The Queen of My Self


January is all about new beginnings and fresh starts. Time to think about what we want and what we need in the New Year. Time to set our intentions and goals, make plans and lists. Take on projects to further our dreams and enhance our power.

With the question of power — its uses and abuses — on my mind, I reached out to the Facebook fans of The Queen of My Self to see what power means to other Queens of Themselves.

I posed this question in the last issue:

Q. And you, dear Queens? What does power mean to YOU?  Please send me your thoughts about power. Also stories of your own empowerment. When shared, these ideas and examples are extremely inspiring to others. Thanks.

A. You asked for an empowerment story:

In February of this year my 82-year old father had a stroke. He lives 3000 miles away. His wife decided not to call the ambulance, because Dad asked her not to. Maybe a little lie down would make him feel better. Through a roundabout way I happened to find out this was going on. I called her and got her to get him to the hospital.

Shortly after that I made plane reservations. Was told not to come. I shoved my inner child back into her fun place and let the Queenly grown-up speak. I Informed them that I was coming anyway and when I was arriving. It turned into a three week stay during which I spent every day at the rehab center with Dad doing my best to advocate for him when his wife could/did not. This included some very frank and uncomfortable discussions with physicians, doing all the driving, shopping and meals for his wife(who has her own health issues that she is in denial about), making sure the dog was taken care of, teaching Dad’s wife how to deliver insulin (don’t get me started on the practice shot that had 30 units of insulin instead of 3 – yikes!) and sundry other things that escape me at the moment.

At the end of each day, I spent approximately 45 minutes composing a detailed email of the day’s events, improvements, set-backs, plans being made and the reality of Dad’s condition as well as the reality of his wife’s inability to be “present” and able. This email went out to a large extended family (his children and her children – all adults) and had to be worded most carefully and candidly.

The short version of the above is that I rose to the occasion in ways that I did not realize I could, and maintained this successfully for weeks. My communication was clear and concise. I was able to deal with obstacles without raising my voice or being condescending, and was gently persistent until there was resolution.

I managed to get the attention and good response from people in authority. I was able to truly be the adult when I would usually defer to the parents. My daily email reports kept everyone in the loop without making anyone defensive regarding their parent. All along the way I encouraged everyone to be gentle and loving with each other in this highly charged situation. And most surprising, they all started to ask for and seriously consider my advice, including the most bossy “in charge” folks.  Many family members expressed their thanks and how they don’t know what would have happened had I not been there.

My inner Queen served me well, and now I know that I can call on her when I need her.

– Gloriana, CA
A. In response to your “power” query:

I believe that the strongest most powerful approach I can take in my life and my creativity as a public and environmental sculptor is to align my Self with the flow of the spirit. Ralph Waldo Emerson

(another Quaker ) felt the World Spirit was a good swimmer. My job is to develop a harmonic with that spirit and surf or swim along with her!! Loving support,

– Hera, NY



A. Power to me is knowing what you stand for and not backing down, but having the humility to admit when you are wrong, or adjust your position when you have grown. All while being true to yourself.

– Sarah Jane, WA


Q. What does power mean to YOU, dear Queens? Please send me your thoughts about power and also stories of your own empowerment. When shared, these ideas and examples are extremely inspiring to others. Thanks.

A. Just perused the latest of your Queen’s Chronicles, and am inspired to write you about a powerful anthology put together by Sandra Haldeman Martz, At Our Core: Women writing about Power that is unfortunately out of print because the publisher crashed, but a number of copies are available through at amazing reduced prices: 17 new from yes! 35 cents, and 54 used from (yes) 1 cent. It was marketed new for $11.00, a bargain even then, with a stunning cover and 179 pages about women and power. Tragic that it’s no longer being marketed, but what a bargain at the above prices. Power to us Women People! Power to the Queens! Love you and all your productions,

– Karen, NJ


A. Empower = power in my Queen world.

– Miriam, CA

I have always felt that there is a strong connection between love of self, security in your self, power, love and gentleness, tolerance and understanding towards others. When you are strong and you know you are strong, you don’t need to prove it and you are thereby free and secure.

– Lorraine, PA
A. Power-

There are times when I have witnessed someone who is acting at the top of their compassion, intellect, spiritual service and ability to communicate. (Maturity level and physical strength are not factors here.) I get a feeling of pause as if to move would shift a current that would dissipate the aura, the perfection of the moment. To me ultimate power is in this synchronicity.

  • Katherine, CT 

A. I am powerful when I am centered and standing strong in my life’s purpose.

-Donna, OH


A. Watch out, world. Here I come!  A sassy gal who is determined to do what I want to do. I was a good girl for far too long!

– Mo, RI


A. Power is my Goddess-given right to live my life as a free agent.

– Saundra, UT


A. Power is being 100% yourself and not compromising based on what others want you to be, do or say. It is also not giving anyone else free rent in your head — which is essentially giving your personal power over to them!

– Christine, OH


A. To thy own self be true

– Micklo, CA


A. A Queen’s power should be used to further her life’s path and to help along her sisters to do the same thing. We can do much to improve the lives of others if we use our power to do so.

– Katharine, Denmark


A. It means knowing how to access my life force energy, what activates it, what zaps it, and granting myself permission to do whatever it takes to stay connected to this inner fountain of youth! It is my chi!

– Daina, MI


A. To me power means being able to say the hard stuff with grace and non-attachment!

– Judith, NY


A. Responsibility.

– Ruth Ellen, England


A. Power is the life force within us and around us. And the ability to tap into it.

– Cristie, ND


A. In the mind of the Goddess (A Bitch) is a Woman of Strength, Power and Wisdom. Never take offense to this title of Queenship. And those who use this word are aware of its Goddess meaning. Blessed be the Woman who holds her own.

– Janel Oriana, NY


A. I KNEW someone would say “bitch!” It just reminds me of the well worn saying “Well behaved women rarely make history.” I had a conversation with a friend one day about Madonna who is one of my favorite examples of a powerful woman. I said I realized that she has a tendency to step on toes, act bitchy and make some doubt her sanity. I then realized I was one of those people, and I was perpetuating that view of a very powerful woman who has pissed a lot of people off with her creativity and confidence. I don’t agree with everything she does, but she does it well!

– Kimberly, IA


A. To me, true power is changing the world simply by the force of being exactly, only, and completely who you are.

– Carolyn, MA


Q. What does power mean to YOU?

If you have ever been called defiant, incorrigible, forward, cunning, insurgent, unruly, rebellious, you’re on the right track!

– Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to


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