Author Archives: joanbechtwillette

“Don’t Let Them Take Away Your Light!”


“Don’t let them take away your light” is a very powerful statement, artistically depicted by Audrey PeterPan Dimola “The Rebel Poet of Queens!” When I saw this urban inspiration – I had to spontaneously embrace it and jump in! Luckily, my friend NiirmalDev Mari (extraordinary artist and producer of Empyre Media Studios) caught the magical moment on film!

   Art does that to you! It brings joy and inspiration- like the cycle of life! That magical state was re-remembered in my cells! I always felt that, even as a little girl, that I was not to be “shut down” “toned down” or to follow “the status quo.”  

  I believed in magic, faeries, saints and Angels were lighting the way within me. During the dark times, trying times, playful times, and no turning back times – they were there. The eternal “pilot light of the soul” never extinguishes. Ever.

   Ou culture teaches us to “hide our light under a bushel basket.”  This especially applies to women. Men can strut out their trophies of accomplishment on the field or in the boardroom. Women demur, and “take one for the team” at work, in relationships and in their families.

  Women support others, and rarely take credit for the feats they accomplish on the job or in their family management. This bites. We need to stand up and own our light! We empower our daughters, sisters, friends all around us. 


We are creatrixes at the matrix of society. We hold full time careers, run homes and do community service and shine, seamlessly.

  Let’s get out there and be brave and be trailblazers.  Nobody can shut down the light of our souls.  It is our guiding force. Where do you think your intuition comes from? Or flashes of brilliance? Stoke the fires and don’t let anybody dim your hopes or dreams. They are yours. Carpe diem.

    In my life, with loss of loved ones, career changes, divorce, illness, crippling disappointments and derision – that light led the way. I never gave up hope. I have seen the other side of apocalypse and yes, there is life and light! Our light lights the way. It is our redemption.

   Take a long deep look into your eyes. Find that defiant 10 year old with the indomitable spirit, that is still you. Look at the light in the eyes of her soul and harness that. Go after that job of your dreams, go back to school, find love in all the right places. The path is lit from the light of your soul. 

Take a chance. We’ll do it together!  

Creativity Transforms Lives


   A compelling and heart wrenching  interview on by Jessica Knoll, author of “The Luckiest Girl Alive.”  

This is a true heroine. “She who speaks her truth” through the pain, shame and blame that she endured. Jessica stuffed her feelings with food, as so many of us do. She suffered in silence, as we often do. One of the most powerful statements she did was, “I thought living well was the best revenge, but it isn’t.”  
   We can stuff, dress up, rationalize and somatize trauma. We can run, but we can’t hide. Therapy helps. Friends and family can help. Getting crazy busy helps us forget – air the moment. Only the spiritual salve of healing creativity and open heart sharing in a safe space can heal us.

   It is “the river runs through us” that colors our days and nights into existence. Our health and our relationships are profoundly effected by unexpressed truths and traumas. Creative modalities of music, writing, photography, painting and videography are the perfect places for us to release and redeem our experiences freely – in our own unique modality, time and place.

  Women are natural creatrixes. We give life to projects, relationships and communities. There are worlds of magic behind our eyes and mystics beneath our humble daily gear. 

  Alchemy is afoot – as we heal the wounded hearts of family, pets, friends, community causes…. Picking up the pen, paintbrush, camera, violin, whisk….. is the most powerful healing tool we have in our lives! This is the bedrock principle that The Enchanted Goddess: Literary Creative Arts Community was formed on!

  In my life, I have faced many challenges in career, family, health, traumas, finances and relationships. Some of them, I thought I’d never recover from. When the great pains that were embedded in my soul, that were left unexpressed – they festered. 

  In one year, I retired, moved, had financial challenges, substitute taught in unknown circumstances, my soulmate dog of 16 yrs died, and I ended up in an ambulance with chest pains. Thank God/dess, I just started to embark on my creative journey of writing, joining the SARK community – where I found “joyfull solutions”, doing Open Mic’s and giving wings to my dreams of creative community.

   The doctor asked me,”What experiences from your life are being unexpressed?” “They are wreaking havoc in your body, and will create illness, if you don’t find an outlet to express unresolved issues.”  

   I immediately got on it. I started writing, sharing with trusted friends and in a healing circle. Dr. Christiane Northrup states, “Our biography is not our biology!” I sincerely believe that, I’ve seen it happen in my life. 

   So let’s choose our “wands of creativity” and express our soul’s truths to ourselves and heal our lives, as Louise Hay’s famous book “You Can Heal Your Life” shows us! 

Feminism is Not a Dirty Word



 Women have choices today. To stay or go in marital partnerships. To have a career, a family or both are now viable options. Thanks to the feminist movement.

Young women need to take the pressure off themselves. I wish I knew this a few decades ago. Only 8% of Baby Boomer women went to college back in the day. The prevailing cultural pressure to attain the “Mrs.” Degree was paramount.   

When the “Feminism Wave” hit, young women were expected to carry am MBA & Mrs. Degree concurrently. Having it all – meant doing it all. Accomplishing a full time career and manage a household became all the “de riguer.” 

Young women became overburdened and overwhelmed going decades forward. With the war of the sexes, escalating with the divorce rate tipping over 50%, women are left bereft.

And now at her 8th decade, Gloria sets a course correction for the trajectory of young women going forward today. Explore creativity and find a life that is meaningful and satisfying for you. Don’t rush in where fools dare to go. 

Celebrate your exquisite gifts and hone them. Find your center and ground your values and dreams firmly in your life. Before embarking on a contracted cohabitation journey that produces progeny – find yourself.
Medicated, sleep deprived, overextended in time, finances and emotional duties – she collapses. 

It takes her decades to recoup, regroup and regenerate. There is no stopwatch in our lives. Scrap the timetables and just be YOU!
In my life, I didn’t wake up until I turned fifty. 

A glorious, overwhelming life swept me up like a rip tide. Career, family, divorce, health challenges, community commitments, death and redemption took decades to ride. 

  The next step was reinvention through living life consciously. Shedding the shackles societal expectations of female roles finally! Time for creativity and regenerativity – finally! 
 Young women don’t have to wait decades to do this. Get ahead of the wave and do it now, before  you jump into the deep end of the pool.

The Joy of Skipping 


  Think 3rd grade, on a sunny day. The sun warming your upturned face, with the wind in your hair, as you gleefully skip down your block. I felt like I could fly, when I skipped. I thought anything was possible. I felt invincible. Pure joy emoted from my pores. A path of endless possibilities and dreams coming true, stretched before me.

  Wow! All these powerful and positive memories were unleashed from my long forgotten memory’s DNA, until a few weeks ago! I met a new friend, Kim aka Skipper, and the founder of the revolution!  “When the student is ready, a teacher appears!” My outlook on life cruising in midlife and beyond, will never be the same again!

  From the first tentative attempt “to skip” beyond my 5th decade of life, was interesting.  Kim sent instructions “Step, hop. Step,hop.” And I did and haven’t stopped since!

  I was too self conscious to take on this venture publicly, so I practiced down the long vacant hallways between classes, in the school I teach.  I felt free, young and magical!  Then I found out that there were cameras in the hallways, so I decided to continue skipping – for their viewing pleasure.  I now started skipping with my 3rd grade students down the hall at dismissal time. 

  Skipping has unlocked a treasure trove of long forgotten joyous girlhood memories! I realize that I am still that wild, creative and joyful girl – in present time! It is like the “tapping” revolution- but with your feet! The muscles hold memories in our bodies. Skipping recovers the joy and happiness in our lives – it might just be the antidote to Prozac!

  I am challenging Weight Watchers to include “skipping” on their list of fitness activities!  Skipping is a great workout – it elevates your heartbeat and your spirits at the same time!  I foresee The Enchanted Goddesses having skipping adventures in Astoria Park, this Spring for sure!


Celebrating Wonder Women’s Month


We are ALL Wonder Women! Women accomplish so many feats in so many arenas in our lives. Our families (our heart) takes center stage in all we do, while we navigate the waters of career, relationships, health, community, soul nourishment….

  We encompass the universe – Gaia: Earth Mother in the very fabric of our beings. Our hearts warm the hearths of home and hearts beyond. Our talents and gifts are streams that run through every person and event that crosses our paths. Our spiritual electricity powers every particle and being of breath along our path each day. 
  We are wondrous miraculous beings! We love, work, cook, console, clean, create, lead, designate, collaborate – all in a single breath. Our power is undeniable. It is up to us to recognize it and suit up. No one else is responsible for our peace or happiness.
  In my life, I felt like men had all the power and that females were meant to follow their lead. My divine feminine wisdom rattled that cage, since I was 7 years old. I knew it was b.s. I looked to warrior women in history – Queens, Saints, Inventors, Goddesses and Wise Women through the ages. 
  They marched to “the beat of their own drum.” That worked for me – to see the rumbling whispers of my soul – spring out onto the pages in books and journals. It fueled me and validated my sacred knowings, planting seeds in my soul.
  Fast forward decades later, it has been my life’s mission to bring the awakening of the divine feminine – that has been knocking on all of our doors for decades! By stepping into my Goddess or Wonder Woman self – I consciously acknowledge and incorporate all the glorious aspects of my female being! Why don’t you ALL join me!!!

Succulent Wild Love…


  Now I have your attention! How do we find love? Where do we find the guts? How do we recover from loss of love? Can you trust again? Is true love possible? All these questions and more, are joyfully answered in “Succulent Wild Love!” 

  I have been following this fierce female (SARK) for decades, and her journey speaks to millions of women and men around the world.  Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy met her soulmate, Dr. John Waddell on a “Law of Attraction” cruise. 

  No, you can’t make this up! Susan recounts her prelude to the cruise and their meeting in the book, in a beguiling and open hearted way. At midlife, a “soulfully single” and a “widower” meet. John says to her, “I am uniquely qualified to adore you.” And that was the beginning of their love journey together! 

  Susan and John went hand in hand, to write a book about their journey, in a fresh and fun way! Joyful solutions are discussed, for “bumps in the road” or to simple compromises. There are fun “Awareness Practice” excercises at the end of each chapter. 

  The typography is in color and there are lots of colorful original drawings, photographs and colorful interviews of couples and soulful singles. And did I tell you, there is a “queen sized bunk bed” in their story? Think 20 year olds on a camping trip!

  I was delightfully entertained and mesmerized by this book, which is about a tender hearted topic of love and partnership. It was eloquent, poignant, open hearted and funny! 

  This book in format, is unlike any book I know, on relationships and love. It is fresh and creative in delivering the message of self love, trust and being joyfully single or coupled. 

  I would recommend this book to all my friends and those who are ready for “the grand adventure of love.” I laughed and cried, while reading this book. Run out and get it! Tell me what you think about it!


The Substance of a Woman


  What is the true substance of a woman?  Her perceived weakness of humanity, ushers in true strength. How many times have we been told “Just like a woman….”, “You’re too emotional” “Female drivers!” “Female hormones could destroy decision making…” 
  We have been force fed this cultural crap for centuries. It has been downloaded into the collective consciousness. This is a time of awakening. A time of synergistically walking together as females and males in peace and acceptance of all the gifts we bring to the table.
  No more “War of the Roses” gotcha mentality. No more competing or tearing each other down. The ting and the yang of our couplings in love and creation – spans all areas of our life! Together we can create a world beyond our wildest dreams!
  It has taken a long time for me to get to this place. The veil has been lifted from my eyes. Partnership creates. After being on this planet for decades, in numerous incarnations of my life – there is such beauty, challenges and creation in a loving partnership. I have an amazing daughter, as the fruit of one of those partnerships. 
  I have time traveled through the stages of ingĂ©nue, career woman, mother, friend, in law, lover, community activist, educator….. in partnership. Love adds jet fuel to dreams. It stands by us. I am a hopeless romantic with a warrior heart. I will have the courage to stand in the field of love and partnership again. It’s my dharma.