These past 6 months have been an incredible time of growth for me. As the saying goes ‘no pain, no gain’…and boy has it been painful and “off the charts” uncomfortable! A lesson I learnt a while back though, is I need to lean into this and not to numb out or fight it, as it is in this bitter-sweet place where the growth takes place.

The ‘who-the-hell-am-I-and-what-next-crisis’ has been building since the first of our three children stepped into adolescence and I began feeling the flutterings of menopause, and oh yes, to add to this I felt so incredibly trapped and frustrated working from home! Oh boy – not a good place and not a good space!

So two months ago, attempting to escape the confines of my suburban reality, I stepped into a shared office space only to have my life overhauled! In my new creative space, I found exactly what I was NOT looking for, but exactly what I needed most – seven inspirational men that have excavated my humanity!

Somehow, within a day of me starting at my new office space, the Universe connected the dots and a group of us – self-employed, freelancers/consultants/ small business owners, had set up a daily, 30 min ‘coaching circle’ where we meet on the fake grass of our roof top office! Such a change of dynamics for me, and totally out of my comfort zone, as I am the one who usually ‘holds’ coaching circles for groups of women and now I was being ‘held’ in one and by a group of men! Was I the rose amongst the thorns or a thorn amongst the roses?

Since then, our daily meetings have become a ritual that I treasure. They provide a space that gives me time to reflect, as well as continuous insights and lessons, a space where we are all 100% vulnerable and authentic, where we challenge, support and hold each other accountable, a space where together we have reflected on gender based violence, celebrated and joked about our different colours, and shared insights of our patchwork beliefs and histories.

The place that two months ago I would have feared to tread, has now become my garden in the sky where I show up fully! Bas, Duncan, Jeremy, Todd, Simon, Steve, and Zaahir, the grass may be fake, but one thing for sure is that in our coaching circles I am neither rose nor thorn – here, each one of us is a magic mushroom!