A 3-month guided online journey bringing creative sanctuary to the stress of caregiving.

June 12-August 24, 2023


Creativity: An antidote for an exhausted body, overdrawn heart & anxious mind.

Writing and other creative practices can help us soothe and soften the heart and care for the parts of us that get neglected or ignored.

Immersed in the mystery and magic of the creative process, we are invited to let go for a while, to explore and connect with the wonder and beauty of existence.

As caregivers, we need space to just be, to express emotions we may not have an outlet for.

We also need a community to hold us as we learn to pause, and give ourselves time-out to play and rejuvenate.

We have this idea of what self-care looks like.

Caregiving is relentless.

It’s what makes it so hard, but we are not allowed to name it as such.

We feel guilty if we crave some self-attention, joy or escape from the seriousness.

Like we are doing something wrong, shirking our duties, being a rebel and going against how patriarchal culture says women are meant to be.

We are in the ocean and getting battered by the waves. It can feel like we are barely keeping our head above water.

Staying calm & buoyant requires ongoing moments of pause, rest and self-care.

We can’t take away the relentlessness, but we can offer a circle of support to nurture & cultivate this buoyancy.

We can learn to find moments of artful retreat for 15 or 30 minutes to recharge our energy and resource ourselves.

Moments in the midst of this relentlessness where we are doing something just for us.

When was the last time you gave yourself some space to pause, relax and play?

TENDher is:

A nourishing and empowering space for caregiving women to learn to tend to their own self-care using writing and other creative and meditative practices.

A warm, healing space to listen closely to our own hearts, minds and bodies.

A safe, nonjudgemental space to explore the healing & therapeutic benefits of the expressive arts through experiments in narrative storytelling, movement, voice, song, and visual art-making.

An online space that will help you weave moments of self-kindness, nurturing and replenishment into your every day.

A little bit about me, Ahava Shira

In the spring of 2020 my world was torn apart.


Forced to step into more responsibility when my husband of 22 years was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, I found myself resisting, feeling angry, frustrated, overwhelmed and trapped.

As a writer and artist, I had used my creativity in the past to deal with other daunting life challenges.

Determined to hold and carry myself through the difficulty, and into beauty, I turned to words, dance, song and visual art, to express the feelings of isolation, despair and pressure. I made collages and films of me dancing and sharing the concerns about lack of intimacy and sexual connection. I also wrote poems and stories, and began chronicling the journey in a new memoir. I also deepened into my meditation practice.

Using art and meditation practices to accompany myself through the journey, I reaffirmed my power to tend, to give of myself, while giving to my husband. I also realized that, as I was tending myself and my husband, my creativity, spirituality, and the human and earth communities were tending me.

Join us for TENDher

 A 3-month guided journey to bring creative sanctuary to the stress of caregiving


TENDher is for you if: 

  • You are tired of self-judgement and criticism and want to learn to relate to yourself and the person you are caring for with kindness, gentleness, and compassion.

  • You have a writing or art-making practice and want to learn how to use it to give voice to your experience of caregiving.

  • You long to be held with love and acceptance and to create from your own joys and sorrows.

  • You desire support from a circle who will listen without judgement and hold you in a space of compassionate witnessing.

  • Your body craves holding, needs soft touch and tender care but you often feel unable to get it or give it to yourself.

  • You want to explore creativity and artmaking as nourishment for your heart, body, mind and soul.

If this is you, I’d love to invite you to join me for a revisioning of self-care for caregivers that includes Compassion, Creativity & Community.

Here is how we will tend to our weary hearts, together:


We’ll invite in curiosity, encouragement and permission to try new things, and tell new stories about who we are as caregivers.

We’ll open to ones that include healthy boundaries and a treasure box of practices that help us to reconnect with ourselves and bring joy, wonder & beauty into our days.


We’ll make time for caring for ourselves, our bodies, our hearts, our minds and our souls.

We’ll appreciate all we do by reflecting on our experiences. Our stories, feelings and memories live in the body and need time and safe space to come out and be shared.


We’ll create a place where we feel we can be honest and authentic, because we know we are safe, accepted as we are and that we belong.

Our community will be a place where we can speak candidly, get support for coping with the challenges and build our resilience through the friendly connection with other caregivers.

Ahava, you have a kind, gentle, patient energy about you which allows space to be creative and messy without judgement. It was lovely to connect with myself and the other beautiful women in this course to share our writing and our stories.

I found it very supportive and healing.

– Donna Shea

Here’s how TENDher will unfold

June 12 – August 24, 2023
we’ll gather for two sessions a week for 12 weeks

Each week you will be invited to:


  • One 90 minute “Creative Call” where we will explore personal and interpersonal themes in nourishing, playful and empowering ways including journal writing, poetry, movement & visual art-making (pastels, pencils, crayons, multi-media collage). Each week I will introduce a different practice to plant seeds of joy, wonder, play and creativity. On these calls, we’ll practice this creative form together, and have an opportunity to spend some time writing, and sharing about what arises.

  • One 60 minute “Sanctuary Call” where we will create a space of warmth, kindness and serenity so that you can feel deeply, speak honestly, and express truthfully the stress and challenge of caregiving, On these calls, I’ll create a safe space where you will feel held, nourished, supported, and cared for.

  • One “Love Me Tender Note” with a poem and image of artful inspiration to remind you to TEND your own body, heart, mind and the creative soul in you.

Throughout our time together, you’ll also receive:


  • Invitations to pause, reflect, open, listen inwardly and dwell in your intuition.

  • Guided meditations to calm the mind, soothe the nervous system, relax and settle into your body.

  • Companionship through creative & compassionate witnessing in a circle of confidentiality, trust and intimacy.


My hope is that by giving yourself an hour or two a week of lightness, joy and release, you will return to the tasks of caregiving refreshed, with a variety of creative self-care practices you can turn to when you need some moments of artful reprieve in the midst of caregiving.


these are 60 or 90 minute calls

Creative Calls

Mondays @ 3-4:30pm PT/6-7:30pm ET

June 12, 19, 26
July 3, 10, 17, 24, 31
August 7, 14, 21


Sanctuary Calls

Thursdays @ 9-10am PT/12-1pm ET

June 15, 22, 29
July 6, 13, 20, 27
August 3, 10, 17, 24



I understand that as a caregiver you are really busy, and I don’t want to overwhelm you. If you can’t make all the calls, that’s okay. This is meant to be a support to you.

Creative Calls will be recorded. Sanctuary Calls won’t.

 Your investment

I am offering TENDher on a tiered system as part of my commitment to financial accessibility and equity.


This pricing system allows each person to consider their financial access when joining, making way for those who may need extra support. Please consider that the options below are about financial access, rather than emotions around money. I also offer payment plans for each pricing tier.

 – Supporter – 

OR Three monthly payments of $420


This is our “pay it forward” option, where the extra money you pay helps to support the folks on the lower end of the sliding scale. You can think of this price as an opportunity to both join us and to support your fellow community members while you’re at it. You are able to pay for “wants” and spend little time worrying about securing necessities in your life.

– Full Price –

OR Three monthly payments of $350


This is the actual cost of TEND HER, and is joyfully offered to folks who can comfortably meet all of their basic needs (food, housing, transportation, medical care), and who have expendable income to regularly purchase things like books, fancy coffee drinks, and online subscriptions, etc. You may be paying off debt or working to build savings, but you also have access to steady income.

– Reduced –

OR Three monthly payments of $285


This price is joyfully offered to folks who would find enrolling in TEND HER at full price to be a sacrifice, but it would not create true hardship. It’s for folks who rent and don’t own their home,  have no access to savings, have very limited expendable income, and cannot afford a vacation or take time off without financial burden.

If you don’t have the financial means to pay for this, you could find some source to help you cover the costs. A lot of people might want to help but not know how. This would be a great way to ask them and give them a way to support you.

If you would like to request help from someone you know, ask me about a sample email to send.

Join us for TENDher

 A 3-month guided journey to bring creative sanctuary to the stress of caregiving


Feeling unsure if you are a “caregiver”?

Here is what I mean when I use that language:

  • You are currently taking care of a spouse, child, parent or someone who requires your physical, emotional, and/or financial labour and support to manage their lives. This may be in person or through phone, facetime, text or zoom. This may be visiting someone regularly or once a season or year.

  • Your attention is drawn to worry, fear, anxiety about their well-being.

  • You are the go-to person for their care or a back-up but you are still in the loop.

  • Your relationship with them has changed and you are missing your contact, touch, intimacy but are afraid to speak about it because you don’t want them to feel bad.

  • You feel tired, drained, despairing, frustrated, angry or a combination of these emotions some or all of the time.

  • You work in a profession where you are a support for others who rely on you for their emotional, psychological, mental health well-being.

  • You aren’t sure whether what you do for others is considered caregiving but you are having difficulty keeping up your own mental health or physical wellness due to being there for others in some way.

  • You feel like you have been losing parts of yourself because you haven’t had the time or space to give them attention in your busy schedule of caring for others. You feel there is something missing but you aren’t able to articulate it.

  • You wonder if it’s normal to feel angry, despair, frustration, and/or grief if your spouse, parent or another loved one are still alive but they have changed and your relationship with them has changed.

TENDher is for women caregivers who:

  • want to face the anxiety, dread and uncertainty of their situation with creative openness and compassionate curiosity.

  • yearn to reclaim parts of themselves which have been lost or neglected through caregiving.

  • desire to rebel against the belief that caregiving is a lonely and isolating experience and are ready to create community to support each other.

  • sense that there is spiritual learning here and want to understand and practice a more wholistic awareness of caregiving.

Join us for TENDher

 A 3-month guided journey to bring creative sanctuary to the stress of caregiving


I learned that I can process hard things through writing about them.

I value listening to others’ writing. I find others’ work very inspiring. I want to try writing more regularly i.e. cultivate a regular writing practice.

I can do this!

Jaqui Gingras