INTRODUCING KATE LEIPER
Kate is a Psychotherapist & Feminine Embodiment Coach & a beloved Teacher for the School of Embodied Arts. We so hope you enjoy her beautiful blog x Jenna
My eldest girl is a firecracker. She takes no prisoners and tells it as she sees it. We learned very early however that her impassioned exterior houses a deeply sensitive and attuned soul.
Now, as she’s about to turn 6 years old, I’ve learned that mothering her is a gift. She shows me how to feel and express with more authenticity every day.
Rewind the clock back to her toddler years, however, and it was an entirely different story.
A story where my shadows became too suffocating to ignore anymore.
Our girl, in all her emotional intensity, non-conformity and clearly stated boundaries, forced me to look in the mirror of my own too much-ness.
In a society that embraces pink wearing, piggy tail bearing 2-year-olds with sweet smiles and obliging demeanors, my feisty babe challenged my inner “good mother” like nothing else.
I remember when she was almost 3 years old and I was pregnant with my second. Back then I was still desperately clutching to the image I’d created of a mother and professional therapist who had it all together.
Because you know – I understood attachment theory. I knew how the brain worked. My clients were mothers. I totally had this shit nailed.
Except, of course, I did not.
I was being triggered left, right and center despite reading every book I could find on how to parent a toddler.
I was in constant battles with my husband around how to “manage” our daughter’s emotional intensity and “deal” with her behavior.
I was experiencing a very uncomfortable pregnancy.
I was trying to get a private practice off the ground.
I was completing a Master’s Degree.
I was harboring a mixed bag of unresolved trauma.
And on top of it all, I was fighting to maintain the facade that not only was I able to juggle it all with ease, but I could also lead, treat and guide other women to do the same.
I was so terrified of learning that I was a terrible mother and therefore a useless therapist, that I continued to look relentlessly to the experts for the magic mothering/business pill that would rescue me.
Conveniently, by searching outside myself I shut down any risk of having to be vulnerable and confront my shame, fear and internal wounds.
I’d been brainwashed into believing I was only worthy if I was perfect.
I’d convinced myself I couldn’t offer any support to women unless I had a wall of framed qualifications and all my ducks in a row.
I was so obsessed with presenting a bright, shiny image that to cope with my sense of failure, I found myself disconnected from my daughter, my husband, and my own heart and soul.
I was terrified that people would catch me out as a fraud.
I didn’t believe I was enough as I was.
Still, I refused to look at my shadows.
Surely a leader was only worthy in the light?
In mid-2017, now with 2 fiery babes to my name, I fell pregnant for the 3rd time.
It was unexpected, and if I’m honest – initially unwanted – at least by me. The shock of this pregnancy (I was still breastfeeding my youngest and my cycle hadn’t returned) was profound.
It challenged all my plans. I had everything mapped out. I was adamant there was no “room” to entertain another period of child-growing and raising.
Little did I know that this divine spirit had found me for a reason.
The reason was not to eventually bless us with a new family member but to guide me back into my body after years of neglecting her needs and dulling her intuition.
This powerful soul stayed the course for 10 weeks, allowing me to surrender and fall into a space of acceptance and excited anticipation for the new chapter ahead.
Just as I’d found my feet as a mother of 3 to be, this little messenger said goodbye.
Their work was done.
The chapter ahead would not entail me birthing and mothering another child, but re-birthing and mothering myself.
It was clear to me then and even clearer to me now that I’d been provided an enormous opportunity for growth.
My shadows were waiting. They were ripe to be known and become a source of wisdom and deep healing for both me and the women I worked with.
This loss was the catalyst I needed to step into the dark.
I was lead to meet my deepest truths. A more soulful understanding and reverence for my daughters. A desire to break down walls in my relationship and cultivate connection and intimacy like I’d never known.
My loss had inspired a new kind of leader in me. A mother leading her family from a space of integrity and authenticity. A feminine leader who embodies all facets of who she is unapologetically. A change-making leader who chooses heart-centered service over mind-focussed ego.
A woman who chooses courage and depth over perfection-seeking and aspiration.
A woman who leads from her shadows.
As I reflect on this loss and the many others I have experienced since I know this much is true…
Motherhood offers a unique portal into the most unexpected corners of our soul. Should we choose to surrender to them, the shadows encountered in the unraveling woman during motherhood are home to the kind of self-inquiry that leads us to a blooming of ‘self’ we have no concept of as the maiden.
Our blooming will be found in the struggles.
The shameful wounds reopened without warning. The rage-fuelled triggers that provoke our most primitive responses. It will be in the numbing out. In the seething resentments and the crippling grief.
Our blooming begins in the shadows.
The murkiest, darkest caverns that motherhood resides.
There you will find yourself if you accept the invitation.
There, you will allow your truth to lead and the lies slip away.
As sunrise comes and dappled light glistens on your petals, you flourish in the light.
Knowing you were planted in the richest of soil, you cherish how far you’ve come.
Like me, you are a flawed woman and an imperfect mother. You are everything you must be to lead in the most potent and transformative ways.
Let us celebrate the shadows and guide us to lead from the belly of feminine truth.
Let us bloom together, as women – as leaders – who rise from the darkness.
If you feel called to dive into your shadows to activate your most authentic expression of self as a woman, mother, lover, and leader, I invite you to schedule a complimentary call with me here.
This is your time, your opportunity to access your deepest desires and the most powerful truth.
ABOUT KATE LEPIER
Kate works with game-changing women who desire a deeper connection to self as a path to authentic expression, with the intent of creating positive global change. Trauma-informed and honoring the interplay of mind, body, and soul, Kate guides women into awakening their multi-faceted feminine magic and owning their brilliance as embodied mothers, lovers and leaders.