Moonlight Phoenix has risen

music, feminism, spirituality, words and more

E.D.E.N 2015- Transformation

on February 1, 2015

As regular readers might know for the past year or so I have been a regular member of a local women’s group called Inspiring Women of Southend.

We get together once a month, for sharing, connecting and creativity!

For the second year running the lovely ladies organised the E.D.E.N conference.

Last year I got involved in the organising, but found it a bit much with everything else that was going on at the time and sadly didn’t attend on the day so missed out on the actual event.

This year I decided from the onset that to get too involved would be too much (especially as I’ve been writing a chapter for a book with a deadline)! but I was intrigued and wanted to be involved in some form, luckily for me, founder Adri Ana was kind enough to let me help with simple tasks on the day like setting up, helping with teas and coffees, and helping tidy up, which didn’t involve me having to get too involved with the regular meetings etc about it.

Yesterday was the big day of the conference, it was on the theme of Transformation. I wasn’t too sure how the day was going to go and whether I would really enjoy it or not, but it turned out to be a really fun, uplifting day spent with a lot of amazing, inspiring women, quite a few I’m lucky to have as friends and hopefully there are a few new ones forming too.

My friend Fiona came and picked me up and we got to the church hall where the event was being held so we could start setting up. I helped put up the decorations which were mostly lovingly handmade by the ladies who had a few creative sessions beforehand, that included heart bunting and handmade table decorations. It soon got to 1pm and ladies started to arrive (men were also able to attend but it was still mostly women really).

After a brief hello to each other and teas and coffees consumed we headed into the main hall to kick the day off! After a brief going over the ‘house rules’ etc, Kim Bailey introduced Adri Ana to the stage, who told us a little more about the idea behind Inspiring Women of Southend and her vision.

Afterwards Susan Giles graced the stage in her fabulous purple outfit (we were invited to ‘Dress to Express’) and recited some of her wonderful poetry, including a poem to give us a giggle, to set the day off to a light hearted, happy tone.

The first speech of the day was from Kym Ciftci and was about the power of ‘I am’ and how important the words you say after that phrase are, if you continually label yourself in a negative way, then eventually you’re going to really believe it! To demonstrate how much of this we all do to ourselves, Kym put up on the projector many of the excuses and negative self beliefs we have, and got people to stand up if they had ever said any of that to their selves, by the end of the list, almost everyone in the room was standing. We then had to place our hands on our hearts and say “I am amazing!”

Next up was Jill Poet who did a speech about ‘Your Purpose’ and how we need to discover and then follow our purpose to find who we really are and our true happiness.

Founder of mental health charity ‘Just Listening to You‘ Bernie Bentley was up next and spoke about her amazing charity which she self funded, and also shared some of her inspiring friend’s stories.

There was a brief break before the next speaker who was the fantastic Anna Heim. She gave us a brief rundown of some of the traumatic experiences of her life, and how it broke her down, but she found herself building herself up again and rising like the phoenix from the ashes. It really gives you a sense of perspective when you hear from these women who have had to deal with severe trauma in their lives, that really if they can get back up, and live their dreams, well you certainly can!

The last talk of the day was from Kim Bailey, a life coach about ‘the genie inside’ Again, this was about overcoming tragedy and turning it around to your advantage and discovering YOU can follow your dreams, no matter what anyone else says.

Feeling motivated and ready for some action, the workshops kicked in! The first one was from Rosemary Cunningham where she taught us something called ‘Story Massage’ which was basically the idea of drawing pictures as a massage technique, she showed us ‘weather’ pictures and techniques, and yes it’s very nice! I suggest you give it a go!

After feeling all relaxed but also playful from ‘drawing’ pictures, Susan came back out to really let our playful sides out with a drumming workshops! there were drums, but also rattles, tambourines and all sorts of other instruments, and as Susan and her friend led us, we were soon dancing and making one hell of a merry noise! I’ve done quite a few drumming workshops/circles in the past but I’ve never enjoyed one so much as this one, it was really infectious, and I didn’t really want it to stop!

Then there was the fashion show, with some brave ladies from the audience being dressed up and made up in beautiful African clothes, they all looked amazing!

Then the day started to draw to a close, as the prizes from the day were given out, including for the ‘best badge’ (as we were invited to handmake our badges), thank you’s and pictures taken, and then everyone could just socialise and network before going home.

I came home feeling motivated, inspired and feeling like I’d had some fun!

You can see photos over on the Facebook page taken by the fantastic Steve Lily


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