The Parenting Coach Podcast with Crystal

S06|07 - Healing Through the Inner Wisdom of Archetypes and Menstrual Cycles

Mar 27, 2023

“Trauma is an event held in alone-ness” – Dr Becky at GoodInside

We all have trauma- times when we didn’t feel supported, connected or held during difficult times in our lives. What we’re trying to give our children is that support, love and connection during their challenging life experiences, but we find it difficult to do when we haven’t dealt with our own past. Join Chelsea and I as we dig into Inner Child Work through Archetypes, and lean into cycles of all kinds.

On today’s episode:

  • The different menstrual phases and exercise/movement/nutrition to help you through (get the PDF download HERE)
  • How to lean into, instead of push against, the natural flow of our cycles/lives
  • Tapping into intuition, energy and connection throughout our cycle
  • Harnessing the power of archetypes to aid in healing our own wounds
  • How to use story reframing to process challenges in our lives 

Join Chelsea and I at the spring retreat, Rest Play Grow: click here

Chelsea Bretzke is the mother of 7, whose own healing journey has made her extremely passionate about sharing the things that have helped her with others.

A teacher by profession she has broadened her training to include teaching yoga, guided meditations, as well as the power of archetypes and story to make sense of our past trauma, wounds, shadows, relationships and ultimately ourselves.

She loves using her intense creativity and strong intuition to develop unique and powerful experiences with music, movement and imagination as she creates safe spaces for individuals to connect to their bodies, to process big emotions and bring insights and unforgettable cathartic experiences to their individual journeys. 

Like the ones we have at Rest Play Grow: click here


Coaching has changed my own life, and the lives of my clients. More connection, more healing, more harmony, and peace in our most important relationships. It increases confidence in any parenting challenges and helps you be the guide to teach your children the family values that are important to you- in clear ways. If you feel called to integrate this work in a deeper way and become a parenting expert, that’s what I’m here for.

Triggers Workshop: click here
Get the BOOK HERE:
Join the next round of PARENT SCHOOL:
Find Your Parenting Personality: Quiz Here
Email me at [email protected]
Information about the retreat: click here


Episode Transcript

Crystal The Parenting Coach: Hi, I'm Crystal The Parenting Coach. Parenting is the thing that some of us just expected to know how to do. It's not like other areas of your life where you go to school and get taught, get on the job training, or have mentors to help you, but now you can get that help here.

I believe that your relationship with your children is one of the most important aspects of your life, and the best way that you can make a positive impact on the world and on the future. I've made parental relationships my life study, and I use life coaching tools, emotional wellness tools, and connection-based parenting to build amazing relationships between parents and their children.

If you want an even better relationship with your child, this podcast will help you. Take my Parenting Quiz, the link is in the show notes. Once we know what your parenting style is, we will send some tips tailored to you and a roadmap to help you get the most out of my podcast. I invite you to help me spread the word by sharing your favorite episode on social media or with a friend. 


Don't forget to check out my new mindset journal for parents at, which will help you to parent calm, confident children that you love to be around.


Healing Through the Inner Wisdom of Archetypes and Menstrual Cycles with Chelsea Bretzke. 

"Trauma is an event held in alone-ness" – by Dr. Becky at GoodInside. We mentioned this on our podcast interview today. You're going to hear it later in the conversation as I dig into that. 

We all have trauma; times when we didn't feel supported, we didn't feel connected, or we didn't feel held during those difficult times in our lives. 

When we're trying to give our kids that same support, love, and connection during their challenging life experiences that we needed, we're often going to find it difficult to do what we haven't done maybe in the past, or we haven't healed our own past. It's going to be hard for us to give that when we haven't had that. 

Join Chelsea and I, as we dig into our inner child work through archetypes and lean into cycles of all kinds.


What Chelsea Bretzke does, and how she got started

Crystal The Parenting Coach: Chelsea Bretzke is the mother of 7, whose own healing journey has made her extremely passionate about sharing the things that have helped her with others.

A teacher by profession she has broadened her training to include teaching yoga, guided meditations, as well as the power of archetypes and story to make sense of our past trauma, wounds, shadows, relationships – and ultimately, ourselves.

She loves using her intense creativity and strong intuition to develop unique and powerful experiences with music, movement and imagination as she creates safe spaces for individuals to connect to their bodies, to process big emotions and bring insights and unforgettable cathartic experiences to their individual journeys. 

Like the ones we have at Rest Play Grow. Make sure to check it out in the show notes. 


Welcome everyone to today's podcast episode. I have a really special episode for you because my friend Chelsea is here. 

And before I have her introduce herself a little bit, the retreats that I do – you can find the link in the show notes here, and you can also find that on, and scroll down to the retreat section there – she helps co-facilitate these retreats.

And so, one of the things when we're dealing with past trauma, when we're dealing with inner child work, when we're dealing with shame, when we're dealing with things that are a little bit deeper and maybe a little bit heavier or a little bit more emotional…we have to get into our bodies and it has to be in a somatic experience in order to process it. 

And I knew that right from the get-go. And as soon as I was planning the retreat, I planned the whole thing knowing that I wanted Chelsea to be a part of it. I didn't even tell her until the end. I was just like, "PS, you're going to be doing this part, right?" 

And she was like, "Yeah." 

And so, she came in and she facilitated all of the yoga; and her yoga is so beautiful and so flowy, and pretty much everybody was crying every single time we did a yoga session because it was basically all the processing that we've been doing in our brains then was able to come to fruition through processing in our bodies. 

And if you have never had a yoga experience like that – where it's just like a guided meditation, yoga, learning processing, somatic healing work – it is amazing and it really sticks with you; and it was one of my favorite parts of the retreat. 

So, without further ado, welcome.


Chelsea Bretzke: What did they say? They were like-- They're like, "I've never done emotional yoga"--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yes. 


Chelsea Bretzke: -which is such a good cause we're using the physicality, but we use the emotions too. And it's that same idea of like, stretching and resting and moving through.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. It's like a processing yoga. It's totally different. And I'd been to her yoga classes before, so I knew that that's what I wanted. So, without further ado, here's Chelsea. Why don't you just introduce yourself just a little bit before we dig in.


Chelsea Bretzke: All right. Well, first of all, thanks Crystal…you're one of my favorite people. I was just pulling up this quote, "If you hang out with me too long, I'll brainwash you into believing in yourself and knowing you can achieve anything". When I hear that, I'm like, "That's crystal, that's why I hang out with Crystal."


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I have-- Seriously, I want that on a hoodie or something. Chelsea texted me that a long time ago, and I'm like, "Oh my goodness, I love that." Yeah.


Chelsea Bretzke: But there's just so much about you that just believes that you can do it and everyone can do it, and we can just do it. And when I did my--  

The seeds for being a yoga teacher were planted long ago, and I'd kind of forgotten that dream even; and they resurfaced and I ended-- I had this like, had to be, I was going to go to a beach somewhere and I would be like immersed in this like, you know, weeks of yoga. 

And in the end, I did in the middle of COVID, in my basement with no windows while my kids were screaming upstairs, but it was so good and it was exactly the right time for me and the chance to use that skill in a very different way because yoga was something that I found as a young mom; and I just found it for exercise, right?

Like, I just thought, 'Okay, I'm like post-baby, and like, what can I do in my house? What I can just throw down a mat – doesn't take space or equipment?' But it very quickly became an emotional processor for me. My oldest son has special needs. And like, I remember going to my first like studio yoga class with my teacher, who I still call my teacher

And my friend that I went with would just fall asleep in savasana, and I would sob. Like for like years, I would sob because there was so little time in my life as a mom to process everything that was happening and going on in my heart and my soul and my mind – and you have all these thoughts, and you've got all this going and all these people that need you. 

And all of a sudden, it was just like, there was this carved out space on this little mat that I could just let it come and like just let it be. And because it was such a tool for me, I feel so passionate about using it – not in a typical way, you end up--  

Like lots of times, you show up at yoga and it's about like…let's get our swimsuit bodies or whatever. It's like-- And that's it's its own thing, right? 

Fitness is great, but I knew always that I wanted to use it as this tool to help moms find the space and women to refind their bodies as this incredible tool to really get through this life. Our bodies are with us. Everything we've experienced, it's in there. Like the little two-year-old is in there, the six-year-old is in there. We have access to all these different versions of ourself. And yeah, it's just so fun. I loved doing the yoga at the retreat.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: It was so, so fun. And one of the things we did-- Well, we did a couple different yoga. We kind of just named it however we wanted to name it based on like what we were talking about and learning about. 

And so, one of them we did was inner child yoga,and another one we did was archetypal yoga. Those are a couple of things I want to bring into the episode today, because I don't even know how to explain that to people…like what that actually means and what that is. 

And you really can't explain it unless you're there. Just know that it's amazing. But we're going to dig into that.


Menstrual Cycling

Crystal The Parenting Coach: But I also wanted to talk about, which is totally related, but might seem unrelated, Menstrual Cycling. 

And I was at Chelsea's house and inside of her cabinet door, she had this list of the different phases of the cycle, and what things you can eat, and what is good for movement and whatever. And I'm like, like, "This is so good, we need to talk about this." 

I've done a cycling episode a couple of years ago; it's been a long time, and I don't think we dug into this exactly. And I feel like it's so supportive to be more in tune with our cycles; and not as a way to like track it so that we know exactly when our period's going to come or whatever, but really--


Chelsea Bretzke: To get pregnant or not get pregnant.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yes. But to move into like the flow of it, and to just like lean into every aspect of it and allow it. And as I've been doing this myself, my period has actually transitioned; like, it's changed. 

Like instead of it being five to seven days, it's three to five days. It's heavier in the beginning, it's a little bit slower. I know exactly when my cramping is going to come and when it's going to stop, and what I can do to support myself. 

There's just been so many different changes through the whole cycle, the whole 28 days or however long, with learning more about it. And Chelsea knows so much about this. 

So, we are going to dig into that, and then we're going to meld that all into archetypes and inner child healing also. So, it'll be a very woo-woo and amazing episode.


Chelsea Bretzke: You made it sound so fancy. Like, I had this very organized chart in my-- You should-- It's like loose slip with scribbles all over it. And I wanted to turn it into something pretty and shareable for a long, long time. And so, Crystal's assistant did like an amazing job. So, we have it ready for you.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Shout out to Lily! Anybody who wants it, scroll down to the show notes and click on it; and you'll grab it and it'll be--


Chelsea Bretzke: But you can actually read it because no one could have read mine because it was all sprawled.


How to lean into, instead of push against, the natural flow of our cycles/lives

Chelsea Bretzke: So, this idea really comes back to my belief that women, like we're complex and things are all connected, but we live in a masculine world. We live in a world that is really set up for us to live in a masculine way. Men's hormones are like the same every single day of their life, essentially; they get up, and it all is--  

And then they have like a little bit of a, you know, down in the afternoon and then-- Nothing really changes in their hormones. Women, I believe-- I'm trying to remember the stat that I wasn't going to share, but I think it was like 12 days out of the year is similar; that's it. 

Like every other-- Like all the days are so different, but we've been told that success looks like consistency and that if you just have-- You know, you got to have self-control and all these things you got to push. 

So, we're trying to do the same exercises, eat the same diet, have the same emotional load or social connections each and every day; and we ignore that our body does not work like that; that there are times to lean in and times to let go. 

And I was talking to a friend this morning, we were talking-- You know, here in Canada, winter is dragging, like it is-- We kind of were like, "Oh, let's get in." And then we got dumped on at snow; and seasonal disorder--  

And I think one of the reasons we struggle so much is because we don't know how to just lean into the rest. We don't know how to say, "Okay, this is winter now I'm a mammal, how hibernatory – I just made up a word – am I going to be?" 

Because we just equate our success; and therefore, our value and our worth with this very set idea of productivity and consistency…and we do not leave space. We don't leave space and we don't trust that really important things are happening. 

Under that snow, seeds are preparing. The leaves are gone because the tree is re-nurturing itself and preparing to grow in a whole new way. 

The soil itself, like when you're in fall and you're composting and you're adding in the old life and the old things, the old experiences, so that they can nurture and support the new experiences. And we don't let those cycles happen; we just think we're supposed to be in springtime all the time. We're like full summer. 

And then in our monthly cycles, the same thing. We've been given this gift of this time-- When we're bleeding, we are way more in tune with our subconscious. You're supposed to really pay attention to dreams. You're supposed to be reflective. 

There's this time when our body literally says, "Hold up…like, just wait a moment." But we don't-- We push and we believe the Pantex commercials that say, "You don't have to stop--  


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Just keep going. 


Chelsea Bretzke: "-put in whatever, and go run your marathons." And we don't listen to our body that says, "This is a gift, this is when you get to like really think about what seeds do you want to be planting in the next phases?" 

And we don't trust that during that ovulation, like the different phases are going to give us all those chances to do the big productivity – to do the big plans, to do the huge connecting…that there's going to be a time and space for all of that, but that we can just take a little moment to be with ourself and connect with ourself in this like deep wintry space.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yes. I have a new coaching program that I'm in, because I'm always in something new, and she doesn't ever teach on the first two days of her bleed because that's always her intuitive time.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I've heard a lot recently too about free bleeding where it is just like…if you've never heard of that term before, you literally don't use anything. 

You might just like be able to start feeling when your bleed is going to be coming so that you can like go to the toilet then or you might use like period underwear or something like that where it just allows it to be like uninhibited. 

And I love that idea; that's kind of something I've been doing on and off over the years, anyways – naturally, without knowing it was like something cool and hip now. So, apparently, I've been doing a lot of weird things for years and then I read about them and I'm like, "Wait, I've always done that." Anyways, let's--


Chelsea Bretzke: I know I have one friend who-- Because then, you also have to communicate this, right? You have-- I have one friend, she does-- She does beautiful monarchies ceremonies, which is like your first period and like re-imagining those for people, because most of us were pretty shamed and not invited into womanhood in like a supported way. 

But she has this crown that she made for one of those, this big flower crown. And now she just wears it when she's menstruating; and her family knows like, "Okay, mom doesn't have quite as much space for us, mom's going to have some time to herself." And it's just this beautiful little way of like, just asking for that support.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I love how open it is too. Like all of my kids know now, I'll just tell them like, "Oh no, not feeling up to that, I actually have cramps or I'm not feeling great because I'm on my period right now…so, I'm actually going to lay in bed with the heating pack." 

And they're like, "Oh, okay." 

And I have three boys. I mean, my youngest is a daughter, but like all of my boys were very open in talking about this and I think it's really helpful. I'm supportive and I'm like feeling like in the future, their wives are going to be so grateful I had these conversations with them – and that everything was so normal and open so it's not weird when they--


Chelsea Bretzke: And you're teaching your girls like, 'This is okay, you can meet your needs, you can flow with your energy levels.'


Crystal The Parenting Coach: It's not something to dread. I think that I spent a lot of years dreading it and wishing it away; and why do I have to be a woman, right? Instead of--


Chelsea Bretzke: I've heard that a lot of menstruation pain comes from those feelings; like it's more connected to the shame and the-- Yeah.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. And the pressure around it. 


The different menstrual phases and exercise/movement/nutrition to help you through


Crystal The Parenting Coach: So, let's dig into the cycles. Is there four of them, five of them within the cycle?


Chelsea Bretzke: So, there's four, I think there's a bonus little fifth one. I have a little latest.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Alright, so go ahead. I'm interested in hearing what they are and then especially what we can do to support ourselves during each of those as far as like food or water or-- I mean, I'm guessing water is supportive through each of them, but food and movement that we can do during those times.


Chelsea Bretzke: And this is not exhaustive, it's just kind of like things that I jotted down. So, your spring phase, your follicular phase is your maiden. So, this is springtime maiden. It's your planning energy. It's, you're going to-- the mornings are going to be great during that time. You're going to be strategizing and curious. 

There's this rising energy. You're going to-- This works on the yearly as well. Like in the springtime, we don't eat seasonally anymore because we just have everything at the grocery store. 

And so, we forget that like this already was naturally happening in people's lives. So, springtime food is raw, green foods, lemon water sprouts, nuts, fruit seeds. Like, it's so easy that it connects, right? You're like, "Oh, it's--"


Crystal The Parenting Coach: When you visualize spring, you're like, "Oh yeah, okay."


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. These sour flavors of lemon water. So, like during that phase, like a lemon water in the morning is going to be lovely – but if you kind of get thinking like, "Oh, that's what I have to have every single day to support the liver," then you don't remember that there's other times when other organs need supported too. 

So, that's that first one. It's really just that energy of like looking forward and getting excited and having those seeds planted. 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Like opening, I love that. 


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. Yeah. If you want to picture a little flower, it's like the little blossom, right? Like it's just-- It's the little bed. It's getting ready. 

So, then when you move into the summer, that's more of your mother archetype; this is when you're ovulating-- This is, so summertime foods, right? Cucumber, watermelons, apples, limes. If you want more heat, it's like peppers and cherries. 

But then I love this; it's social eating. I heard about this-- I was listening to another podcast, where there's this beautiful organization of women; it was all women employees, and they actually sat down at the beginning of each month and they made assignments according to where those women were in their cycles.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Oh, I've heard of that too. 


Chelsea Bretzke: Yes.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I love it.


Chelsea Bretzke: So, the ones that were like follicular, then they were like the planning ones; they were setting the goals. The ones that were ovulating, were like making the connections; they were doing all the social networking, all that kind of stuff. 

Those that were bleeding were like, "Okay, let's like look over what's happening and be really, you know, reflective." 

So, this summertime, this mother is all about connection. So, this is when you're going to feel like connecting, which ironically, that's why we have to be a little careful if we're trying not to get pregnant because we might want to be connecting with ourselves, right? 

So, it's these-- And it's all these hormones that we just tend to ignore, but they're making-- they're affecting us. 

So, that's daytime outward focus, achievement. It's our peak energy. 

So, the fifth bonus one is the late summer. So, it's like that little-- The archetype for me is like the nursing mother. So, it's the earth element. 

And so, for exercise for this one – so in mother, you're doing like cardio. 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Okay. 


Chelsea Bretzke: And then this one, you slow it down a little. You go on, you know, like still cardio--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Mother Cardio was like during the ovulation or was that the next one?


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. And you have the hand-out so if I'm going too fast. The foods for this, again, late summer is; cabbage, carrots, grapes, kidney beans, peaches, pears. Like, think about like, what are you harvesting in summer? And that's what-- That sweet potato, walnuts. 

You're getting a little bit more meditative. You're taking a little more time to eat. So, if in your mother phase you're like chatty and eating; and this is like, "Okay, maybe you slow that down a little bit." 

And then your luteal phase, this is your autumn; so, you're moving into the fall. This is like getting into premenstrual. This is the wild woman. And the wild woman, like she is the fire energy. She is the one that decides what to compost, what to--  

It's like preparing the garden for winter. Everything's grown, everything's been harvested, and now you have to like compost that back in. And the wild-- Think about it, like how much PMS gets a bad rap, right? 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Mm-Hmm. 


Chelsea Bretzke: But PMs is a time when we actually have a lot of, the focus is editing. We have a little bit of clarity about like; you know what, I had this big summer phase and this motherhood where like everything grew and was like big and harvest…well, now, what matters? Does this still fit in my life? Do I need to set some boundaries? 

The exercise is weights. Like, so like, building that strength. The element is air; and the organs is our lungs and our large intestine. So, our lungs is where we take in and we exhale, right? They just-- They know, our lungs know what we need to keep and what we need to exhale. Our large intestine has the wisdom to understand what needs to be absorbed, what needs to come into our body and nurture us – and what is crap, what needs to be let go. 

The foods are whole grains, fish, root vegetables, garlic, onion, thick skin fruits, mangoes, and bananas. So, we're moving into that kind of fall.


Tapping into intuition, energy and connection throughout our cycle

Crystal The Parenting Coach: I'm so curious if people that are really into intuitive eating – and by 'intuitive eating', and I won't just eat whatever you want, but like actually tapping into your body and following that rhythm, if it would align so well with their cycle also.


Chelsea Bretzke: So, the first time I was doing some intuitive eating, I remember a time when I was like, 'I need kidney beans.' I don't like kidney beans, but I wanted, I wanted beans. 

And then, there's actually another way that you can do this-- In Chinese Medicine, there's a clock. And so, there is a way that we cycle through all of these elements and the different organs and the meridians in our body on like a 24-hour cycle. 

So, the way I discovered this was I was waking up at the same time every night; and I was just curious enough to like start doing some research and I found this Chinese Medicine clock. 

And I found that like it was lungs and large intestines that was associated with that time. And it was-- It was this idea of letting go, and it was these feelings of grief; and it was a time when I needed to work through some feelings of grief. 

And so, there's all these ways that our body is trying to send us messages. So, this isn't about, 'Hey body, this is what you need because I have a chart, and that's what it says.'

This is about tapping in and listening; and this helps us, it guides us. But you know, you might be in the middle of summer, but your heart is just having a winter because of something you're going through in your life; and it's just being in tune with that. Right? 

And then the final one is your menstrual phase, which we've kind of talked about, it's that winter. It's the wise woman; you know, the white-haired crone or sage. The element is water, so just very flowy. 

The flavor is the warm comfort food, things that feel replenishing. The organ is blood, obviously – tears your bladder and your kidneys. The exercise is yoga, dance, Tai chi, qigong, like things that are very flowy and less resistance. 

The foods is hardy soups, ginger tea, black beans, steamed greens – anything that's really nutrient ripped, which makes sense medically because you're losing those nutrients and so you want to be replenishing them. But the focus is that deep inner – that reflection, intuition, nighttime, paying attention to dreams and just having a restful energy. Yeah.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I love that. I love that. And I love what you mentioned too about this isn't prescriptive…like, 'Now I have to do and eat everything that it says on here.' But it's a way to help us become more in tune with our body. 

And as you start to practice these, you can figure out what it is for you…what movements help you through-- what foods help you, what areas of, you know, turning inwards? 

And my favorite thing about cycling and cycle tracking has been – and by tracking, I don't mean I don't actually like track it all of the time, but just kind of knowing where I am – has been moving into this winter phase and remembering, "Oh, this is when my intuition is the strongest."

And so, remembering dreams from them then, or journaling or taking time to maybe meditate a little bit longer than normal or something; and just listening to the thoughts and the ideas and the feelings that come up during that time, and just allowing it to be so much more restful. 

I think we don't-- We think we still have to go, go, go all the time, which also you never have to go, go, go in any of your cycling – but when your body needs more rest, allowing it to have the rest it needs.


Chelsea Bretzke: Well, you talked about how we like came up with the names for the yoga sessions during the retreat; and I was just trying to like, we were trying to be descriptive, right? Like, "Oh, this will be our inner mother one, and like free mothering…and then this one is inner child." 

And then I remember when I was preparing them, and I was like, "Crystal, these are Rest, Play, Grow." Like, we ended up with the exact three sessions that your whole retreat is based on. We rested in the arms of the mother, who held us and loved us unconditionally.

And then we played; and we connected and we connected with that inner child and each other, and got into that energy. And then we went into like this future like looking forward and knowing how we wanted to grow because we'd had the other steps before. 

Like it was even just the way that the retreat was set up was very cyclical. It was very supportive. It's not-- You're not going to sit there and say, "Now do this, this, this, and that, and now you'll be successful." 

It was, "Let's go through this experience that is like naturally flowing us through this cycle of growth and rest and play." I love it.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. And I came up with that title because one of my favorite parenting books is called Rest, Play, Grow: Making Sense of Preschoolers (Or Anyone Who Acts Like One) by Dr. Deborah MacNamara

And as I was going through that book and then started helping mothers, I realized like, we need to have this kind of relationship with ourselves before we can give it to our kids. 

It's pretty much impossible to give to our kids what it is that we don't have with ourselves first. And I love doing it in this in-person way because there's just such a different special energy from actually physically being present with each other and taking the time outside of our regular worldly world schedule stuff that we are doing to just take time for us. 


Harnessing the power of archetypes to aid in healing our own wounds 

Crystal The Parenting Coach: One of the things you mentioned in each of those cycles was archetypes, which not a lot of people probably know what that is. So, can you explain that a little bit more?


Chelsea Bretzke: Okay. Archetypes, for me, personally, is my favorite tool for healing. I have not-- And that might just be my own personality, it might not click with everyone – but for me, it has been my number one access point to finding healing and wholeness within myself.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I think it's because you're a four. You're a four, right?


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. Yes, I am.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: If you know the Enneagram, I feel like this is just very on point.


Chelsea Bretzke: I love story, I love creation. I love-- Like I could talk to you for 10 hours about Frozen 2, right? Like, when I taught archetype, like we use Moana. I just-- There is power in story; and it's this thing that transcends the culture, and these archetypes are found in all of the tales. 

It doesn't matter if you're reading Eastern Literature or ancient or like…they're there because there's this like deep truth to them that I remember taking a children's literature course when I did my Education Degree. It was one of my most influential courses I ever took. 

And I remember the teacher, because I was in there with a whole bunch of going-to-be elementary teachers; and we're doing the fairy tales and he's telling us how like, "Oh yeah, Little Red Riding Hood that's about menstruation and male predators." 

And they're like, "What? No, like that's so inappropriate. We don't want to teach our kids that." 

And he was like-- And they're like, "You can't tell me they meant tell to do that, like the writers." 

And he said, "You don't trust the teller, you trust the tale." 

The story that comes out in our human existence and in our connection of like all of us humans experiencing this thing called life, there are truths in there that get expressed over and over and over again because they just are true – and nobody's creating them or discovering them, they're just revealing them over and over and over again.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Well, and cross-culturally, I just started reading this story to my kids. It's called Chinese Mythology. We have all these different like fairytale mythology, things based on different cultures; and we're going to Chinese right now. 

And reading about it was so interesting because each one of them is so connected to what we've already done in a couple other cultures mythologies. Like it definitely comes up everywhere.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. Yeah. It's just this universal way to understand ourselves. And for women, I think it's just-- Actually, at the retreat, I've put in the male archetypes as well because whether we identify as a female body or not – or male – we have female and masculine parts of us.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. It's like feminine and masculine energy, and we hold both.


Chelsea Bretzke: Energy, yeah. And we play all the stories of both. Because we live in a more patriarchal society – when we're living our maiden, like when we're actual teenagers – oftentimes, we're so lined up with the masculine ways that we aren't being real maidens. We're actually being heroes. We're being the male archetype. We're trying to like rescue and achieve and become something special. 

And then it's usually in our 40s, when we find like reconnect with the maiden energy and end up going to retreats with Crystal to support that. I guess, all I really want to say about archetypes is about how you use them to heal. So, I was talking to a woman who-- Trauma, I loved-- You can tell me who it was, Dr.--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Gabor Maté? Not that one?


Chelsea Bretzke: No, no. Becky. Dr. Becky.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Oh, Dr. Becky, at GoodInside.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah, yeah, yeah. She talked about how there's not like traumatic events and non-traumatic events, that's not how it works. What it is, is there are things when you're alone in something, that's when it's – when you don't have support and you don't have the people to guide you, that's when it's something becomes traumatic. 

So, we do this. We're like, 'Well, but my childhood, I wasn't sexually assaulted or I wasn't physically abused.' 

And so, then you'd like downplay. You're like, 'Well, obviously, it wasn't that traumatic.' But if you felt alone in your family, if you didn't feel supported or hurt or those emotions, that's going to be traumatic even if your childhood was idyllic. Right?


Crystal The Parenting Coach: "Trauma is an event held in aloneness," I think that's what she said.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yes. Oh, yes.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. And Dr. Gabor Maté talked about the exact same thing. He said that it's not the actual event itself, it's the going through the event without being seen and heard and validated through your experience.


Chelsea Bretzke: And that's why your work is so important, Crystal, because you're helping moms find the space, do the healing in themselves so that they can see and hear their kids; and so, their kids aren't alone. That is--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: That is the only goal.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. Yeah. That is your life work. So, before we get there though, we can't give something we don't have.

So, I was working with a woman and it was just kind of-- It was this little session we ended up having very off the cuff, but I knew quite a bit about her childhood, and she was very-- She's older than us, and she was very concerned about blaming her parents. Like, she just was like, couldn't go anywhere near that because she wanted to give them forgiveness and love. 

And I was like, 'Yeah, you definitely can give them all of that – but right now, what we're going to do, that has nothing to do…that has to do with their wounds, that has to do what they couldn't access within themselves.' 

But she's this incredible like, giving person. I said, "Okay, when you were a little girl and you were alone--" She got sent to her room and she just had all of these feelings-- She had--  

She said she needed to cry quietly because if she cried loudly, she would get in more trouble. And she just felt so, so alone; and so unlovable, like that was the message she got from that. 

Her parents didn't think they were saying go to your room so that you don't think you're lovable and have to deal with this the rest of your life; that's not what they're doing. 

They were just taught like she didn't eat her vegetables, so go to your room; that's like a good consequence. 

They didn't think they were sending that message, but that little girl, I asked her like, so what is she doing? She's in there like, what is she thinking? What is she feeling? 

And she said, "They're not coming." 

And I was like, "What does it mean that they're not coming?" 

"Well, if they loved me, they'd come, they'd be with me…they wouldn't just leave me here."


How to use story reframing to process challenges in our lives

Chelsea Bretzke: And so, it was difficult work, but I said, "Okay, you are an empath." 

I've watched her with children; she's so empathetic, she's so lovey – she knows how to see and hear and be there for someone. She's developed that skill probably from a lot of her wounding. 

So, I said, "Okay, we're going to walk into that house, just picture you in your bedroom. We're going to walk in. We're going to let those other adults know that we don't need them right now; that it's not about them. We love them, that's great. They have their-- But they're going to leave because you're going to walk in that room, and you're going to spend some time with that little girl and you're going to tell her what you know now, which like tell what you would say to your little girl, 'I'm here for you, you are not alone, this is not okay, it's not like-- what you're feeling'." 

I've done this for myself too. I have gone in therapy. I got, you know, stuck in-- We were supposed to have containers in therapy. Well, mine didn't work. I was like wide open; and there was these really in my traumatic like – and I was downplaying them, but I see that I was alone. No one was there. 

Some things that happened on the playground at school, the messages that I was saying to myself; and I didn't send my mother in there, I sent my wild woman in there…like a feisty aunt that like shows up on that playground and says, "That is not okay, what that kid said to you…that was not okay, and like, look at me, look at me – you, you are not--" 

The message I got was stupid girl; and it's been a message I keep surfacing over and over and over again in my life, 'Stupid girl, stupid girl.' How did you let that happen when it wasn't me doing the things, things were happening to me, but I was blaming myself. 

And that wild woman could look me in the eye and with all of her fire and all of her that energy say, "This is not okay, they should not have done that, you are not stupid…I love you and I'm here for you, and you should not have been alone." 

We have access to these different parts of us. I've also let my little girl show up. You know, my mother has shown up for my little girl, but my little girl has shown up for my mothering because I have all these messages about my mothering that I'm supposed to be all the should; I should have a clean house and I should da da da da da, and I should all these things. 

And then my little girl shows up and says, "Hey, I just want to actually be with you, let's play. What do you love? Remember what makes us feel good? Remember how you love dancing to music or being silly? Remember how your body is important to you and you just ignore it?" 

And all of a sudden, I'm tapping into that. That child is teaching me the wisdom that she had, even when she was alone – because she was a lot. And that whole story that I have of like her as a victim, I was like, "Except for she was also amazing, she knew exactly what she needed." 

She needed music, she needed her body, she needed story; and she went and found all of those things. And I can too right now; it's still the what I need. And then when I'm showing up to my kids, I'm not showing up as this adult that like doesn't remember what it means to be seen and heard. It has just been such a powerful tool for me that--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I love. I think it's so beautiful to tie-in archetypes and story to inner child healing because it is all about story, right? 


Chelsea Bretzke: It is. 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Our brains create story, anyways. And so, to heal through story, to heal through archetypes, to heal through going back to those moments. And like you said, it doesn't have to be something huge. 

It doesn't have to be this crazy event that happened in your childhood in order for you to be feeling that trauma in your body; and going back to it and bringing those archetypes, those different parts of ourselves because archetypes are really just different parts of us. Just different ways of us being at different times of our--


Chelsea Bretzke: And they're all still in there; the three-year-old's in there, the six-year-old's in there. All of those pieces of us are still in there, and they still have all of their stories that their brain has made. 

Because when you're a child, especially, being loved or cared for or nurtured, that all is life or death; that's why it's so traumatic because they rely so heavily on their caregivers. 

So, if they think they're being ignored or not cared for, that feels like death to them; and they're going to come up with all sorts of meanings and things just to survive because the brain wants to survive. Right? 

So, the brain is going to offer all of this stuff, and to go back in there and see it with older eyes and see; what is really happening here and what did you really need, and how did-- Like, just honoring, I think that too--  

So, the next place I want to go with my healing is, I think I need to go to my young mom – like me as a young mom, as a young married person that just thought like...I had all these expectations for myself as a mother and a wife that just thought like I had to do all this stuff and how alone she did feel in that. 

And to rewrite that story, and just be with her and understand what she was feeling and why she thought that; and then offering her some-- It's kind of like coaching yourself.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: It is. It is because--  


Chelsea Bretzke: Right? 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: -it's sitting with processing, reframing – you know, moving through; it's the same way, but through story. And I think you do such a beautiful job of facilitating this in a physical way, like in our bodies through yoga. 

And Chelsea also taught a class on the heroine's journey for one of the evenings as well. 

And I had this grand idea where we'd all be like sitting around the fire and like burning things in the fire and just, you know, integrating; and it was freezing goals and we were squished in this tiny little cabin because they're fairytale playhouse cabins that we're sleeping in. 

And we're all squished in there, and it was such a beautiful conversation and it was such a beautiful event.


Chelsea Bretzke: It was just a great time.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. It was-- It was-- It turned out exactly--


Chelsea Bretzke: I'm excited that it's going to be spring this time- It's going to be--


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Oh, I'm so excited. I feel like it's just going to bring a different energy to it. Right? It was exactly what it needed to be for that experience. And this experience is going to be that bud, that opening.


Chelsea Bretzke: Our retreats-- our retreats are going through a cycle.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: I know. We didn't even do it on purpose; it happened. 


Chelsea Bretzke: I love it. 


Crystal The Parenting Coach: And then I'm going to do a fall one too. So, it is going to be like, it'll be just like that. 

So, thank you for being here. We're going to close up this conversation – but for anyone that is interested in learning a little bit more about cycling and what's that download that we talked about…just scroll down to the show notes and you can just click on that and put in your email, and it will down download automatically.

And also, we would love to see you at the retreat; it is an amazing space. Within like the first two minutes of the retreat, I'm pretty sure everybody was crying and everybody felt connected and everybody felt like kindred spirits even though we'd all just met. 

And it was such a great experience and such a supportive container for healing and for propelling that growth. So, if that calls to you, if that feels like it would be supportive for your growth…come and join us, we would love to have you and to guide you and support you and be with you. And if you have any questions, reach out and let us know. 

And I think that's everything. Chelsea. How can people find you if they want to connect with you?


Chelsea Bretzke: Oh, I am on Instagram – unofficial and mostly just my family and stuff.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: And you have the yoga, you have a yoga Instagram.


Chelsea Bretzke: Yeah. Dandelion yoga. We can add that too


Crystal The Parenting Coach: With Y; dandelion yoga with a y. And yeah, come to the retreat and hang out. That's the best way to hang out with Chelsea.


Chelsea Bretzke: I give good hugs.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Yeah. Okay. Thank you for being here.


Chelsea Bretzke: Thanks, Crystal.


Crystal The Parenting Coach: Thanks for listening. If you'd like to help spread this work to the world, share this episode on social media and tag me – send it to a friend, or leave a quick rating and review below so more people can find me. If you'd like more guidance on your own parenting journey, reach out.

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