The Boat And The Breeze


The Boat and the Breeze

The night closed in. Heavy dark clouds cloaking the stars. A little boat was trying to cross a choppy sea. Being buffeted from left and right. Its tiny wooded heart beating so fast she thought it would splinter.

The little boat was so afraid and all alone.

The little boat couldn’t find her heading, tiered and confused.

The force of the ocean pounding down on her deck, she thought she would break.

Her compass was spinning …She didn’t know which way was up down right or left. The little boat lost at sea. She tried to raise her sails. Each time losing faith in her self as they became less and less effective.

The little boat was bailing out water every minute.

How long could she keep it up. How long could she stay afloat.

The little boat panicking the heading wasn’t clear …

The little boat knew her tiny wooden heart had a big part in her direction. If only she could align it with her compass.

She felt so alone, her tiny hull shivering against the cold water.

Rudderless out at sea with no true direction.

The little boat would not last long. She knew it.

The little boat toiled away under the dark night sky. Yawing from side to side fighting for every meter she gained.

The little boat thought how can a tiny boat cross an ocean.

I need direction, I’m losing hope. I don’t understand how I fit in this overwhelming sea.

The little boats heart was splintering ….No she pleaded with herself, don’t I will have a hole. I will sink!

The little boat was about to take her sails down when she felt it. A gentle breeze began to lift her. She felt it all around her.

The breeze spoke “the universe has you.”

“Trust the momentum, embrace the challenges look how far you have come.”

The little boat felt the breeze it was warm against the dark night. It felt safe but still the little boat resisted.

The little boat spoke as she pulled her sails in tight. “What if I go the wrong way?’

The gentle breeze shifted again. It whispered to the little boat “let your compass settle, let go. Your course will appear.”

The little boat thought for a moment and with all the momentum she could muster let out her beautiful sail. It was as bright as the moon now glistening in the clear night sky.

I have the wind in my sails the little boat thought.

The little boat spoke to the breeze. “I am scared, these big waves keep coming.” The little boat didn’t like to admit she felt scared.

The breeze could feel the little boat was unsure ‘I will keep you true, I will right you in a storm. I will fill your sails. I will help you cross the ocean.

The little boat was no longer fighting the waves. The little boat was making headway as the breeze danced around her.

The little boat began to notice the stars, the moon, its beautiful she said to the breeze.

The breeze asked have you noticed you reflection at last? ….

the little boat staled, “how”?

“The beauty you see in the world is a mirror of all you have inside you” The breeze still dancing inside of every word.

The little boat could not understand …they moved slowly under the night sky. “I am tiered, I have not slept” the little boat said.

“Have the sleep you need” …Your heading will be true when you wake up the breeze responded.

The little boat heard one word, dancing like silk on the wind as she drifted off to sleep.


The little boat woke to see the night sky stretching out ahead. She could not feel the breeze.

The little boat thought of the rough sea she had crossed. She was now some where different. I had been brave. She thought to herself.

The little boat allowed her self to stop.

Trust she thought.

The breeze was no where to be felt. The little boat now able to take in the view…wondered what she could do until the breeze returned.

I will clear deck, she began tiding her lines and making sure her sails where in good order. I have time whilst I’m here. She thought. I will charge my batteries. I can use my radio to tell the world I’m out in the big ocean.

The little boat looked to the horizon. A new set of stars had appeared. They where shining brightly, precious jewels in the sky.

The little boat was transfixed. I am somewhere different I must have travelled thousands of miles. I am in a different ocean. The stars shone brighter for the little boat.

These are my friends the little boat thought. These new stars will help me set my heading!

I can follow them.

The little boats wooden heart filled with joy and love. She wasn’t alone lost at sea. She could find her way.

The little boat looked on as the stars the sparkled back.

The little boat missed the breeze. Where could the breeze have danced off to. You can go anywhere when you are a breeze. The little boat thought. How wonderful it must be.

The little boat felt a change the energy coursing thought out the water. The little boat could sea a huge wave building being her.

Oh no this will capsize me its to big, its to powerful. I will fail. She began to think.

The Ocean spoke for the first time. To the little boat.

” Intention is everything.”

The little boat had to act fast, the wave was coming …

How will I set my heading.. The little boat pushed with all her might. she had not realised her anchor had been dragging in the water it slopped over board unshackling from the little boat …

She was set free..

The momentum began to build the little boat could finally surf the big waves.

The little boat having fun playing on the glistening surface. Carving and dancing on the wave..

The little boat longed for the breeze to come and dance too.

The little boats heart was splintering what can I do she thought.

The ocean began to speak.

” The breeze will change, she is evolving each time becoming something more spectacular”.

“She will become the greatest guide you have ever seen”.

The little boat was amused, the ocean is talking to me she thought.

The little boat now feeling braver said ‘you are so big and I am so small, how can I make a difference”?

The ocean quiet for a moment letting the stars sparkle off her surface.

The little boat was dazzled .

“What difference do you want to make?”

The little boat thought for a second.

“I want to show the world what a little, rudderless, boat with broken compass can do”

Lots of other little boats had appeared whilst she had been talking with the ocean.

Each was beautiful in its own way. Sails of all different colours, magnificent carved wooden hulls. Each was unique. Each was on her own journey.

The little boat thought of the breeze. How could she transform? What would she become? What was more beautiful than a force of nature as your guide?

The little boat looked out to the horizon. The ocean stretching into the deep night.

The water beneath her became charged….energy surging and pulsing out to the ocean floor.

The little boat spoke courageously for the first time.

“show me”

A magnificent green neon run way jettisoned out from beneath her running to the horizon, moving at the speed of light .

It danced through and with the ocean. Light and colour flashing everywhere.

The voice she knew was back .


The little boats tiny heart soared.

The ocean had been lit up, the stars shone their brightest. All the little boats moved with the forces around them.

The majestic powerful ocean and the beautiful  luminous guide captivating the little boats as they moved as one.

The little boat thought I’m ready for an adventure.

The End x





When you cant take anymore…

When you c

I know you are out there …Fighting the big fight …The fight with Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Terror.

The fight with yourself. The fight with your mind. The fight with your history. The fight with your experiences.

The fight with all the shit they told you. The fight with the labels they gave you.

The fight with not knowing where you fit in the world. The fight to belong somewhere anywhere.

The fight to hide the torturous things you have endured. The fight to be seen, noticed and heard.

The fight to be respected and understood. The fight to be who you truly are.

I know you are out there.

I know you are feeling the endless exhaustion ebbing in and out of your body like the tides of the oceans.

I know you a feeling the fear in the nights and the emptiness in the days. I know you are out there.

It can be hard, so damn hard.

I know you are asking why me? Why am I being punished? Why is this happening to me?

I know you are out there.

I KNOW you are saying I want live. I want to fight for my life.

I know you are saying I survive.

I rise up.

I shine brighter than an exploding star.

I ignite my soul. I command all my strength. All my love. Every last part of me.

I Fight.

I am a force of nature, I am unstoppable. I am the flood, I am the warm sunrise. I am the beauty in stars. I am the power in the river. I am the freedom on the wind.

I am incredible.

The Imperfect Perfect Coffee..

Today I broke a habit, smashed it like Wonder Woman breaking a rifle across her back. I left the house with out my phone.
The chorus of gremlins began singing in my head, you can’t drive your car without having your phone! What if something happens? What if nursery call?
But here I was leaving the house with out it. “I don’t need it” I said as I marched out of the front door.
We set of to nursery and then on to ‘jobs’. Once Tilly and I had finished we decided we would reward ourselves with a coffee and cake stop.
We did the usual toilet first drills. I only just managed to stop Tilly breaking out while I was mid flow. Thankfully on this occasion the allure of the sink at toddler hight kept her entertained… Phew!
Amazingly we didn’t have to wait today. The Get Served Quick Gods where looking down  kindly on us.
I went through the auto pilot order, I remembered myself and made a point of using the barristers name. Its nice to be noticed right? He flashed me a huge smile back.
I asked for the drink I wanted, having succumb to the amazing looking coffee on the board. “Would you like cream with that”?
“William you are killing me” I said laughing.
William now having been noticed twice. Realising he was not just a human check out started laughing too.
Normally I would decline…….But not today………..Today I was surrendering. Today I was going to embrace the moment…
I was phone free after all.
In my head I was saying YES I want the cream.
YES I want it in all the Violet Beauegrade ways possible, full on spoilt child, I want IT. 
YES! I want the glorious mountain of cream on my coffee.
I deseve it.
I was all ready imagining that cup of magnificent coffee topped with  whipped cream sitting steaming in front of me. Decorated in a glistening sugary drizzle screaming DRINK ME!!!!
Today I was unashamedly having christmas in a mug.
What I actually said was “Can I have one of those marshmallow things and a baby chino please”.
William happily obliged his whole body smiling as he went.
We found a safe spot to occupy. I was set on not interfering with anyone else’s coffee moment. I then set to the Mummy, toddler chess game of moving and shuffling stuff around the table.
As we settled in, I handed Tilly the sugary marshmallow sword. Her eyes widened to plates, she embraced it with glee.
I could see the excitement radiating out of her as she clamped her toddler jaws around what looked to me like a rainbow coloured unicorn poo on a stick.
As gooey marshmallow oozed out of the sides of her mouth. I watched in amazement at how committed she was to embracing the whole moment completely.
I realised I was totally focussed on my daughter, watching her delight in devouring this sugary treat.
She put down her half eaten marshmallow pop. Picked up her cup and said ‘cheers Mummy’.
I thought my God I love this kid so much….My heart swelled to ten times the size.
This tiny tot knows how to be in the moment.
How to embrace the small things.
How to show gratitude and celebrate.
Who is teaching who?
I raised my mug “cheers Tills” as she clinked her paper cup against mine… 
Both of us revealing in our coffee morning.
We began the game of doing cheers for everything. Tilly squealing with delight every time our cups bumped each other.
All of a sudden I noticed something happening around us. I could feel the eyes. 
People had put down their phones and stopped typing, now watching us, someone went as far as toasting us back with their steaming hot brew.
Our fun had been infectious and others where now joining in with our moment of joy!
As Tills went back to her marshmallow it got me thinking. I would have missed all of that if I had brought my phone out.
As she now enjoys her well earned sugar high, and a joyful journey into a magical dreamscape.
I realised my two year old taught me about being present. What it means to live in the moment.
The habit of having my phone with me is well and truly broken.
The cost is far to high.
No more sleepwalking through life.

The Worst Meme Ever! Happy Hug a Spider Day.

The Worst Meme Ever! Happy Hug a Spider Day. I can see your faces now.
Hell No! Are you MAD? “F that Mand.” I know, that’s what I thought too.

A few days ago I met a spider. I had done my ‘meditation’ AKA Nicola says I should. I am actually getting pretty ninja at going all zen.
Feeling electric but calm, I wandered into the bathroom. Reached in turned on the shower and pulled back the curtain.
I came face to face with this eight legged beast, screaming up the side of the bath straight towards me. I went from Zen warrior princess calm to eye popping, shit your pants, fuck I’m going to die mode.
WHOOSH ….Adrenaline pumping through my body ….HELLO… Fear!
I mean the way I reacted as I pulled back that curtain. You would think I had come face to face with the Night King and the Army of the Dead.
I was the one who was frozen.I was ready to scream for help, send and up the bat signal…My trusty dyson no use in that bathroom…damn it rendered weaponless.
And then something happened ….something different.
I acknowledged my fear.
Hello you fucker what are you doing here? I was talking to the feeling in my body…It was gripping me motionless routed to the spot.
I thought ok this is a normal response …its gong to pass.
Every thing I know about fear told me this was normal.
I had shown myself compassion and said its ok. What happened next I am still some what recovering from.
I realised Pricilla was not charging at me!! Yes I named her.
She was desperately trying to save herself. Mirroring the very fear and terror I was experiencing. We were in this moment together. Me and the Spider Queen.
My inner Steve Erwin kicked into gear “come on mate, shes a beaaaut, SAVE her.”
Acting with purpose and intention that only a short sharp shot of adrenaline can give you.
I had reached for a sponge and loaded Pricilla the queen of shower scaring onto it.
Pricilla climbed aboard the spider life raft and took her recuse from the torrent of water she was trying to escape.
As brave, compassionate and courageous I was feeling even I have my chivalrous limits.
Out of the window she went ….
Hooray all hail Amanda the brave.
On reflection I recognised that Pricilla had taught me a big lesson.
Everyone and everything feels fear, from giant spider beasts to full grown wonder Mums.
Its ok.
It will pass.
Especially if Pricilla is flying on a web of string out of the bathroom window.
Amanda x

Emotional 1st Aid…Why you should use it.


Today I found myself thinking on my feet. I had to put something together. This was an actual emergency. It required a fast and appropriate response. A solution that would one hundred percent deliver what was in need.

Having received a message letting me know a meeting needed to be cancelled. The person meeting with me had been in a car accident. I had been given reassurances that everything was fine with them.

Now after I had got past my own shock, I needed to make them feel as safe as possible. I was not about to add to this persons experience any further. That was simple. A quick response saying ‘don’t for a second think about me we will catch up another time, thank goodness you are ok.’ I then received a message with further details about the days events.

I never ever take for granted my interactions with anyone. I might have taken my medic badge off years ago but my experience has taught me to always use this next step.

Assess the situation. Now I don’t know this person well, we have spoken twice. We where not face to face. I knew she had sustained zero injuries. But yet alarm bells were ringing in my head. Why?

Because I know if incidents are not processed by the subconscious mind. It can cause a living nightmare for a person quite literally. I’m getting all doom and gloomy here. And there is no need really.

As the solution is simple. My next message contained what I like to call Emotional 1st Aid. When you cut or bang yourself hard enough a pretty clear bat signal goes up that something needs to be done. Be it shove a plaster on it or get some ice. And the same is true of a reactionary moment that has seriously fired up our fight, flight or fright response (or the triple ‘F’ response). For example a pretty extreme near miss in a car. In this case it was not the drivers fault.

Experience of how we move past trauma, has taught me. Individuals must absolutely feel empowered to make decisions. That not only move them to a place of safety physically but also emotionally hours or even days later.

This is how to kick start that process.

Emotional 1st Aid has three components

Talk about the incident with someone you trust will listen to you, no judging shaming or fixing …just good solid listening.

If there is no one that can fill that sacred space for you right now. Write everything down, everything that happened, everything you felt, shock, anger, fear the lot … This is for your eyes only so go to town. Get it out and on paper. If necessary write an alternate ending one that provides your mind with a safe and helpful solution.

‘what we think we believe‘

Practice some sort of gratitude exercise later in the day to put some balance back in your day. Think of 5 things you are grateful for, write them down.

In two weeks time check in with yourself, make sure you have moved past this incident in a way that is suitable for you.

If it is still sitting with you in anyway that doesn’t fit right with you. Talk to someone you trust about it.

Remember this is Emotional 1st Aid, it is not designed to be a solution to a big enormous life event. But it would alert you to get help if you took these steps.

Ultimately I know it helps.


The First Breakthrough

I hadn’t slept I had woken up out of a torturous dream, covered in sweat. The fear rising in my chest building after what I had experienced. This one was worse a new kind of hellish, children this time. Why was this happening, I wracked my brains. Blast victims everywhere hopeless, helpless no one alive, I have to tidy it up. I was stood next to my bed trying to work out what next. ‘I’m awake I’m awake’ its not real, it felt so real. I spent the next two days confirming it wasn’t real my whole body carrying the tension of a medic on high alert. Telling myself it couldn’t be real looking for any clue in the dream to distguish it from reality. Finally I settled on the sink being in the wrong place. That evening I felt the fear closing in again. I begged my mind not to take me back. My stomach in knots so tight I couldn’t eat. The thought of sleeping now seeped in dread and terror. I prayed it would not reapeat…

I didn’t think I had PTSD. I knew I was a shadow of myself. I put it down to fatigue of being a parent. Sleepless nights and running around after energy abundant small children. Everyone has dreams like that if they’ve been to places like that right? It wasn’t until I found myself participating in a training course. I realised I was not only living with PTSD. I was in a full blown fight with myself and I wasn’t winning. I was hardly surviving. I never thought I would be free of the dreams and nightmares that plagued my mind when ever I became stressed. The faces, I would see from my time in Afghanistan. I had accepted that this was how it was. When my children started to appear in those dreams I plummeted to a whole new level of fear. Something had to change. I still didn’t recognise it as PTSD. So many others had been through so much more, worse tours, pain, injury. How could I have PTSD? Not only did I have it. I had it in all its brutality. To add fuel to a well stoked fire I was battling the shame of being a child of someone who had committed suicide. Not someone, my mum. From the moment I took the phone call my world had been forcefully and painfully torn apart. I never thought I could get over that. The darkness that accompanied it all the not knowing, the pain the triggers more and more of the same but different the anxiety the fear….

 And then 6 years after returning home, six years of being lost..
I discovered this beautiful, gentle process.
The moment when change fluttered in like a feather on a breeze. This was not mindfulness, this was not coaching, this was not meditation. This was none of that. This was action. This was the last time when I spoke any of those words thought any of those thoughts I would ever feel like that again. I was about to change in a way I could not believe, let alone imagine. The moment I experienced it for myself the effect was profound. I had no idea that signing up to become a Cellular Release Therapy practitioner. That participating in the training course would alter my life beyond belief. I couldn’t suppress the undeniable power of the subconscious mind. It was pushing forward the very things I had wanted to keep hidden from the world. It was plain as day, the heightened alertness, the inability to sleep. Avoidance of even my closet friends. The removal of colour from my life everything became grey. The constant feelings of criticism, judgement and fear. The pushing away of the things I loved to do. The self doubt and the withdrawal from wanting to work with people. I had no energy for it. Exhausted inside and out. Caffeine and sugar had become some sort of lifeline. I had hated who I had become I had hated myself. The one piece of myself I had managed to hold onto was the part that took care of and loved my children and my husband. That was the only thing keeping me grounded. Inside I was beating myself up for not being a better parent, mother, wife, practitioner. Shattering myself into a million pieces. My mind was its own prison and my body reflected that. The resilience I had come to rely on in my youth was no where to be seen. The optimism and hopefulness that drove me day after day was lost. I was lost. Everything was about to change, out of no where a sliver of hope. I was sitting on the precipice change or don’t change it was now or never. I grabbed my chance with both hands I was not letting go. I knew this was change the rumble was on and I was ready. Every fibre in my body knew it too. I got a sniff of the powerful, intelligent, funny, loving girl I had once been. I wasn’t lost just misplaced in the very depths of my mind. I couldn’t have known that when I started locking down all the hurt, pain and vulnerability all the feelings that terrified me. That I would lock away the parts of myself that loved life, living and laughing. I would lock away the girl that could take on anything and come out smiling. The minute I began learning from Anne Drucker the minute I began diving into those beautiful transformative sessions. The possibility of a breakthrough was not only real it was limitless. Session after session I dismantled crushed and set myself free from those feelings, beliefs habits and pattens. Every part of me unshackled. I grew beyond measure I found I had more to offer myself than I could have ever imagined. I journeyed to the very limits of my own personal spaces. I walked through my own personal hell I kept going. Once I came out the other side I was greeted with my own brilliance, grace and inner power. I could feel the force of nature I have always been, the wild, care free girl with an unstoppable force and energy. I had been awoken, set free. By the time I had returned home I knew I had to establish a place where others could come to. Where others could reach out to and access the keys to regaining their lives back. This had become about so much more than me.The Breakthrough project was born and is here to stay. 
I now know I will never have to live or feel the way I did ever again.
I am changed.
The possibility for change is real. If I can do it anyone can.
Never let go of hope.
Hold on pain ends.