We gathered on the last quarter moon, a time for seeing the lessons of the previous cycle, for completing projects, planting seeds for the next cycle and tying up loose ends… a wonderful time to make a Medicine Drum!
Eight beautiful women came together, we had tea and treats, we created sacred space and we shared the stories of our birth. We do this because our birth, our first creative act, is an imprint that we carry through our lives. It is how we ‘do’ creativity.
I shared the story of my birth….
My birth was a relatively easy labour, my Mother was alone through most of it, I was born and then separated from her over night… How this plays out in my life is, I find it easy to be creative, I enjoy the process, whether it be dancing, sewing, writing, cooking. I finish quickly, and find there is little self satisfaction, I look for outside recognition, assurance, or very quickly move onto the next thing, leaving my creation behind me.
In understanding this process I have learned to take the time to appreciate my own achievements and creative expressions. It’s always there, the desire to be recognised, but I know it now, it’s an old friend and I tenderly acknowledge her, and give her love.
After we shared our stories the women pulled their Deer hides from the pool and began to make their drums. It is a solitary process, just the woman, her materials and her instructions.
My wonderful assistant Leia and I are there if any questions arise or guidance is required. Like a Midwife at a homebirth, no interference, just being there and holding space for the process to unfold.
It was a beautiful day, the sun shone, the creatures and spirits of this land visited us, and although we were women walking our own paths, we were all together.
Eight drums were born! They are now four days old. We will wait until the new moon to play them, at sunset, where ever we are, drumming together with our deer drum Sisters, calling our intentions for the next cycle through our drums song.
The Process of Making my Drum with Talulah today.
“The instructions are before you – everything you need to know is in those pages, go and make your drum” I hear my Sistar say …I chose my hide from Talulah’s bed bath, or it chose me. It looked so velvety and soft – like the inside of my womb.I set forth with my frame and hide, it was eerily quiet sitting on the green grass of Talulah’s split level back yard. A gorgeous warm, sunny day that threatened to dry out my sinew and moon soaked deer skin.I turned the hide over and turned it over again … inside out it was to be!But I stalled … where do I start? It seemed as if the chatter of nature had stopped talking, stillness had fallen and the world was holding its breath, waiting for the first thread. I was overwhelmed, such simple directions were confusing me – where was halfway in the sinew, I wondered.Confusion spread through my body and I faltered, my nerves crackled … how can I do this?Slowly I started threading the sinew into opposing holes and ever so slowly my confidence returned. I heard the leaves in the trees rustling again and smelt the strong pervasive muskiness of the animal. It felt slippery, stretchy and fragile. I was scared!My threading, twisting, pulling and tightening became assured and a rhythm developed until SNAP! The sinew broke – I was panicked, devastated – what could this mean?Breathe ……. Michelle……. Breathe“Tie the sinew together – a double knot” suggests Talulah.And again I found my rhythm. Threading, twisting, pulling and tightening.Time and time again the sinew snapped and I saw my life’s journey reflected in this animal who gave its life to me. Down, down, down I was drawn by the snap and pulled up again as I repaired the breaks.So much effort to slowly, carefully weave my life into this beautiful drum. I realised no matter what happened my drum would be perfect and it would work. It broke, it was repaired and I loved it.It is completely me: inside out, lovingly made, meticulously cared for and lots of work in the process. For the process made my drum and the process is what I am today.I heard the kookaburra sing and the buzz of the insects shimmered like heat rising off hot ground; and I smelt the animal. I am one of nature’s children.Thank You Talulah for a wonderful workshop.”
A letter from Cecelia
Dear Wonderful and Magical Talulah,
Thank you so much for yesterday. I am so surprised at just how much I loved yesterday’s workshop. Correlating my birthstory and my process was joyous and and I feel a deeper acceptance of who I am.
I wanted to thank you so much for allowing me to be apart of yesterday’s workshop, mothering and caring for my hide. thank you for the effort you put into cutting my sinew. Using the sinew kept me aware and conscious that this was once a living creature, and I kept giving thanks to the animal during my making. It allowed for a respectful deep connection. Thank you so much. You are truly amazing.
My Mother Drum is the first of many to grace my home.
Much love Cecelia Xx