Tonight, I walked my dogs through the woods, alone.
I was really anxious about walking through the forest by myself in the dark, because as women, we’ve been conditioned from an early age to feel fear.
And tonight, at the entrance to this dark forest, I felt really fucking angry that I was scared to just walk my dogs in the moonlight, under the stars, in the fresh air, ‘just in case…’
So, I took a deep breath, set an intention for safety and freedom, and I put one foot in front of the other until I was far enough into the trees, that there was no going back.
At some point, a torch flashed on and off in the distance, and my heart started racing. I walked faster, working through any anxiety as consciously as I could.
I heard footsteps behind me, and looking over my shoulder periodically, my senses were on high alert until the two men with dogs passed me and I could breathe again.
Do they feel that fear from the women they walk past, I wonder? And if they do, how must that feel for them? Terrible? Powerful? Indifferent?
I walked quickly through the forest, with my little dogs leading me onto the footpath, until I could see the streetlights again. As my heartbeat slowed down, and my breath calmed, I stood for a minute, just looking up at the sliver of beautiful moon showing herself in the February sky, with the stars dancing around her.
And in that moment, I felt safe.
I felt free.
Just as I had intended.
I was grateful for that moment at the end of my walk, when I didn’t need to watch my back, listen for footsteps, or feel that deep, primal fear that we women carry with us whenever we have to walk alone in the dark.
But I was also grateful that I could face that fear, not just tonight, but throughout life in general.
And I was grateful for all the soul work I do, as I grow and evolve, and become more comfortable and skilled at sitting in aloneness and in darkness.
And finally, I was grateful for the fire that I carry in my belly, helping me burn through challenges, cycles, seasons and changes; giving me the confidence and courage to spit flames when I need to, and keep myself warm and wild.