Reignite Weekend (Bristol): Sat 23rd & Sun 24th June 2018

£295 Earlybird before 14th April // £350 after 14th April // Book with a £125 depositNew 'reserve you spot' button

There is life after childlessness, despite what the media, your friends, your mother and your inner bitch would have you believe! A meaningful and fulfilling life that makes sense to you because you custom-made it for yourself.  

This Gateway Women Reignite Weekend is for you if you’re:

  • A woman who wanted to have children but it didn’t work out for any reason: infertility, didn’t meet partner, partner didn’t want (more) children, chronic illness, badly timed breakup, etc, etc… There are so many ways this can happen…
  • Struggling with relationships with friends and family as ‘the odd one out’
  • Wondering where your mojo went and where the hell to start looking for it!
  • Lonely and confused about your place in society when all you can see around you are mothers and families…
  • Knowing that you need to make some changes to your life but feeling too tired, sad & uninspired to know what to try next…
  • Worried about growing old without children…
  • Furious that you ‘did all the right things’ and have ‘ended up’ like this!

This Reignite Weekend is led by Debbie Norman, who has been trained personally by Jody Day, the Founder of Gateway Women.

Debbie Norman (Stockdale)Debbie is 50 and lives in Rugby Warwickshire with her second husband and two cats. Childless herself due to spending most of her fertile years recovering from the traumatic domestic abuse of her first marriage, Debbie found Gateway Women after reading about Jody’s work in a women’s magazine in June 2014. Wasting no time, she attended her first workshop with Jody shortly thereafter, and continued her healing by attending private sessions with Jody. Since then, Debbie has studied to deepen her practice of self compassion and has also taken part in the ‘Online Bee’ a year long mentorship programme run by Jody and in 2017 was invited by Jody to be one of the first women to train to lead the Reignite Weekend. Debbie has been an active and passionate member of the Gateway Women community both on and offline, organising and attending local GW Meetups whilst continuing her path personal healing and growth. A hospital healthcare practitioner, Debbie sees the opportunity to lead others through the Reignite Weekend as a way to share with others the healing that childless women can offer each other as we support each other with kindness and compassion to heal our lives and create new futures.

As Debbie writes: “Since finding Jody and Gateway Women my life has totally changed. I had no idea that what I was experiencing was grief, nor that there were other women going through it too. To meet those women, to find my tribe and to heal together – it has been a revelation and I’ve made some wonderful friends. I’m out the other side of my grief now and to be able to host this weekend and offer this healing to others is a great honour.”

Over the course of the Reignite Weekend you will:

  • Unpick the assumptions that the culture has about motherhood (and non-motherhood) and let go of what doesn’t ‘fit’ you.
  • Look at where you are holding onto unhelpful ideas and shame about the the life choices you’ve made (and the non-choices too) which have led you to ‘ending up’ without the family you hoped for.
  • Explore and express unresolved grief about your childlessness; grief which our culture neither acknowledges, understands nor allows (and consequently neither do we, sometimes).
  • Reexamine the dreams and goals you had for your life before you became convinced that having a baby was the only thing that mattered.
  • Reignite your passion for your life, and and start thinking what your ‘Plan B’ might be for a meaningful and fulfilling future without children.
  • Meet your new tribe – the wonderful, powerful, wise and funny Nomos (not-mothers). There are more of us than you realise and we’re not the bunch of ‘weeping weirdoes’ you might fear! In fact, we’re a pretty amazing and courageous bunch of women…

After the workshop and into the future

The bonds that are made during the Reignite Weekend are very special and most women wish to take those friendships forward as they integrate the learning and healing from the weekend into their daily lives. As many of us have experienced, one of the unexpected and unsettling side effects of unchosen childlessness is that we may lose the easy connection we once had with a large part of our peer group as our friends move to a country called ‘motherhood’ where we can’t follow and will never fully speak the language. Having new Nomo (not-mother) friends to plug the gap can make coping with our situation not only more tolerable, but actually fun again! It also makes it easier to keep our friendships going with our ‘mum friends’ because we’re not so bent out of shape with a combination of resentment, jealousy and boredom around them… As your Reignite Weekend draws to a close, Debbie will facilitate ways to organise ongoing contact with each other, should you wish that.

engineers house bristol
Our venue for the weekend is the elegant Engineer’s House in Clifton, Bristol

More details and to book

  • GWS Facilitator: Debbie Norman
  • When: Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th June, 2018
  • Times: 9.30am – 5pm
  • Cost: £295 Earlybird (by 14th April), £350 full price after. Places bookable with £125 deposit. All balances due on/before 23rd May Once you have reserved your place, Debbie will be in touch to arrange your payment method – either PayPal or direct bank transfer. If you wish to contact Debbie about payment methods please email her directly at Click here to book
  • Lunch & Breaks: On Saturday and Sunday we take a one hour break for lunch. We’ll also take a morning and afternoon break of 15 mins on both days.
  • Directions & Parking: Engineers House is about 2 miles from city centre own grounds by the suspension bridge with free parking.  For full directions and information, click here.
    There is a direct bus from Bristol Temple Meads Train Station which stops just outside venue.  The return bus picks up at the same place – number 8 bus.
  • Accomodation:The Avon Gorge Hotel Sion Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 4LD Telephone: 0117 403 0210 This hotel is approximately a 5 – 10 minutes’ walk from Engineers’ House Please quote: EEF Western for the preferential rate.The Rodney Hotel Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1LX Telephone: 0117 973 5422  This hotel is approximately a 5 – 10 minutes’ walk from Engineers’ House Please quote: Engineers House for the preferential rate.The Victoria Square Hotel Clifton, Bristol, BS8 4EW Telephone: 0117 973 9058 This hotel is approximately a 12 minutes’ walk from Engineers’ House.  Engineers’ House has no preferential rates with this hotel.The Regency Hotel Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1LR      Telephone: 0117 923 8788 This hotel is approximately a 10 – 15 minutes’ walk from Engineers’ House.  Engineers’ House has no preferential rates with this hotel.
  • How Many Women: In order to create an intimate and safe atmosphere, the workshop is restricted to 12 women only.
  • Who is the Reignite Weekend for? Women of any age, partnered or solo, who wanted to have children and for some reason, it didn’t work out. If you’re keen to move forward and create a meaningful and fulfilling life without biological children, it’s for you.
  • What is the cancellation policy? Your £125 deposit is non refundable.  If you cancel prior to 23rd May you may request a refund of any payments made (minus your deposit). After that date, we can only refund your payments (minus your deposit) if we can resell your spot.

Some feedback from women who’ve taken part in previous Reignite Weekends:

It was such a supportive and brilliant course – so great to meet and share time with other Gateway Women, and it allowed me to challenge myself and see my way forward to my Plan B.  (Tilly, 48)

I can’t describe the massively positive effect finding GW and attending a Reignite Weekend has had on my outlook, my life, my relationships, my ability to smile at babies and their mums again! (Kate, 43)

After getting to a very low point I thought I’d try the workshop. It was a great weekend. Just having the chance to think and explore my feelings with likeminded people was so helpful. (Leila, 39)

The course was excellent; well structured, clear and relevant and which helped me to understand the trauma I’ve been struggling though after finding out that we can’t have children. I met some amazing women on the course whose stories of facing difficulties with so much dignity and courage will stay with me. Thank you for giving me hope. (Janet, 47)

I attended the Reignite Weekend and I wholeheartedly recommend it. If you are feeling unsure about whether to go, I would say definitely do it. You will be in safe hands and in a very safe environment, sharing with other Gateway Women really helps and the exercises really get you thinking – in a good way. (Laura, 42)

I have been stuck in grief for a long time that hasn’t been shifting. [The weekend] helped me to understand exactly what I was feeling and why.  Home now – I feel lighter, more positive and more gentle inside than I have felt for ages (Becky, 52)

It was amazing to realise I wasn’t alone, other women shared the pain, anguish, fear that I did, each with their unique story and each wanting their life to move on, but not sure how or where.  I took the plunge and signed up for the workshop not knowing what to expect, or if it “was my sort of thing” – and it was the best thing I could have done. (Kristian, 42)

I attended this weekend with some ‘butterflies’ but it’s ended up being one of the best things I could have done. I’m more equipped than before I attended the event for moving on and getting to grips with my plan B. Best thing though was meeting the other Gateway Women and seeing I’m not alone… (Faye, 41)

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