My name is Victoria Debra Polmatier; my birth name was Debra Lee Rogers and I've had other names in between. I changed my name in my 30's in an attempt to claim a new me, different than the one who was abused as a small child. Different from the one who felt small and insignificant. In truth, you can never leave the past behind. It is simply woven into the fabric of who we are.
I am a daughter, I am the daughter of a divorced mom, I am the daughter of an absent father who had no interest in knowing his daughter. I was a step-daughter. I was a grand-daughter, though all of my grandparents are now gone. I am a mother. I am the mother of a daughter who became pregnant as a teen-ager. I was the mother of a gay son who, as an adult, took his own life. I am and have been a stepmother. I am a grandmother. I am a grandmother to my daughter's children and to my dear mate's children's children. I have never been a perfect mother but I have loved my children deeply. I have been a wife, more than once and am now a wife to an amazing man who walks beside me and shares this path we call life. I am a friend, though not a very good one. I have a hard time maintaining relationships - working on that one.
I am a writer. I started writing a book in high school. Not sure whatever happened to it. I had a wonderful teacher who encouraged me to expand my literary horizons though I didn't take it very far at the time. I've journaled extensively throughout my life. And, recently I started writing poetry. It's turned out to be a wonderful friend and counselor. Hopefully it inspires others as well.
I am an herbalist. I have been drawn to the plants as healing allies most of my adult life though I have really only started developing a real relationship with herbs over the last ten years. You see, I have lived much of my life in fear. I've been afraid of doing "it" wrong - whatever "it" was at the moment. Herbalism has been a big one. I never knew what to do with the plants so I just grew them and admired them and knew I should be doing something with them. Now, I have an insane number of herbs and herbal preparations in my home and I enjoy learning about the herbs, how to use them and how to make my family's life better with the herbs.
I am a gardener. My mother before me was a gardener. My grandmother before her was a gardener. And, I'm guessing the generations before were gardeners as my ancestors were pioneers. We are most whole when we are connected to the earth, when we can spend time regularly in our gardens. I love to play and learn and try new things. Hence, I have yet to produce too many really successful gardens, but I have learned a lot. Of course, my love of gardening and my love of herbs have a great connection so my gardens always contain many herbs. Funny thing about herbs, they love to plant themselves wherever the mood strikes them. This just adds to their charm.
I am a budding bee lady. Some people call themselves beekeepers but I don't like the concept of "keeping" the bees. Bees are amazing and do quite fine without us if left to their own devices. If there were enough wild places left for them to grow and reproduce into the trunks of old trees, they'd be glad to do it. Since we have removed so much of the wild spaces, they do rely on us for housing. My teacher, Jacqueline Freeman, teaches about working with the bees, about providing them with the best possible situation to flourish in. And, about letting the weak hives go - not trying to prop them up with inapprorpriate diet and pharmaceutical solutions. It isn't working for us in terms of creating vital health and it doesn't work for the bees.
I am a deeply spiritual woman though I don't practice any particular religion. I find the spiritual in the appearance of a bird or a bee at just the "right" moment; in the feel of the breeze on my face when I'm hot and tired; in the cool, refreshing feel of water on my tongue when I am parched. I find Spirit in the plants, in our chickens, in the love in our dogs' eyes and the snuggling of our cats. I also honor the right of my fellow travelers to celebrate their spirituality as best suits them. For me, I don't believe a church is necessary to connect to the divinity that surrounds us every moment of every day.
I am opinionated. I do have strong convictions of what is right and wrong. I am loving and supportive and generous. I am also shy and quiet around those I don't know. I am honest. I have given up caring (too much) about what others think of me. I don't have to dress the latest fad or drive the latest car. I've finally learned to walk my own path.
I have been a credit union employee, starting as a loan typist and working my way to the position of director of mortgage lending. I have been a massage practitioner until my heart and my hands gave out. I have been a right hand person to several small companies, helping with things like customer service, quality assurance, product testing, scheduling and bookkeeping. I am a Jane of many trades and a master of few. In truth, I'm a bit of a wanderer.
I suspect part of the wandering is about avoiding the path in front of me that asks that I find my voice and to share and teach and celebrate with others. Time brings progress. And so, here is my voice.