The Moon and Her Medicine

“The moon is a loyal companion.

It never leaves. It’s always there, watching, steadfast, knowing us in our light and dark moments, changing forever just as we do. Every day it’s a different version of itself. Sometimes weak and wan, sometimes strong and full of light. The moon understands what it means to be human.

Uncertain. Alone. Cratered by imperfections.”

― Tahereh Mafi, Shatter Me

Do you ever look up in the night sky to search for the moon? Can you feel her pull at certain times of the month more than others? Are you familiar with the phases of the moon? It is beautiful and profound to reflect how every human being has looked up into the sky and viewed the same moon and observed the same cycles. The moon is a focal point, the one thing we all share with our ancestors. My great great great grandmother glowed in the same moon. My displaced native and african ancestors found familiarity, stability and sense of time by looking up at her in the sky. The depth of this truth simply blows my mind.

Finding this connection to earth and my ancestors, the moon has helped me root more deeply into my being and has guided me to my authentic self. I want to share how lunar work has facilitated my journey of expansion and healing. The moon has opened my heart and brought our collective need to heal and change into focus.

“We are all like the bright moon, we still have our darker side.”

― Khalil Gibran

I started journaling with the lunar cycles almost two years ago after purchasing Moonology, by Yasmin Boland. Since childhood, I nurtured an interest in astrology and felt pulled to the moon, but after reading Moonology I fell down the lunar rabbit hole… Her book detailed the movements of the moon, and although I found discussions of the signs and the houses fascinating, what resonated with me most was the exercise of setting intentions with the new moon and release and gratitude with the full moon.

I love journaling. As a creative, I have written in spurts throughout my life and found it deeply cathartic and healing. Two years ago, mother to an infant and toddler, I found myself struggling to carve out time to write. Without a focus and routine, I ended up just not writing at all. Lunar work shifted this block for me.

When first introduced to practicing with the lunar cycle, I realized it would be a perfect way to ease myself into some much needed self care. These large movements of the moon, from new to full, occurred every two weeks. I could commit to writing every two weeks. At the new moon, I would dial in, grab my journal, essential oils, and a couple of stones, and write my intentions for the next two weeks. Those intentions stuck with me, and at the full moon I’d focus on what I needed to work on releasing. I found this part very rewarding. My ritual started simply, but I incorporated a little more with each cycle. Sometimes there was yoga or meditation. Other times I would sage or take a bath.

There are many resources and guides now available as the moon is a growing trend. Sarah Gottesdiener’s Many Moons Workbook and Jill Wintersteen’s Spirit Daughter are a couple of my favorite resources that offer depth and scope to this practice. However popular moon work is becoming, I think it is much deeper than a trend. This movement is awakening our deepest wisdom and connection to earth medicine. Humans in various cultures and times throughout history have worked with the cycles of moon. With our current political turmoil, climate change disaster and social upheaval, there is a great need for healing on this earth and we are just coming back to her support.

Do you ever experience intense energy and heightened emotion only to realize the moon is full? This occurs because full moons are energetically charged and explosive, I mean, the word lunatic is derived from lunar! The practice of release around a full moon was often a powerful experience. I created sacred space for myself to feel, get angry and cry out loud. As a child and teenager, I often struggled with shame around crying and would hide it. Today, through this practice, I am allowing the tears and anger while celebrating the multitudes inside of me. Letting go, getting emotionally honest and vulnerable, is not always easy or pretty. Aligning with the natural energies of the moon made this an easier process as She is my ally. There is no judgement, only acceptance of the darkness within myself, within all humans.

“The moon is a reminder that no matter what phase I am in, I am still whole” Unknown

I find the issues I often work to release, to sit with, to let go of, are old, powerful, and are there for a reason. I don’t think this is a unique experience. They stick around to teach us, as Pema Chodron says, “Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.” Continuing to come back to these sticky topics each cycle, I found myself diving deeper and deeper into my shadow side. I was able to delve into my own internalized racism, traumas, blockages, perfectionism, anger and sadness. For me, this work was not focused on manifestation per say, but learning more about myself with the guidance and support of the moon. I found that I had cycles too, this emotional work came in waves. Through this realization I found more acceptance, compassion, gratitude, space for parts of myself I tend to be critical about. I found healing with the moon’s medicine.

The spiritual growth, healing and sense of connection I found through working with the moon is truly profound. I felt I needed to share this gift with others, and started by sharing my personal work with other women in my community to find they too were called to the moon without quite knowing why.

I’ve hosted moon gatherings where we co-create sacred space with the intention to hold each other through the cycles of our lives, without judgement and shame, aligning with the energy of the moon. I shared my experiences with them and was able to work my block around leading and teaching others. I found the strength to stand in my vulnerability, to confront my fears and to share sacred space to do the work together. I’ve loved bringing people together and creating collective healing through ceremony. When we heal ourselves, we heal each other, our communities and the world. Because we all need healing, support and connection to the ourselves, the earth and our ancestors, I found the moon can do this seamlessly.