Ripe With Love


Back a few years ago, I fell in love with someone new. The moment I met him, I knew he was someone I wanted to know deeply. I met him with a wide-open heart.

You know that feeling of being so ready for love? Where the eagerness and light-heartedness far outweigh your wisdom and discernment? That’s where I was.

You see, I had just completed an intense transformational retreat where my heart was broken open – open so wide, that it found its way back to its natural tendency to trust. I had finally come through the deep grief of my late-husband’s death, a death that had plucked me out of Kansas and dropped me in Oz. Death didn’t provide me with ruby slippers, though. Death seems to be like that. It doesn’t give you a way home to the old life. Instead, you must travel through the darkness to discover the new life waiting on the other side.

So I found myself with this brilliant heart of light. I had known deep lasting love with my late-husband, and I felt eagerness to love again. But, I was different now, and I didn’t yet know how different I was.

So, here I was ready for love. I dove right in. It was deep and rich and sweet. Then it ended. He ended it. It wasn’t mean to be. I can see that now, but back then, I didn’t see it coming. My very pink heart took one hell of a hit.

I fell hard. I curled up inside my shell and thought long and hard about giving my heart away so easily. Why hadn’t I seen it coming? Why did I trust so easily and carelessly?

And then I saw it. I saw how I had left myself to be in relationship with him. I didn’t see it happening at the time. But, in the aftermath of rejection, I realized I felt untethered and unmoored. I was no longer solidly in myself. I was hanging out there. I was perched precariously in no-man’s land – literally. The man I thought was there had moved on.

Somewhere along the way, I had gone from ‘in here with me’ to ‘over there with him’. The realization shook me to the core. When had it happened? How could I have done that to myself?

I decided I wasn’t going to date again until I found the wisdom that must accompany the open trusting heart. I needed time to understand. I needed time to make sense of the lesson that was being offered up.

So I sat with myself. And I felt. And I danced. This is when I began to dance as a practice, a practice that provided the opening to embodiment. And, I began to be really honest with myself. I began to see how much I had projected onto this man. I could see how enveloping an open heart can be when it’s not grounded in oneself and balanced with discernment and wisdom.

My teacher has since talked about what happens when the heart opens, how it can lead us into places we don’t expect to be when its not yet tempered with the wisdom that comes after the opening. But at the time, I had to learn this myself.

While he wasn’t all that gracious or compassionate in how he went about ending the relationship, I saw his ending it as rejection. This was another sign I had left me. The good thing about this was that the feeling of rejection was my doorway in, my doorway into me. I suddenly saw me, my own reflection in his rejection and I realized it was time to come inside to find the love I was longing for. I wasn’t really longing for him, the man out there. I was longing to know me, to stand by me, to stay with me from the beginning.

Then, they came unannounced, as they so often do. Words came. Words came up through my body and out through my fingers. Wisdom wound its way up from somewhere down in the dark recesses, places I had pushed away a long time ago.

Wisdom coursed out my fingers onto the page. No editing was necessary, for it knew itself fully before it was formed.

When the writing was done, I stood up from the desk and went to throw up. I threw up as if I was expelling something poisonous from my body – and I was. They were poisonous beliefs that kept me looking out there for love. As these beliefs were released, wisdom, that had longed to see the light of day, flooded my body and mind, wisdom that was meant for me.

Wisdom hungers to be known by the one it loves.

ripe with love

You see me here, strong and soft, eager and afraid,
my heart racing with desire
to be seen and heard,
to be held and to hold.

I am here,
from this bondage placed on me long ago,
from this cage of sin, fault, and fear.

I found the key
to my release when
I saw myself
in the reflection of your rejection.

My open heart was
both weakness and threat, lover and enemy.
You saw me seeing you
and you shut the door on my escape.

But freedom is funny,
it was mine to find all along.
Redemption came
when I filled my emptiness, with the fullness of me.

The dive was deep, the way was dark.
On the surface I had only seen,
how I never quite matched up
with everything I was expected to be.

But as I dove deeper into the depths of my being,
A glorious Light began to emerge.
It came from a time long ago,
It called me home in a language I had long forgotten.

There, deep inside me, I found the seed
Planted long ago, at the beginning of time.
My deepest Self, my truest Truth
My inner being in perpetual Spring.

I am ripe with love,
Ripe with the nectar of passionate presence
I am here to hold you,
within the folds of my velvet petals.

Fall down, deep down, into the depths of my being.
For I blossom in time to break your fall
As you land with a thundering whisper,
“Catch me, please catch me.”

Open yourself to the center of me.
Drink deeply the love that has been waiting for you,
waiting with timeless patience,
knowing what has always been, will be again.

Let me lay side-by-side with you.
Let me feel again how perfect the fit is,
if we only allow ourselves to relax
into the shape we already are.

Remember the rightness of this fit.
Don’t fight what you know to be true.
I can love side by side again,
Knowing the love comes through me to you.

You see me here,
soft and strong, knowing and sure.
My heart is filled with the truest Truth and the brightest Light
See your Self reflected in my love.

~ Julie Daley


Why am I sharing this with you today? After I wrote my post of last week, The Courage to Sin, I remembered this poem, written as I traveled from ‘out there’ to ‘in here’, as I came back from ‘out there with him’ to ‘back in here with me’. I remembered how I had wound my way out of the structures that I had believed in for all those years, structures that told me I could only find love ‘out there’.

And in writing the post about sin, I revisited the sense of rejection: rejection of self, rejection of  body, women rejecting each other, rejection of men, and rejection by society of the natural, intrinsic beauty of the feminine nature of things. Perhaps I’ve gone from the microcosm to the macrocosm. Seems like I’m traveling in circles.

I see that current-day cultures, fed by patriarchal beliefs and practices, reject the woman who speaks truth, the woman with a voice, the woman with fire, the woman that no longer wishes to roll over and play pretty.

Just as it was with the man ‘out there’, so it is with the world ‘out there’. I can’t find the wisdom ‘out there’. I can only find it in here, in the depths of my own being. And if I’m seeing rejection, then I’ve left myself. That’s the real pain, rejection of self.

Anything growing needs roots down deep into the earth to support its growth, to give it nourishment as it opens to the sun, rain, wind and stars. And so it is with humans. We, too, must have strong roots, grounded in the earth, so that we are nourished with wisdom, the wisdom of the feminine principle, the wisdom of Sophia. With this available to us, we can marry this with our internal masculine and come into a more balanced harmony within.

I have found my heart can open, and stay open, even in the most difficult times, as long as I am rooted in the body, rooted down into the center of things. If I am to truly love another, and I’m not just talking about the other I’m in relationship with, but all beings, my love must come from this grounded place within my own body, within my open heart. When the body is grounded in the earth, the heart is held by the body, and the mind is held by the heart, clarity, compassion and sovereignty can flourish.

I must remember this now as I begin to voice the truth of my own experience and as I listen, with an open heart, to women and men voice theirs.

This is where our power resides as human beings. It is available to us when our open hearts are grounded in wisdom. Power that isn’t power to dominate, but power to all the love we have to give. The seed of our wisdom was planted long ago. It remains, simply waiting for us to turn and look within.


And, you?

I wonder what you’ve experienced? What have you learned about an open heart and wisdom? What lessons have relationship, loss, and death taught you? What journeys have you taken within? How has wisdom hungered to be known within you? I’d love to hear. I’d love to know what you’ve discovered down in the depths of your own body and in the openness of your heart

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16 Replies to “Ripe With Love”

  1. Wow, Julie. Wow. You hit the nail on the head, over and over and over again here.

    ‘in here with me’ and ‘out there with him’. I’ve done this in every one of my relationships, save my current relationship. I have no doubt that this is the heart of our foundation—we allow each other and ourselves to be the individuals we fell in love with so we can be in a truly functional relationship.

    ‘Anything growing needs roots down deep into the earth to support its growth, to give it nourishment as it opens to the sun, rain, wind and stars.’ This reminds me of what I learned about cactus plants. They are drought-tolerant as long as you get them off to a healthy, watered, rooted start. We’re kind of the same way. Thing is, you can’t just stop watering the cactus. And you can’t just stop nurturing yourself.

    You capture the essence what it is to be human so beautifully here, Julie. Your authenticity and candor is inspiring. I thank you for your seeds of wisdom here; and for having the courage to take a look and see what those seeds look like and feel like; and then for digging them up in the first place and sharing them with us here.

    Bless your beautiful, kind, courageous, authentic, passionate, wisdomatic, female heart!!

    1. Dian, I love your analogy of the cactus, most especially the part about needing to establish that foundation early on. I think that is true for humans, too. Unfortunately, most of us don’t learn that we belong to the earth, or to root ourselves into her, when we’re young enough to let it sink in.
      Thank you for your kind words, too, for you inspire me to dive deeper.

  2. Julie, you’ve left me breathless. This is so raw, beautiful, honest and true. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for sharing every single profound word of it.

    I wish I could answer your question, but I feel like my heart is just beginning to open for the first time, or at least the first time in my adult life. I’ve never let my heart be truly unguarded, because I’ve always carried the expectation of profound hurt lurking around the corner and knowing I didn’t have the strength to not lose myself. I didn’t have a clear enough picture of myself to notice it when it disappeared. I’m now beginning to come into focus. So my heart opens. I’ll let you know how it goes.

    I am overflowing with gratitude to know you.

    1. Emma, how beautiful that you are now entering that new phase of open heartedness. Wisdom will come as you open to it and your heart. Thank you for your kind words and your friendship. I love knowing you, and look forward to more and more…

  3. Dear Julie too many coincidences are letting me recognize that I HAVE to write to this space outside (you) to mirror mine inside (me), two Selves mirroring each other. So I am finding myself connecting with you, so, that I may come into your consciousness as a person – as a woman not knowing why this wants to happen.
    First thank you for your sharing and your poem it brings me immediately home. Truth has to be spoken, from whom has found the words down there. Thank you.

    I like to share only the essence of the letter (I translate from German) I wrote to my beloved friends a new year gift… begins like this
    ….2010…….what I wanted to tell you, because this is what cares to me………

    ……………….after 35 years of migraine, what a wild journey!! I have been putted to bed from one moment to the other, every month for three days no light, no eating, no drinking: What a teaching!
    I wanted to thank each and everyone of you who still is my friend and still is nourishing a relationship with me in person. What a journey of uncertainty and this here in Switzerland, where everything is sosaid structured, stable and reliable. I know that you had to go through the same I had to go through. You HAD to say Yes to disappointment, yes to renouncement (sometimes mine or your birthday party), yes to letting go of wantings, Yes to the formless, yes to failure, Yes to letting go of moral concepts, yes to pain, yes to Not-Knowing, Yes to being alone, yes to oneself, yes to love. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the intimacy, authenticity and to the closeness that I could experience through you in staying in relationship with me. Thank you all, who could seek and find form again and again and who were true to their whispering needs and heart wishes for making it possible to meet me, no matter how many times the meetings failed, and I bow to myself for doing the same. We had to learn to not take it personally, non of it, both of us. Thank you all that recognized my commitment, my reliability and my connectivity beyond of actions and happenings and that they didn’t give up on me, on us.
    I wish you that relaxed action continues happening in your life and that you may harvest the abundance and the juice of these fruits even if there wouldn’t be a migraine friend anymore.

    yes, ripe with love… Julie…… I drink your juice which is mine

    love you

    1. Dear Rafhara,
      ” I am finding myself connecting with you, so, that I may come into your consciousness as a person – as a woman not knowing why this wants to happen.” I absolutely love that you wrote here to connect us, and am honored to know you. Who knows why anything wants to happen. I guess that’s the divine mystery of it all, but we do know when it wants to happen through us. Thank you for sharing your very moving words here, too. I used to know some German, but I am glad you translated for me. I hope to see you here more, stopping by to share your wisdom with us. Blessings to you.

  4. Wow! I’m singing a chorus behind Dian (her words) “You hit the nail on the head, over and over and over again here.”

    I’ve just been swimming in the realization that my first relationship HAS to be with me!! Have been listening to John Welwood’s Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships CD’s (so much more to the heart, for me, than the book – just because of the interactions on the CDs).

    So many things you wrote about resonated with me – it’s like I’ve been on the same journey – but one street over or something. loving this – will RT it and will read it again and again. Thank you!!

    1. Karen,
      “it’s like I’ve been on the same journey – but one street over ” so that was YOU over there! Yes, it seems we all do this sort of dance, I guess. John Welwood is great. I did a retreat with him a few years back.
      Thanks for RTing and for reading these words. xo

  5. Beautiful Julie! Thank you for opening your heart of wisdom to us. Wisdom and love dancing together before our eyes. How is it that we so easily loose ourselves and how long the journey is to finding ourselves once again..
    Thank you for the illuminating insights, your courage is inspiring.

    1. Marjory, Thank you for your kind words and love. Wisdom, love and inspiration…so many things we women can offer to each other. What a treasure our tribe of women is. xo

  6. oh, shoot. where to start . . .

    “power” is such a loaded word for me. so much dirt clinging to it – i am in my own “in here” process now, and part of what i’m doing is shaking the dirt off that word to get a clearer picture of what it is to me. you have helped with that. thank you.

    as i read your post for the 2nd time (i love that your posts slow me down, ground me, push everything else aside), i remember how when my chiclets were teens, i held an in-house How To Flirt class. (i am a strange mother. yes i am.) (and, really, it was about so much more than flirting, but i could never have gotten their attention without using the right words. marketing. it was pure marketing strategy.) one of the things i told my teenbabies was that there’s something downright sexy about a person who knows who they are. who is confident in their own skin. who enjoys love and companionship but is enough on their own. told them their hearts are precious, and they should be very careful about giving even the teensiest part of it away.

    okay, enough about that weekend.

    rejection is another word i’m shaking the dirt off of in my “in here” work. i find that too often people want to talk about rejection in victim voice. and here you are, shaking the dirt off and letting the word, the act breathe and glow and lead. you write of how death landed you in oz and you had to find a different path. of course rejection is a kind of death, too, and the trick is finding the road that leads out of the darkness.

    when i started graduate school in 2003, my husband bought me a piece of art from ebay – something he thought represented what i was doing. it’s a figure making her way into the earth, into what must be a cave. a cave positively glowing from the light within. husband may be an engineer, a linear thinker who doesn’t always get me, but occasionally he does. and this was one of those times.

    this is another jewel of a post that i’ll chew on for a long, long time. unlike a stick of gum, your posts do not lose their flavor on the bedpost every night.

  7. You know you always knock me out Julie! Your poem was positively beautiful and oh-so-powerful. You always prompt me to share things, that I don’t always freely share. Maybe part of that is feeling safe in the company that I’m in here in your space. There is healing in sharing amongst the tribe.

    Lord… have I ever had experience loving from ‘out there’, and all of the pain and rejection that goes along with it. Probably like Dian said, in every relationship except for my current one.

    At the beginning of this year, I wrote a post about a great loss, and it was during this period in my life, that I was reintroduced to ‘loving in here with me’. I experienced betrayal, rejection, choosing to leave a relationship and the loss that went with that, soul wrenching pain, and ultimately the loss (meaning death) of my soon to be ex husband.

    It was during that time, in the deepest depths of despair that I’ve ever experienced, that I found the greatest gift I could have ever received. I rediscovered me, and got back in touch with the importance of loving me first. My heart was cracked wide open – in a very very good way. I learned so much…I had never treated myself so awful. My first reaction to everything was to torture myself, and punish myself as much as possible. Coming out on the other side of it, was one of the most enlightening, and best experiences of my life. My heart more open because of it. Me more rooted because of it.

  8. Thank you, Julie, for another wonderful, powerful entry. Your blog posts are extraordinary and this one in particular moved me to write. I admire you for what you have endured, the loss of your husband and the loss of this relationship, and how insightful and strong you are. When you talk about projecting something on to someone else, I think of how often I do that, almost automatically, this person will do for me what I cannot do for myself. And losing oneself in a desire to please someone else. Your description of rediscovering yourself and experiencing yourself in a new way, especially through writing and dance is profound. Regarding my past relationships, I have come to a degree of acceptance, I made choices and did what I did because of who I was at the time. May I live differently today, and your forceful stirring physical words will help me do that. Acting for myself and in my interests and loving another and helping another and taking care of another are not mutually exclusive. I think of the oft-quoted line from Kahlil Gibran, “drink from each other’s cup, but not from the same cup.” (I probably mangled it.) You are so wonderful, Julie, a beacon and more. Thank you!

  9. Julie,

    This has spoken to my heart. It is so hard to balance what your mind says to you with what you feel in the core of your person. I find myself making the choice to go from the heart more and more these days. There is a truth each of us carries in us. It is sometimes difficult to face but having faced our own truths we lift the veil that is over our life and can experience the world with a new perspective. I applaud you for you openess and for the courage it took to examine your relationship in the context your heart. I plan to share this entry with others as so many women I know look outside of themselves for happiness and self esteem. Thank you so much.

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