as my own personal Venus transit was just under way. Now, I write this as a Full Moon in Gemini shines her light on me and I prepare to close this era of my life with Venus once again retrograding on the Solstice in my sun sign Capricorn. It’s with a sense of excitement that I begin a new era, holding my hand on the karmic wheel of fortune once again.

I realize that my description of this year may sound grim and dark but every journey, rightly seen, has its beauty and purpose. I’ve had many book ideas float in and out of my consciousness for two decades but it just came to me that it is this journey of my Venus return that I need to share. So I think that 2014, the year of the green wood horse, will be delivering more correspondence from me.

This winter solstice (December 21st, 2013), the day Venus goes retrograde, I invite you to take pen to paper and ask yourself to reflect on the year:   

~What was your truth bomb?

~Have you discovered a blind spot that was leaking your power, happiness or ability to manifest what you deeply wish for yourself?

~How did this revelation/truth bomb activate the real healing and life changes you couldn’t get to on your own?

~Do you have the courage to love yourself enough to take ownership of your own journey without knowing the outcome?

We have one more month of the water snake, so let’s shed the last layer of any self sabotage and bring our entire energy to the passionate cause of living the truth of who we are and loving it!

“There are no guarantees. From the viewpoint of fear none are enough. From the viewpoint of love none are necessary.”

– Emmanuel with Pat Rodegast

May we walk through the doorway of 2014 with a renewed sense of optimism, ease and wonder about what liberation from personal suffering can bring.