The Womb Cocoon.
Back in the time of our long forgotten ancestors, when we lived in tight knit communities, women were seen as sacred creatures. We were creatures that could usher in life and bleed without dying. Our connection to our emotions was revered by men, even the chiefs of our tribes would seek us out for advice during our cycle. Our cycle was a time where we would sit together in ceremony, bleed into the earth, and connect with our divinity and each other.
We typically bled for one night only, on the dark moon. This was the time we were most connected with the Underworld thus our magic. Spells would be cast, songs would be sung, and we would deeply rest and retreat from the world around us. It was a time for deep release.
We have since lost this practice and this mentality. We no longer use the term "moon cycle" but "period" and we see it as the least desirable week of the month, wishing it away with our discomforts and deep cravings for sweets. Most men are incredibly uncomfortable around a bleeding woman, some steer clear, while some of the good ones will bring us chocolate and a cozy blanket.
I don't know about you, but the Old Ways sound a lot more desirable to me then the new ones. The biggest issue I've faced around my cycle is that the world expects me to keep going, while my body is begging me to stop. To retreat. To relax. To rest.
As with all shadows, I have learned to befriend the beast rather then banish it (it always comes back). I give the beast what it wants, and realize it isn't asking for anything other then space and compassion. And that it's actually not a beast at all. Just a lost, ignored part of myself that is really angry because it's been silenced and ignored.
Reconnecting to the Old Ways in the modern time is not as tricky as it sounds. No, you don't need a big red tent where you gather all the women in your circle. You probably don't bleed only for one night on the Dark Moon, either. However, when you reattune yourself to your body's natural rhythm, you will notice your cycle favors a certain moon cycle. Whether you always bleed near a Full or Dark moon, waxing or waning cycle, this all has significance in your body's natural cycle.
Getting to know this part of yourself opens up all that lives in your womb space. Your intuition, creativity, your ability to usher in new life through ideas and manifestation, and more.
Your womb is located in the space of your Sacral Chakra, and to reattune to your natural cycles and activate the wisdom of your womb, is to bring healing to your Sacral Chakra. The center of pleasure, pain, emotion, and primal magic.
So, how do we reconnect to the Old Ways?
My answer is creating a Womb Cocoon.
The first 2 days of your cycle are the most sacred. They are when your intuition is on high, your energy is buzzing, you are the most physically tired, and you are bleeding the heaviest. This is the time you need the most rest. Whether that means laying in your bed eating a pizza and watching Netflix (no judgment here) or practicing deeply restorative Yin yoga, all practices are welcome.
One of my non-negotiables during my womb cocoon is a digital detox. If this sounds too extreme for you, a social media detox is a great way to start.
It is important to be aware of what you are consuming, on all fronts, during this time when you are the most spiritually open and vulnerable. You want to keep the vibe as high as possible.
Smudge your space. I like to smudge my space to open my womb cocoon to banish all stagnant or negative energy in my home so my space can be a clear vessel for me to be a clear channel for the divine. This is the time I receive the deepest wisdom for my life. My best ideas and deepest healing are downloaded during this time. Use Mugwort to connect to the energy of the Moon. If smudging is not in your practice, my Forcefield Candle (linked below) is a great substitute for a traditional smoke smudge, made with essential oils of Sage, Palo Santo, Cedar, Pine & a drop of Rose.
Take a Ritual Bath. Creatrix (linked below) was created for this sacred time of the month. Something beautiful happens to the soul when the body is bathed in flowers. The flower essence blend is supportive to a peaceful mindset and deep feminine creative force. Epsom Salt is a natural source of magnesium which fights inflammation and relaxes the entire body. This is a lovely practice if you suffer from cramps or deep fatigue.
Give yourself space to feel your emotions. Let yourself cry, rage, yell, dance, practice deep breathing, whatever you need to do. The divine feminine is a wild, primal, raw women. She feels emotions deep as the darkest corners of the ocean. During this time of shedding what is no longer serving her through her blood, deep emotions come up, and are literally begging to be released. So let yourself release them.
Nourish your body. While pizza and cupcakes can be what the body craves during this time, what you are really craving is comfort, sweetness, and nourishment. I promise, the Buddha bowl will hit the spot just the same. Focus on sources of calcium, magnesium, and iron. A grain bowl with protein and vegetables is the best form of nourishment you can give yourself that covers all the bases.
*A note for carnivores: this time of the month, it is natural to crave red meat. The loss of blood requires more iron to be taken in. Grass fed beef is a great way to increase iron.
**A note for herbivores: Pumpkin seeds, tofu, and healthy fats like avocado are great ways to give your body the nourishment it needs during this time.
Have a Cacao Ceremony. Cacao has deep connections to the Heart & Sacral Chakras. Cacao is my favorite medicine, because it is chocolate! During our moon cycles, even women who dislike chocolate crave chocolate. It is deeply opening, soothing, and helps us to let go of resistance, easing into the vibration of love and the wisdom of our bodies. I love to light some incense, put on a playlist, and mindfully sip my cacao.
Try my Spicy Rose Cacao Recipe:
13 discs Ceremonial Cacao
1c Oat Mylk (or steeped Grateful Heart Tea, linked below. Or a mixture of both!)
1/2 tsp Rose Powder
1/4 tsp shredded ginger
A Pinch of cayenne
Take a walk in nature. Connecting with the earth helps us to connect to our own inner wisdom and Mother Earth. Added bonus if you visit a natural body of water. Our blood and womb are connected to the element of water, so being near a natural source of water helps to connect us to the Mother even deeper.
Rest. If all you can do is lay in bed and drink tea, that is okay, too! Bring your journal, and brain dump all that comes out. Sleep. Listen to a guided meditation. Give your body what she needs.
The point of a Womb Cocoon is to listen to your body. To give her what she needs. The more space, mindfulness and silence we give ourselves, the deeper our capacity is to heal. By showing ourselves devotion through practice, we are telling our bodies that it is okay to relax, okay to let go of what we are so tightly hanging on to, and okay to feel. To reattune to our cycle is to reattune to our divine feminine nature.
Our Divine Feminine is not a prim and proper lady at High Court, she is a Wild Woman. All we have to do is let her out of her cage every so often, or she will let herself out. And it is much more pleasant if we use the keys we hold around our necks. As often as possible.