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How to Know You’re Ready and Ripe


In the summer we travel to our family home in Italy to pick the fruit from the trees.


There’s a satiating sense of richness when I’m absorbed in diving into the lushness of a tree.

I decided to start with the yellow plum tree behind the old stone bread oven.


Quickly I realised that the tree first needed to be rescued from the brambles and the ivy that were suffocating it.


Thick, thorny canes shot straight up between the branches of the plum tree, clawing at my hands. They were adamant about growing toward the light, and in so doing they cast their shadow over the ripe plums that rested on the branches like dusted pearls.


I got most of the brambles out of the way only to discover that an ivy had wrapped itself intricately around the trunk and limbs of the poor plum in a tenacious, sticky grip.


It made me think how similar this is to the way we wrestle our inner gifts from the overgrowth of old habits and limiting beliefs.


When we let things just be without taking care of the well-being of the environment within, we discover that most of our fruits don’t just unravel themselves of their own accord, but are caught in a thorny frustration, the tenacious grip of old habits or a suffocating screen of sticky beliefs.


Often our ripeness is present but covered by the clutter of a neglected pain we’re too afraid to touch because we think its barbs will sting us

Sometimes you’re just not sure whether you’re ripe to heal the mother wound.


It sounds counterintuitive because who wouldn’t want to feel free from the pain left by their relationship with their mother? But the way habits swirl around the limbs of our vision for ourselves asks us to take another approach.


If I had moved quickly between the brambles in order to just get rid of them—as most tend to do with their plans and wishes—I’d just get bruised.


Instead, I had to move gently, and take care of my safety and the safety of the plum fruits and branches.

In the same way, I approach the healing of the mother wound—slowly, gently and safely finding the openings in a woman’s heart and psyche that will give her the permission to reach out with her hand easily and pick scrumptious fruits that can otherwise be just guarded or even forgotten.


I offered a workshop last week that was very emblematic of my approach to healing the mother wound. This is what Sunniva had to say about it:

"I have been to many workshops on and offline and know the feeling too well when my body stays on guard, because I did not feel safe. There have been times when I did not listen to my body and opened up, only to be shamed or even traumatised for my vulnerability.


Soft and Expanded!! that’s how I felt after Shelly‘s online workshop.


Shelly has a true gift and the capacity to create a safe and compassionate space. In only a short time I felt my nervous system relax and felt a connection and compassion with the other women present.

I entered into a new sphere of awareness of my own story and history, I had a feeling of celebration and love for how I have grown.


All thanks to Shelly‘s guidance, wisdom and vulnerability to be purely present with a group of women longing to embrace and heal on a truly authentic and grounded level.


I perceive Shelly as mindful and soft in her presence, not shying to be raw and honest. She has an aura of competence and assertiveness which shines through in her ability to hold and guide a group of women on their healing journey.

Thank you Shelly!!


Sunniva Maria, Naturopath, Catalyst and cacao lover