Archives for category: teenagers
antlered-dreams-2013

Last night I had a vivid dream. It stayed with me all day: I had been invited to spend the day with a group of teenagers. They were unknown to me (meaning that they were not friends of my own three teenagers). Their intention was to show me The Ways of the Future.

They put me in a classroom (it actually had a whiteboard!) Then they started telling me how working with ancient gods and goddesses is no longer good enough. We need to actively create the gods and goddesses of the future. If we do not do this, we will continue to create a future shaped and delineated by the past.

As I have a very great love for (and intimate relationship with) many ancient gods and goddesses I felt some resistance rising. I felt I had to speak in support of  of those ancient deities. The teenagers laughed and gently pressed me down on my chair again.

It is simple! They said. The future will not resemble the past. We young people live in a time of unheard of opportunities and dangers. We need gods and goddesses that patrol the internet. Gods and Goddesses invigilating social media. Facebook needs a Face Goddess and Twitter needs a Bird Goddess. We also need a True Face God and gods in charge of the drugs that teenagers use at parties… As our concept  of reality expands (reality has never been what we think it is anway!) ever more gods and goddesses can enter and fill our consciousness. We conceive them just as they conceive us!

I am feeling dizzy. Here I thought I was progressive in the way I teach and work. The teenagers proceeded to draw faces on the white board. The face of gods and goddesses. They proceeded to name them and invoke them, welcome them.

They said: gods and goddesses are shape-shifters and Reality is the greatest shape-shifter of them all!

Imelda Almqvist

 

About the author:

Imelda Almqvist’s book Natural Born Shamans: A Spiritual Toolkit For Life (Using shamanism creatively with young people of all ages) was published by Moon Books on 26th August 2016.  She is based in London,UK and teaches shamanism and sacred art internationally.

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk

https://imeldaalmqvist.wordpress.com/

http://shamanismsummit.com/

HONDURAS2011QuinnFeedingMonkey

Last week my husband took our three sons sailing. “Home Alone” I embarked on the mammoth task of clearing out my studio.

There are many paintings and art materials in my studio but our family history is stored there too.

Essentially I was opening time capsule after time capsule: boxes of drawings our children did when younger. Boxes of photographs from years ago. Little notes our children have written me over the years (most impressively an essay titled by our eldest son aged 8, titled WONDERFULL THINGS THAT YOU SHOULD KNOW – which essentially is about love and friendship. He was 8 years old when he wrote this).

I found letters from my father (who died almost exactly 6 years ago) with beautifully observed descriptions of our children as toddlers and younger children (today they have all ‘hit the double digits’ – they are 15, 13 and 11).

Sitting there, without the noise, distraction and demands of family life and family meals, with so much history passing through my hands, suddenly “time” felt like a most elusive dimension. It felt like my father had just walked upstairs and my children’s toddler selves were having a nap or hiding in the tree house.

And not just that, but any thoughts of the future had a similar ‘unreal’ quality to it. Like another day I will sit there with pictures of my children as teenagers passing through my hands. Or even my adult children finding these boxes and the ‘art portfolios’ I so lovingly made all of them, long after my own death. Perhaps showing them to their own children (if I am so lucky!)

Somehow it was a very good exercise in seeing what truly matters. In straightening out my priorities. As my husband often says: “In life we get so busy with what is URGENT that we do not always focus on what is IMPORTANT’.

Here is our son Quinn’s brilliant essay:

WONDERFULL FACTS THAT YOU SHOULD KNOW

1   Usually mums and dads are the best people in your life

2   There is always hope

3   Be strong when making your point so everyone knows

4   You should try to like everyone you know

5   Everyone is your family

6   Anything can be a friend

7   Care for everything and everyone

8   Help everyone in need you can help

9   Think about everyone and animals

10  Share and give what you can!

Really these are the ‘Ten Commandments of an Eight Year Old’. And they are no bad guidelines to live by.

Today same 8 year old is a giant 15 year old, who has joined his girlfriend and family for lunch to celebrate her birthday.

He said to me this morning (after I had given him a tutorial in how to properly wrap a gift for a girl in neon pink wrapping paper!): “Listen Mum, I don’t like shutting you and Dad our of my private affairs, but if you ask silly questions or make totally naff jokes, I am going to have to, you know?!”

And I have a yin to ask him to write down the TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR PARENTS OF TEENAGERS.

The picture shows our son, aged 8, up a tree in Honduras sharing his food with a Spider Monkey. (We were sailing up the coast of Central America when he was that age).

He just got in and I asked him to write a new set of commandments. He said: “Talk to me about it later. I need to think about it first…”

Imelda Almqvist

FAManniversary

“A daughter is your daughter for life – a son is your son until he takes a wife”.

When our three sons were born over a period of four years, people often told me manyvariations on this adage. What they were really trying to to do, or so I felt, was trying to provoke a reaction from me on giving birth to a son every time. Doesn’t every mother secretly yearn for a daughter to share girlie things with?

And I will admit that I would love to have had a daughter, but the bottom line (and best reply) surely is: “Babies are a Divine Cosmic Gift – thankfully having babies is not a ‘mail order system’ where you tick a box to express a preference.  Imagine if that were possible – think of China and the ‘One Child Policy’ – it would have created a whole generation of men never finding wife…. ”

My own mother often said: “Once you have boys, it is only a matter of time until the girls arrive, all by themselves. There is absolutely nothing you need to do, other than welcome them with open arms!” She was referring to teenage boys dating and bringing girlfriends home.

For many years this was a very abstract concept and in truth it worried me a little: how am I really going to feel when our tall and handsome blond firstborn son brings home a girlfriend?

There were many years in our house when girls were ‘yuck!!!” and pink was ‘the most vile colour on the planet’. My boys would not wear anything that had a hint of pink in it or on it, anywhere.

But this Autumn we had our very first flirtation with the notion of being ‘parents-in-law’ one day. Eldest son announced that he had a girlfriend – but she is not in any rush whatsoever to meet us.

They seem to be great friends most of all. They walk up the hill to school together every morning. She waits for him by our garden gate but does not press the doorbell. Only last week I happened to open the door to water a plant and I chanced a wave. I got a wave and a big smile back.

They are such an ‘item’ in school that they are now referred to by a joined name. Like Brangelina (Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie) but different…

However, the most wondrous thing is that our son has gained immense maturity and charm overnight. He is more patient with both younger children (such as his own brothers) and indulgent and  protective with both his elderly grandmothers. He voices sensible opinions on a wide range of matters. A year ago he sported a rather frightening cowlick of blond hair – but he now agrees to sharp haircuts, daily showers and he likes a crisp ironed white shirt to go with his school uniform. Maybe most importantly he is more even-tempered and pleasant to be with.  (His 15th birthday is at the end of this month, at the time of writing he is technically 14).

These are great gifts we are receiving from a short girl with long blond hair who is too shy to meet us, just yet!!

The other thing my wildest imagination hadn’t bargained for is how this Young Love brings back memories of our younger selves. Of walking hand in hand and having a wide open future. Of sitting in cafes in Amsterdam and Stockholm (in our case, we were older) and talking for hours. The cares of the world not yet on our shoulders. Healthy parents, sound sleep and hours of leisure time a day something we took for granted.

We have had to set a budget for gifts and dates.  He bought her a dream catcher necklace for Christmas (and I was allowed to wrap the gift!) The memories of our own first dates have suddenly returned in technicolor and there are moments we feel decades younger. We exchange secret smiles when we see her appear by the garden gate and we observe Eldest Son tripping over his own feet to get out of the front door.

So it seems that my mother was right…. Your son is your son for life – and if you are very lucky he takes a wife!

Why did no one tells me this? It seems that ‘first girlfriends’ are a well kept secret in more ways than one.  Hush!

Imelda Almqvist

www.imelda-almqvist-art.com

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

A dear friend of mine is the manager of a restaurant.  I bet she sees a very wide variety of human behaviour… There must be a very fine line between restaurant manager and sociologists, come to think of it!

Recently she reported that a mother brought in a toddler in her push chair for lunch. The toddler was knackered. The mother scrolled through the menu asking the child what she wanted for lunch: fish fingers? A hamburger? Something else perhaps? I was not present but as my friend told the story, the child was too exhausted to make up her mind and the mother kept reeling off more options.

Why would a parent do this? In the ‘good old days’ when my three sons were all aged four and under I remember reading some parenting books and one golden rule for very young children was: give them a limited choice. Meaning: would you like to wear your red top or blue top today (but we are not pulling everything out of the closet). This was to give the child a sense of independence yet contain the situation. Being offered too many options makes (tired, young, excitable) children feel overwhelmed! (I mean: I feel overwhelmed with choice just shopping in the local Sainsbury’s Super Store – how am I going to choose from a whole aisle full of different types of olive oil?! I am not even into cooking!!)

My friend’s intuition told her that this mother had read a lot parenting books too and had possibly started living in “fear of therapy”. And let’s face it: at the rate parents (and read ‘mothers’ in particular) are being blamed for all that goes wrong in a child’ life and development these days, I can see how you’d decide to ‘play safe’. But where does that leave us?

This young girl would (probably) have benefited greatly from a more limited choice: fish fingers or burger – and then down for an afternoon nap. Like my friend I observe a trend towards ‘discipline failure’ around me. “Give the poor child what it wants so I don’t blamed for it in therapy later”.

Another such a trend is to be a Trendy Parent and claim that your son or daughter is your ‘best friend’. (Ideally get interviewed for some lifestyle magazine in matching outfits, if you can manage it!)  Now I don’t hold with this at all. My youngest son will sometimes try to annoy me by calling me ‘Imelda’ instead of ‘Mum’. My reply is, unfailingly: “I am Mum to you and I have not invited you to call me Imelda”. It is by really shouldering the responsibilities that go with the role of parent, that we make our children feel safe. They will kick against the rules and complain vociferously but their world will be secure and predictable – or at least as secure and predictable as we can make it in an uncertain world.

Somewhat to my dismay I overheard my 10 year old son discussing “cyber bullying” with a 9 year old friend recently.  They were both well informed and very eloquent on the subject. When I was 10 years old – the internet did not exist. I cycled around town by myself, my parents didn’t drive me everywhere. I did not own a mobile phone – mobile phones didn’t exist then. It was a different world. Cyber bullying certainly wasn’t a concern – but being bullied on the way to school was a real problem.

And so today’s parents have the challenge of parenting children in an era that offers almost unlimited options for communication and education. At age 17 for me there were three real choices: Art School, Medical School or Music School? (I chose Art School) but my 14 year old son has started his GCSE’s and a bewildering array of future choices is now open to him. He communicates with his friends in ways that I don’t even comprehend. He does own a smart phone. I have asked him not to bring it to family meals because every time a friend messages him it tweets like a songbird in the pocket of his school blazer. And those ‘tweets’ are about as frequent as a human heartbeat.

So the point I am really trying to make here is that I think we do more harm by overwhelming a child at too young an age than by offering an appropriate selection of choices for every age range. And if we invite our child to call us ‘Jim’ or ‘Kate’ and to be our mate – we rob them of a parent. We rob them of the words ‘Mum’ and ‘Dad’ and the way young people anchor and tether and define themselves by referring to their Mum and Dad. We even rob them of the ambition to ‘not be like my Mum or Dad’!

My children will go ‘Aw Muuuuuuuuuuuuum!” when I draw the line about something – but I hope that I am teaching them how to draw certain lines for themselves in the future. How to make good choices. How to say ‘no’. How to say ‘my Mum’ with that classical mixture of annoyance and affection.

And my take on therapy? Well, I did write another blog recently, about shamanic healing and therapy!

https://imeldaalmqvist.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/shamanic-healing-andor-psychotherapy-2/

I do not believe that children arrive as ‘blank sheets’. On the level of soul they arrive with their own unique purpose and sacred dream – and also with a wish list for learning to do here on Planet Earth.

As a shamanic practitioner and mother I do not believe we can protect our children from all pain and harm – but we can teach them how to dance with life’s challenges by embracing the challenges that come our own way in ways that might inspire them.

I cannot say if my children will ever need therapy or not. That will be for them to decide. I believe that all of us are on a journey to wholeness on the level of soul. And that seeds for great healing can be found even in very unpromising situations.

Maybe one day one of my own children will write a blog about parenting – I hope I live to see that day, even if I might not like all I will then read!

Imelda Almqvist

www.imelda-almqvist-art.com

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anubis 2013 Pentax

Have you ever taken a moment to contemplate the difference between the words innocence and ignorance? Maybe take a few minutes now  to meditate on this and feel the change in energy?

Jewish people will observe Yom Kippur soon.

Yom Kippur (Hebrew: יוֹם כִּפּוּר, IPA: [ˈjom kiˈpuʁ], or יום הכיפורים), also known as Day of Atonement, is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people.[1] Its central themes areatonement and repentance. Jewish people traditionally observe this holy day with an approximate 25-hour period of fasting and intensive prayer, often spending most of the day in synagogue service  (from Wikipedia)

The reason that I find myself writing about this subject today is because I have been getting into discussions with friends recently about the question: “Can you do wrong, even harm others, without having any awareness you are doing something wrong?” To find the answer to that we only need to go back to World War II, I guess. Much has been written about people claiming “they had no idea what was being done to the Jews” (I have even heard – read – people claim that concentration camps never happened).

A  dear friend (Vicki Semo Scharfman) recently put it like this: “If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem!”  That is a great quote and it says a lot with few words! Another dear friend (Sony Baron) was telling (and teaching) me about Yom Kippur recently.

To me there is an even more ‘insidious issue’ lurking in the jungle’ here.  Earlier this summer I wrote a blog titled FORGIVENESS. It sparked off some very interesting discussions on Facebook (I occasionally think it is a shame that what people write on FB does not make it into the comments section on either Facebook or Youtube, or wherever material is officially shared – this means that many people do not get to benefit from the follow up discussion. But that as an ‘aside’!)

I think that we all like to think that on a great cosmic level, things balance out somehow. Evils are righted, forgiveness is obtained, negative energy is transmuted and so forth. But to forgive, or transmute something, the person responsible needs to realise they did something wrong in the first place.

Have you ever been in a situation where you felt terribly hurt by something someone did, yet they seem blissfully unaware of this and not  remotely awake to any shift in energy between you? I guess that this is part of the human condition! I can’t interview all people alive today but I guess a large number would recognise what I am talking about.

So how does forgiveness (or repentence, atonement) relate to things we are not aware we have done – or failed to do?

The word innocence refers to a pure and almost childish quality. It implies a “not knowing” but also a “maybe growing into knowing” by getting older or more mature. Children are often called innocent.

The word ignorance implies a “lack of knowing” but in a sense of “should have known. Should have made the effort. Should drop their blinkers” and take some responsibility

And so I have found myself wondering what  happens on a spiritual level when we are ignorant, or when a childish innocence turns into a more regrettable adult ignorance.

Ignorance can incense! It can arouse extreme anger and indignation!

From doing ancestral healing work I know that whatever the ancestors haven’t resolved is passed on to future generations. Energetically speaking there is a debt, a challenge, something that seeks to come alight, something that “floats up for healing” (depending on how judgmental you want to be!)

I also know that as my life progresses, I sometimes find myself thinking of people I knew (or even met briefly) years ago. Because something has just happened to me and and in retrograde I wish to send them understanding and empathy: NOW I know why you said this, or acted that way twenty years ago…

(An example of this is a man I was thinking of earlier today. I do not know his name or where he is today. Over 20 years ago he told me that he had spent his whole live caring for children and stepchildren and felt he had lost out big time on ‘freedom and space for his own interests’. The day I met him he had just heard that his son was expecting his first baby and expecting ‘granddad’ to provide childcare to he and his wife could continue to work. This man said he loved children dearly but he had had enough of the day-to-day care and grind, after DECADES of it…. He actually burst into tears as he said it. At that time I did NOT have children and it seemed a little….. exaggerated? Aren’t kids great? Is this what we want to hear when we tell Granddad the happy tidings?! However, today, writing as someone who has done a lot single parenting over 15 years, I understand EXACTLY what this man was saying. And today the solution seems pretty obvious: tell your son you are thrilled become a granddad and of course you will be there for them in emergencies, but you cannot provide the day-to-day childcare because you have some dreams to live yourself…. Tough love….)

So today, outside time, I sent a message to this man (a T Mail – a telepathic message!) “I understand completely now. I hope you did indeed take time and space for yourself!” Does it make a difference? \Is he even alive today?  I can’t say for sure. But I hope that some loving encouragement somehow reached him outside space and time.

So how can we avoid ignorance? Can we avoid ignorance?

For me it all goes back to “shadow work” (as it is called in both shamanism and psychology). Don’t just monitor your own thoughts and actions – but also monitor what drives you mad in other people. Those things are likely to be pointers to things, aspects, you hide from yourself. Reclaim them and own them!

If you are really and truly very brave: ask others how you drive them mad! And don’t punish them for the priceless information they produce!

(If you are married you probably get the “goods” free of charge, without even trying…. )

As I said at the beginning: Yom Kippur is soon, the Day of Atonement. If others forgive us – are we free of the need to atone and repent? I would say not. I think that in hurting others, we hurt ourselves at the same time. And even if we receive forgiveness for every thoughtless or unkind (or even malicious) deed – we are not automatically in harmony with ourselves. Not deep down. I am not Jewish but I think having a Day of Atonement is a good practice. Having a designated, and dedicated!, day, also means that many people are doing this tough internal work all at the same time. And that creates a large cloud of energy shifting, of doors opening and healing possibilities occurring. Personally, inter-personally and generationally (back to the ancestral healing work I mentioned earlier).

And what about innocence then: innocence implied a ‘lack of guilt’. Found “not guilty”. The word is often used too in the context of crimes or war zones: innocent people lost their lives.

“Innocent until proven guilty by a Court of Law”…. but ” there is no smoke without fire” are everyday idioms that touch upon this issue.

As a young  teenager cycling home from school I was once attacked by two girls who truly believed I had racially abused them the week before (I had not but I discovered I had a lookalike in the area). They put a knife on my wrist and said they cut my wrist unless I apologised. At that point a man happened to be passing on the cycling path and he intervened – allowing me to escape from the situation.

Was I innocent? Yes, I had definitely not shouted racial abuse at these girls the week before.

Was I ignorant? Yes, because at age I lived in a predominantly white city in The Netherlands where my understanding of racism was lacking and far from what (I hope!) it is today.

And though I pray my own teenage sons will never be held at knife point (I shudder to think of it!) I admit that these teenage girls too have stayed on my mind over the years. They will be middle aged women today, like me. What they did was undoubtedly wrong, but today I realise that being black in a predominantly white city and culture must have been extremely challenging for these teenage girls. I think they truly believed they had captured their tormentor. So today I would like to send them a T mail saying that I understand much better now why they acted the way they did. Today I do shadow work. I root around in the fertile soil that “everything I don’t like about myself” (rich soil indeed and there is plenty of it!) This is not the same as saying teenagers can pull knives on the people that annoy them!!

So my suggestion is that most people could benefit from a Day of Atonement. If all of us do it together – maybe we can shift some of our ‘cultural shadow’ (i.e. the things that all of us together choose to stay ignorant about)? And it would be very interesting to observe such shifts “with our eyes closed” – in the invisible world, the other world, the spirit world.

I am dedicating this blog to my dear friends Sony Baron and Vicki Semo Scharfman – who both got me thinking about this issue very seriously. Thank you ladies!

Imelda Almqvist

www.imelda-almqvist-art.com

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk

 

The title of the painting above is THE WEIGHING OF THE HEART CEREMONY (but my understanding is that it is the Jackal God Anubis weighing the heart, not Osiris!)

From wikipedia http://www.egyptian-scarabs.co.uk/weighing_of_the_heart.htm:

 

Weighing of the Heart

The Weighing of the Heart Ceremony

Weighing of the HeartThe ancient Egyptians believed that, when they died, they would be judged on their behaviour during their lifetime before they could be granted a place in the Afterlife. This judgement ceremony was called “Weighing of the Heart” and was recorded in Chapter 125 of the funerar text known as the “Book of the Dead“.

The ceremony was believed to have taken place before Osiris, the chief god of the dead and Afterlife, and a tribunal of 43 dieties. Standing before the tribunal the deceased was asked to name each of the divine judges and swear that he or she had not committed any offences, ranging from raising the voice to stealing. This was the “negative confession“. If found innocent, the deceased was declared “true of voice” and allowed to proceed into the Afterlife.

The proceedings were recorded by Thoth, the scribe of the gods, and the deity of wisdom. Thoth was often dipicted as a human with an ibis head, writing on a scroll of papyrus. His other animal form, the baboon, was often depicted sitting on the pivot of the scales of justice.

Weighing of the HeartThe symbolic ritual that accompanied this ritual was the weighing of the heart of the deceased on a pair of enormous scales. It was weighed against the principle of truth and justice ( known as maat ) represented by a feather, the symbol of the goddess of truth, order and justice, Maat. If the heart balanced against the feather then the deceased would be granted a place in the Fields of Hetep and Iaru. If it was heavy with the weight of wrongdoings, the balance would sink and the heart would be grabbed and devoured by a terrifying beast that sat ready and waiting by the scales. This beast was Ammit, “the gobbler“, a composite animal with the head of a crocodile, the front legs and body of lion or leopard, and the back legs of a hippopotamus.

The ancient Egyptians considered the heart to be the centre of thought, memory and emotion. It was thus associated with interlect and personality and was considered the most important organ in the body. It was deemed to be essential for rebirth into the Afterlife. Unlike the other internal organs, it was never removed and embalmed separately, because its presence in the body was crucial.

If the deceased was found to have done wrong and the heart weighed down the scales, he or she was not though to enter a place of tourment like hell, but to cease to exist at all. This idea would have terrified the ancient Egyptians. However, for those who could afford to include Chapter 125 of the Book of the Dead in their tombs, it was almost guaranteed that they would pass successfully into the Afterlife. This is because the Egyptians believed in the magical qualities of the actual writings and illustrations in funerary texts. By depicting the heart balancing in the scales against the feather of Maat they ensured that would be the favourable outcome. The entire ceremony was, after all, symbolic.

Following the Weighing of the Heart, the organ was returned to its owner. To make quite sure that this did happen, Chapters 26-29 of the Book of the Dead were spells to ensure that the heart was returned and this it could never be removed again.

 

 

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MOTHERHOODcitychild

When our eldest son was about eight he once suggested I “hire myself out to other families as a Super Nanny for out-of-control kids”! Until today I have not been able to work out if he thought I’d truly have a talent for that or if he considered me such a strict mother that it seemed like the obvious career choice… a modern version of The Wicked Witch’ perhaps…

Today he is fourteen and in full flow with being a teenager: he kicks against everything I (and we) stand for, flips constantly between being heartbreaking charm and the foulest moods and comments.

When the Tempests of the Teenage years hit our family, I secretly bought a book. It is called “Get Out Of My Life ; But First Drive Me and Alex To Town”:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Get-Out-My-Life-First/dp/1846680875

A friend recommended it. One day I made the mistake of leaving it out in full view. Our resident teenager was rattled: “You don’t need a book to tell you how to parent me, you are supposed to simply know that!!!” He added: “I read a few chapters and it’s the most stupid book ever!” From that I learned to keep the book tucked away. It is not actually a stupid book at all, it tackles many scenarios faced by parents of teenagers and gives sound advice on ‘dealing with impossible situations’. I recommend this book  – but hush, don’t tell my eldest son please!

I am a shamanic practitioner and teacher. In our house we follow a spiritual perspective on life. I had braced myself for rebellion in the areas of drugs, sex and rock ‘n roll. However, my son found something that rattled me even more profoundly. One of his closest friends is the son of a local evangelical priest and he got invited to church socials. What I did NOT realise (but [probably should have!)  when he first started attending them is that they evolve some Bible Studies and serious  indoctrination at the end. (As in: “Join us or burn in Hell”!) My son comes home full of talk about hell fire, original sin, man’s dominion over animals and so forth. These are all concepts that we have painstakingly kept far from our children’s daily lives.

The most painful (and outrageous!) thing he asked me recently was: “What if I end up burning in Hell because you chose to bring me up the shamanic way?!” If you wish to rattle a shamanic practitioner – that question is a good starting point!

So I am learning big lessons around keeping my cool and how to ‘give teenagers enough rope to hang themselves with’.

Or course I talk to him, at length, about the extreme views they are trying to sell him and I encourage him to explore more enlightened forms of Christianity that allow people to think for themselves. His response was: “They can’t be too extreme, they encourage sex before marriage!”  – Well… thank you for the warning Dear Son, but that is more of an issue for Roman Catholics, because of the Pope….

And so it goes! He has been given a Bible in school and one of those days I half expect him to hit me over the head with it. The day he does I shall sit down and write an alternative book called The Teenage Bible, about how all teenagers badly need a  spiritual toolkit.

As my brother said in a recent phone call (and I think he is right): simply not taking your children to church and saying “I give you freedom darling!” is not actually good enough. We owe it to young people to give them spiritual guidance and a toolkit. If they themselves decide to jettison the toolkit – that is well within their rights, but opting out of giving young people any kinds of spiritual education leaves them kind of ship-wrecked on the storms of life without a life raft.

Amen!

Imelda Almqvist

www.imelda-almqvist-art.com

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

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TATATATA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am serious! Every woman in her forties needs to own one teenage item of clothing. For fun, for laughter, for cheap and instant rejuvenation, to please the Inner Teenager (not to mention spicing things up with the long-suffering husband/boyfriend/girlfriend… Delete where applicable)

What is age anyway? Someone was telling me recently that even physically speaking you are only ever as old as you think you are, something to do with ‘brain chemistry’. So… think YOUNG! Buy yourself some criminally short skirts or rainbow tights or ridiculously high heels that make you feel like a human sky scraper.

In some book I was reading recently I came across a reference to ‘all women in their thirties  needing to wear their hair short  (as ‘long hair is only for young girls’ apparently – I think this book was written in the 1950s …) I have come across the same advice to all women in their forties: go for a sensible haircut, so people will take you seriously and you ‘don’t look like your own teenage daughter’. Well as I do not have a daughter… there is nothing stopping me then…. My teenage son thinks I look embarrassing no matter what I wear!

Right! Let’s violate those silly rules! I have very long hair and I fully intend to wear the skirt I couldn’t resist buying this morning (see photograph), though maybe not on the ‘ rainy school run’ this afternoon…

Someone once told me that I “have the dress sense of Pippi Longstocking”. I decided to take that as A COMPLIMENT! Now I will take things one step further and Dance with my Inner Pippi. The following article gives some suggestions for dressing as Pippi:

http://www.theguardian.com/childrens-books-site/2014/feb/03/world-book-day-costumes-for-girls

Do you own one teenage article of clothing? Can I see a picture please?!!

And who is interested in a fancy dress party with Teenage Theme soon?! 

Imelda Almqvist

www.imelda-almqvist-art.com

www.shaman-healer-painter.co.uk