Living WildDr Marion Rose
Dr Marion Rose
Mullumbimby, NSW, AUS
Creative Business Mentor
That love is a radical act
Changing the way we treat ourselves and our children
Are you on the train, doing chores, or are your eyes just too tired to read? Settle in, get comfy and listen to the interview being read to you!
I then had a coveted one-on-one Skype consultation with Marion last year to learn how to support my toddler’s big feelings, and followed that up with starting Marion’s incredible Love Being a Mother course.
And my life changed.
The Love Being a Mother course showed me that my own passions and needs were not only important, they were critical to my ongoing success as a mother.
Marion Rose is an independent mum who home schools her two children, plus runs a successful business nurturing women, parents, children and entrepreneurs. I see her as a role model not just for independent mums, but for all women.
Marion is a successful entrepreneur and an awesome mum who legitimately loves her life. She role models how to thrive on her own terms outside of the prescription of what women should be, while bringing all of herself to the party – Marion showers all her emotions, feelings and passions with unconditional love.
We talked about loving limits, mirroring, her Inner Loving Crew, and of course, that aerial icon, Jonathan Livingston Seagull.
I’m sure that all human beings need it, but because I’m a woman and not a man, I’m sharing my own journey as authentically as I can, in the hope and desire that my journey can inspire, encourage and support other women. It’s my passion – that a woman can learn how to love herself more, get free from the guilt, follow her passion and really ramp up her self-compassion, so that she can be the mother, woman and person that she was born to be.
Do you think mothers and women in general put their own needs last?
It’s not just mothers, but when women do become mothers, there are some particular culturally based needs that can come up. That might look like not having needs, along with the whole guilt/judgment thing about doing the things that she loves. These can be really tricky which is why I created the Love Being a Mother course.
It’s really why I’m here, and why so many other women are here, to help shift that around. As mothers, if our needs are last on the list, very soon we are going to get empty, resentful and frustrated.
With an empty cup we just can’t be the fullness that we are. We are not going to be the women, partners, mothers, friends and offspring that we really want to be.
Can you explain Loving Limits and why it’s so important for all women?
Much of my learning has come out of all my parenting work, and Loving Limits as I see it, is the integration of Masculine and Feminine.
When we are more in the Feminine, we are more in the flow, which is so beautiful, but when we are there, we can also ignore our own needs. We can stay on Netflix till 11pm and get tired and let things drop. Whereas the Masculine, is about the forwards movement, the action and the force. To me Loving Limits includes both – the Feminine Love and Masculine Will.
Say I find myself scrolling YouTube at 9.30pm and I really know I want to go to bed because I’m tired, and I’m not going to be able to be who I want to be the next day, it’s about simply saying, “I’m not going to let myself do that.”
So the limit is not harsh – that’s where it’s loving – there’s no judgement, no shame, no blame, no guilt. It’s really coming out of a true inner self-love, because I know I really want to care for myself.
I just love Loving Limits. They are the best things ever, for women in particular and I use Loving Limits all the time.
For example, I might have self-judgment about my parenting, or my kids and their future lives because of something that is happening in the moment. I really don’t want to go down any of those thought-forms, because I know I’m going to be disconnected and frustrated and it’s not going to go well. So I set a Loving Limit. I say, “I am just not going to believe that. I am not willing to go there. I am not willing to get stressed out about it.”
We often look to the outside world to give us validation or support when we want to try something new. And yet, through your Inner Loving Presence Process, I’ve come to realise that everything we need is actually inside of us. How did you get to this understanding and how does your Inner Loving Crew work for you?
The inner loving crew came about as an integration of all the training I’ve done – as a psychotherapist through my 20s, Aware Parenting, Non-Violent Communication, and Field Training. It really came to me; that our internal dialogue and the judgements that we have going on all the time, often start out as quite unconscious.
We don’t come into the world with judgement. The Self isn’t against itself, the Self is for itself.
Any time we are judging, or feeling guilty, with the shoulding and the having to – that is not us – it’s just things we have learned and we have internalised from other people. So I developed this Inner Loving Presence Process which is about developing our relationships with our Inner Loving Crew instead of the things we internalise.
Our Inner Loving Mother is really our relationship with our feelings usually, and how compassionate we are with ourselves, our bodies and our needs. We are internalising what our historical mother did to us – and complete compassion for her because she could only do what she had internalised with her own parents and culture – but we can change that. We can learn to listen to our needs and value them and learn to give unconditional love to every single thought and emotion that we have. We can learn to rest when we are tired, we can learn to love our bodies.
All these things are really tangible dialogue – we can replace the Old and What we’ve learned, with the New and How we want to be.
What I love about this is that it’s actually doable because I’ve done it. I went from being the most filled with guilt, shame and inner-judgement person I know, to now where I never feel guilty and I rarely entertain self-judgement. It’s just so much more wonderful – any thought or feeling that comes up, or anything I’m doing as a mum is unconditional love for that and that really comes from my Inner Loving Mother.
Each of the Loving Crew has a different quality, and naturally it’s different for every person – my Inner Loving Mother will look different to yours. You can have an Inner Loving Dog, Inner Loving Horse – whoever you want. You get to choose!
My Inner Loving Father for me sets loving limits around self-care. He is also the one who encourages me. For example, when I’m putting something out into the world, he says:
“You can do it! I’m here, I’m right beside you! I love it. Go for it! I’ll protect you – I’ll protect you from getting hurt this time.”
Then there is the Inner Best Friend, and she is there for when I’m looking for validation in the outside world. I noticed recently that I put out a video for a new course and it had 400 views, and I went into old feelings, old pain around “Oh no, people don’t like me”. But it was just for a short time because I noticed it and then my Inner Best Friend can say; “You know Marion, I think you are so fantastic! Yes, I know you’d love to have 10,000 views but at the moment it’s 493. I think you are amazing, you are incredible, you just rock!” My Inner Loving Best Friend is about 14 – she’s all about being cool, about rocking it, she swears a lot and she is just so celebratory! It’s so nice!
And then there’s my Inner Beloved and he’s so much about sexuality and sensuality. He is also there to support my purpose and meaning. He is standing firm with me.
My Inner Loving Crew are there to support me with whatever comes up in that entrepreneurial journey; whether it’s about working too hard, staying up too late, or being on the screen too much which is what I used to do, and would just push through.
But my Inner Loving Crew won’t let me do that anymore.
They say “Marion, just extend it for a few days. Hang out with your kids, go to the beach!” and all in a very loving way. They say, “No way are we going to do that anymore”. They are all so cool, my Inner Loving Crew!
The more that validation comes from within, people sometimes worry, “If I’m going to give this to myself, will that give the impression that I’m so independent that people think I don’t need validation and therefore not give it to me?”
I’ve found exactly the opposite to be true. When we don’t give it to ourselves, we are actually pushing it away externally without being aware of it.
I find the more I have these relationships with my Inner loving crew, the more I get to experience that on the outside – the more love I receive, the more compassion I receive and the more encouragement I receive because I’m willing to give it to myself.
(Laughing) That’s so amazing! I think I’m going to have to work on my Inner Loving Best Friend!
What do you think your Inner Loving Best Friend would look like?
Well, I’m loving the idea of a fun 14 year old too because I didn’t love my early teens!
She’s a bridge to those teenage parts of us that have had a hard time. She can go back with you and help you heal all those memories of being teased, not being included, treated harshly, all the shaming, all the judgments. She can come back and hear us. She can say “I hear you’re upset. I love you, I think you’re wonderful. And you know what, in the future when you grow up, you’re going to have so many people that you resonate with”.
I’ve been taught not to cry – harmful statements like Big Girls Don’t Cry, and later my mother used to say Women Cry to Manipulate Men. What guidance do you have for women who are learning how to love all of their emotions?
Find one other person who is doing this too, or is a little further along and has acknowledged a few more emotions in herself. A woman who you can laugh with, cry with, be angry with, be excited with, plus all the other amazing feelings that we have.
There is nothing like being around people who can mirror us, who can listen to us cry without trying to fix it or give us a coffee or a champagne. Sure, maybe afterwards, but while we are crying, to actually be comfortable to be present with those feelings and emotions.
You could also read books, or watch sad movies – finding some place where your sadness can be totally loved and accepted. This will help how you internalize it for yourself so you can get more and more comfortable. We can all learn to cry, and to gradually love all of us.
We are still looking for this mirroring from the outside – because the first time round we didn’t get it from our parents, who grew up in the culture they did. They were never mirrored in their sadness so they couldn’t be in their own sadness or in ours.
Also doing the process of going back to talk to that part of you that heard that phrase. How was it to hear “Women only cry to manipulate men?”
What did you think? What did you feel?
What did you need? What would you have loved to have said?
What is the response you would have liked to have heard?
We can go back and heal these places where we learnt these really painful things. These things aren’t fixed in stone.
In your Love Being a Mother course, you say that we literally have the ability to change the world by the way we are with our children. The history of parenting shows that with each development in the way women are treated, comes a change in the way mothers treat their children. Can you talk more about that?
I’d done all these years of training plus my own therapy and then I become a new mum – and I still had so much judgment because I was still judging myself and what other mothers were doing. As I became more self-compassionate, I also became more compassionate about other people.
I realized that what we are doing as mothers, it’s only what we are doing to ourselves.
It comes down to how much we can be with ourselves, how we can love ourselves.
So if you are out on the street, and you see a mother shouting at a child, or hitting a child, or sending the child away, she is doing the same with her own feelings and her own child-self.
The more we can listen to our feelings and our needs, the more we can follow our passions and embrace ourselves, the more capacity we have to be with who our children really are, and be with more of their feelings, thoughts and behaviours.
So many women I know have a challenging relationship with their mother. What are your thoughts on why this is?
Even in the short amount of time since we were children, the culture has changed so much. Our mums were doing the best they could and most of them probably weren’t able to hear a lot of our feelings. We still have so many unexpressed feelings and so every time we see our mums now, she might do one little thing that reminds us of when we were 3 years old, trying to have a big cry and she was trying to give us a cake or sending us to our room.
Those feelings are coming up now to be heard – that’s how we are designed to be, there is nothing wrong with us – whatever is coming up is coming up to be heard and healed. So when I’m feeling so frustrated with my mum I ask myself, “What does this remind me of?” I go back to that time and really listen to that 2 year old, 7 year old or 15 year old. I let her say what she needs to say and give her what she needs to be heard.
Basically by letting these things be heard, we can actually heal what’s in our past so that there is less and less coming up in the present with our mums.
Of course we want our mums to be able give us unconditional love, to be able to hear our pain without hearing it as a judgement on her or getting upset herself. Most mothers aren’t really able to listen unless they have gone on their own inner journey. She is not able to give us empathy because she is not able to give it to herself yet. They are not able to hear the pain from our childhood because they are still judging themselves, and have their own guilt, shame and self-blame for what they did.
What I love is the more we shift from our own past, and do this inner work with a Therapist or with an Empathy Buddy, the more it frees up things with our mums in the here and now. I’ve spoken to a lot of women who say “I’ve done this inner work and then my mum has actually been able to hear me in a different way”.
We are so inter-related, with our mums, with our kids, with everyone – and so when we shift, it allows other shifts to happen.
Speaking of inter relatedness, I saw a post on Instagram recently where you were talking about going shopping and everything kept matching your dress. Can you talk to me more about what synchronicity and interconnection means for you?
I believe that we are all interconnected and Life is constantly talking to us. Whatever happens in our day to day life, it’s a communication and it goes both ways. Life is constantly showing us, giving us stuff. It might be that intuitive prompt – like the number plate in front of you just when you are thinking of something, or the big billboard that says Just Do It when you are contemplating doing something. When we are in those times of flow we are available to see it, but it’s happening all the time even if we don’t notice it.
Life is on our side even when painful things come up. Last year I kept having these technical hitches – I had problems with the internet and my car kept breaking down. It kept happening over and over again and no one could fix it.
Life was saying, “We are going to keep bringing you these outer things, because we want you to heal from this inner thing that happened years ago. When you finally heal from this inner thing, you are going to be able to step up, step out, and be more of Your Self. And I know it looks like we are against you and sometimes you want to rally against it and say ‘Not again! My car has broken down again!’ But actually, we are here to help.”
Life really is trying to help and it will keep speaking however it can – through our body, through external events, through our feelings, through our thoughts. It just doesn’t give up – it will keep trying until we hear what we need to hear.
Life always has your back!
Yes! Even when it doesn’t seem like it.
I have a question for you from one of my readers. She had a cesarean with her first son 14 years ago and then a vaginal birth with her second son two years later. She feels like her first son has some behavioural differences from her second son. She also feels like she needs to resolve some of her own feelings around having a c-section. Where do you suggest she start with that healing?
I trust that she is being shown and he will be showing her in really subtle ways. Often when there is stuff coming up, it’s really a metaphor – trying to heal this with her and her with him. She could start by slowing down and listening which is hard. Sometimes we just don’t want to listen, because we know there is some pain there. Slowing down might look like reflecting on that day, going in and connecting with him. Just sitting next to him with no agenda, and following his lead and trusting herself – that she knows the way in.
Whether our kids are 30 or 15 or 1 they want to heal what happened between us and them, and they will keep trying to show us.
I love that. And only she can know what the way in is.
Exactly. And she might say “I don’t know the way in!” So a question that can be really helpful; If you did know what the way in was, what would it be? Sometimes we need to sidestep the part of us that believes that we don’t know.
Meanwhile, he knows exactly the way in. He’ll be showing that same pattern of what actually happened and how it’s showing up in his life now. For example, it might be that he starts something and doesn’t finish it.
For healing to happen for us and our kids, two things need to happen. Firstly, hearing what didn’t get to be heard the first time – I didn’t get to choose when I came out, I was stuck, I felt scared.
Secondly to give what wasn’t given. Let him experience what he didn’t get to experience. Let him find a way to do things in his own time this time.
If we are going back to the past, that’s where healing is for children and for us too – to express what didn’t get to be expressed the first time, and hearing what we didn’t get to hear.
You say on your website that “When I was 9 I read Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach and I loved that he wouldn’t settle with the mundane – he knew there was more to life. And he kept doing what he most loved, and that was to fly.” This is one of my all-time favourite books! How has it influenced your life?
That was the first time I had this soul recognition – sure, it may look like a whole lot of suffering right now but Aha! this is what life is really about!
I believe we are each a unique soul with a special spark that each of us have, and it calls us. And it will keep calling us in unique ways. It could be to run a multi-national business, or make the most beautiful sacred garden – whatever it is, it keeps calling.
And sometimes it can be hard to keep hearing it, and it can be hard for other people to understand. The other seagulls didn’t understand and they kept saying to Jonathan – Why don’t you just settle? Settle! And he tried. He tried to fit in and we all try and fit in too and do what other people say we should do.
But then there is this discontentment, this depression, this flatness, and they are all symptoms of our soul saying “No, don’t settle for less!”
Yes, it’s going to be hard to learn to fly, hard to go higher than you’ve ever gone before, and it’s going to be so painful for your wings sometimes because you don’t know how to do it yet. And you’re sometimes going to be scared that you’re going to plummet to your death.
But it’s the most worthwhile thing when we are following our heart and doing what we are here to do. Then, there is nothing else to do. We can survive on air when we are following our passion!
Forget about the treadmill. Believe you can fly!
Yes! Because when you believe you can fly, I don’t know about you, but I get up in the morning, and sure, there are things to do that aren’t so enjoyable, but I’m so grateful to be here doing what I’m doing and I love it so much.
Yes, sometimes it’s hard and it’s challenging and I come across all these old sweet spots. But I wouldn’t do anything else for the world.
Marion, if you were in a position to lead a group of women, to lead them into a life more wild, a life more feminine, what would your battle cry be?
Hang out with at least one other woman who gets you, who resonates, who has similar passions, and from there, getting a group of women! Oh my god – So powerful! And keep loving each other. I think that love is a radical act – if everyone went out and said “I’m going to be loved today”, there would be no war. In my groups we create this community where love is the foundation, and then when everyone starts giving unconditional love to each other it magnifies and intensifies and it’s just so cool!
And dance more! Say yes to what you really long for. Say yes to whatever it is that you don’t even let yourself know that you are longing for! Say yes to eating what you want to eat, wearing clothes you love, hanging out with who you want to hang out with and reading what you want to read. It really comes down to this very basic level, while also setting loving limits with self judgement, or “What will people think?”
To be more wild and be more free, let’s be more like kids and live a life more juicy!
And if you feel called to welcome more love and compassion into your life, I invite you to visit Marion’s course pages:
Respond Lovingly to your Calling
Love Being a Mother
Love Being a Woman
Inner Loving Presence Process
Inner Loving Presence Process for Entrepreneurs
Create a Course
Kids, Screens and Aware Parenting Course
Sound Sleep and Secure Attachment With Aware Parenting
Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. This means that if you choose to buy a product or service via the link, I may earn a commission. This helps me continue to write about the inspiring women I meet and to tell their stories about living a life more wild, a life more feminine. These are the stories that help us all to grow. Thank you so much for your support.
I need to hear more stories about strong women leading beauty-filled and spiritual lives, and so I created Empress Crow and Rabbit. It’s a forum to showcase the inspirational stories of women in uniquely feminine careers. It's also a bridge between what we think we know and what we feel is right. Thank you for joining me – let’s all learn, grow and celebrate the feminine together.
Photo credit: Lucy Spartalis