all images and stories are the property of Catherine Beerda-Basso and are not to be used without given permission...thank you

Sunday, 15 January 2012

It is time...

It is time to begin....
to begin this New Year here, in this space.
Even as I sit here, about to step into this proclamation my heart beats faster, my blood courses through my veins, and my breathe grows shallow.

So I take a deep breathe
and say a prayer...

This is the word I have been given for this year...
2012 will be a year of Vulnerability for me.
Even as I type that I can feel my rib cage opening up...
emotions churn 
fluttering about
it is painful

I started this year by cleaning my home...
And I don't mean just a little purging here and there
I mean the deep "fire it out" kind of cleaning.
(FREE STUFF...boy not included)

Truck loads of stuff brought to new places....recycling, thrift shop, the dump...yes truck loads.
It has been a time of making space, letting go, moving on.
I am a sentimental person, items hold meaning. And there was a time in my life when that was what I felt I needed to keep me grounded, to remind me of Truth because I was not strong enough, confident enough, educated-by-life enough to know what I already had inside of me.
It was the time when The Great Darkness ruled my life. I felt empty inside, that I was not enough, and I needed these "things" as reminders of love, support, validity, better times and happy moments around me. They kept me grounded, they kept me above water, they kept me moving.
But over the last 12 years of my life, there has been great shifts and The Great Darkness no longer rules still comes and goes, of course, because that is the balance of life. But it no longer rules.
and these memories,
these reminders are no longer needed
so I went through my stores of memories
and I let go
I touched them
read them
felt them
and then said good bye.

Some were easier than others, but it was good, it felt good...
it was time. (The kids had fun with it too...)

A little story of one of the things that happened during this cleaning out. I came across an envelope of special letters from special friends...
One of those letters was from a former roommate/workmate/and dear friend from Australia.
It was the first letter she wrote to me after moving back home. A letter I had kept, because her love had meant so much and still does. But I knew I did not need to keep that reminder anymore. I read the letter, had a laugh and put it into the recycling pile. After a couple hours I went up stairs and checked my email...low and behold there was an email from her. Irony??? It was such a full circle of affirming to me that it is not the "stuff" that makes the memories real, it is the feelings and emotions that not only make it real, but keep it alive. We still keep in touch, after 20 years and whenever we connect it is effortless and easy, like it was just yesterday we were young women discovering the world and ourselves...and perhaps getting into a "little trouble" along the way.

When we acknowledge our being enough, so many things, that we think we need falls away.

When I did my Silent Retreat back in November, Vulnerability made herself know to me quite clearly. That She had come to reside and would not be leaving any time soon.
One of the guided exercises we could do was to reflect on what kind of tree we saw ourselves as.
This was my tree I drew...please keep in mind drawing is not a strong suit : )

I felt, at the time I was going through a change of season...
That evening, when I had my one on one session with my Spiritual Mentor I brought my picture with me.
I shared with her the reflections of my day, my fears of the storm, my feeling that a winter is coming, which leaves me feeling unsettled. I see the leaves falling off of me, the layers being pealed away...and though I am ready and willing to let go of these layers, these things of my past,  I also see the Vulnerability that is left and I am uncertain of being so exposed during a time of cold and winds.

Her Perspective:
She sees me as a Silver Birch Tree, bright in the forest. It's bark reflects silver in the moon light and holds the moons light within it.

She said in my Nakedness and Vulnerability I reflect Light to those journeying through the darkness of the forest. I give Light to their way, making their paths brighter. This is not a season to be afraid, but a season of stillness and freedom. As the remainder of my past falls to the ground and rots away I am left free and open to guide others through the forest of life, through their own winter.

That evening I asked that my Wounds be deepened into Wisdom and that my Soul find Rest in Loving Grace.

something I do not feel comfortable with
in this moment
but something I am willing to sink into
and learn to be
a "muscle" I am willing to "work out"

This year I will complete my book
publish it
share it with those
who are meant to hear it.
For me
it is the ultimate in vulnerability
as it is my story...
my personal story
about God and me
and Our journey
back to myself
after wandering in the darkness
unable to see fully, the power of Love and Light.

It is time...

this is me.

Love and Light


  1. this is beautiful. :) i'm impressed that you were able to do some serious cleaning...i'm incredibly sentimental and have the hardest time throwing anything away. so i definitely feel you there. good job. i like your word for the year. it's a scary word. who likes being vulnerable? but i think without vulnerability there would be no growth. and i definitely want to read your book whenever you publish it. that's a very brave thing. you always inspire me. <3

  2. Beautiful words, Cat, and sounds like there's an exciting year ahead! I bet it feels amazing to start with such a clean slate. Loved the story about your Australian friend emailing you in the same moments you were letting go of your letter from her. Looking forward to seeing what this year holds for you!

  3. Beautiful you. I cried as I scrolled through to see your angelic self. So proud of you and excited to watch you unfold do vulnerably this year. Xo.

  4. That's amazing. Love the irony in your story- I read it to my hubby. Very powerful when the Universe speaks through patterns. Sounds like an exciting year! Can't wait to hear about your book. I loved the tree imagery- I may try that with my ladies group. Thanks!:)

  5. And you are simply beautiful my friend!

  6. You are brave, Cat. Your open-ness is beautiful. ♥

  7. Sounds like a good time to be in Cat, cathartic, renewing. I look forward to reading your book and hearing your story. Just like the tree, we can't produce new fruit unless we go through the dead of winter, the shedding of the old, the resting, the growing of roots downwards and in the spring out pops new life, new things to give birth to. Exciting. Love to you, Sophie

    PS blog is up and running and malware free now.

  8. love that pic of the boys :) I was pondering getting rid of the last of my baby clothes the other day too..

  9. Catherine, you definitely do reflect light to those making their way through the darkness. I am excited for you, that you have this word (vulnerability) and direction to walk in this year. I also like your words"this is not a season to be afraid, but a season of stillness and freedom". That is a real encouragement to me too, as I have often wondered what happens to us when we are in a "winter"season. Thanks for sharing friend!

  10. Just read your latest posting and I too relate to vulnerability. I also feel that it is my theme for this year. Starting the year with a massive cleaning like you did is awesome. What a great way to start 2012. I am proud of you my dear friend. Continue on, my precious messenger, the best is in front of you,

  11. Vulnerability, what a powerful word. I love seeing your truth and honesty here. You draw me with your words. Thanks for sharing your beautiful self and picture with us! Can't wait to read more of your story.
    Catherine Denton

  12. exquisite beauty.. in your post and you. beautiful beautiful. I loved the story of your friend's letter and then the email. There are no coincidences. I really believe that. xo

  13. Just awesome. To read Your empowerment in cleansing and realizations.
    All is certainly within and the tale of the olden letter and then a new message was exact in this. You are brave in this and inspiring.
    I need to sort through more cluttered boxes mySelf and let go. I was faced with this as I had been thrifting and not really wanting to bring anymore in. No need.
    The silver birch tree has long been symbolic to me also. Renewal and purification.
    You are beautiful as are the photographs. (Adore the dog peering in the window too)

  14. Beautiful.
    Love what this year will bring friend.


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