Tag Archives: retreat

No Better Welcome

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For a few days
I step away from the routine.
I sleep differently,
eat differently,
move my body in different ways.
I’m intentional with my time;
choosing only those activities
that deepen my connection with Spirit.
It’s a sacred time,
a prayerful time,
a time filled with infinite possibilities.
I dream that all sentient beings
may take such time for themselves.
As we retreat from the world outside,
we return to the home within.
No better welcome could ever be found
than the homecoming provided
by the One
who stands at the door of your heart
and waits
for your arrival.

Back Home: What Lies Ahead

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I’m back in MD
after a long day of travel.
I’ll be honest…
It’s a let down
coming back to the cold
and the chaos of home
after the warmth
and the simplicity
of the desert.
I thought I did so much
work on my retreat,
the work of awakening,
of becoming more aware.
It turns out
the the greatest work
lies ahead.

Retreat Day 5: Integration

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Soon we’ll be heading back home.
How will it feel
to leave the warm Arizona desert
and return to the reality
that awaits me back home?
What do I do
when home doesn’t feel like home?
It’s cold in Maryland.
My husband and I are meeting with
the mediator next week.
I still grieve the loss of our friendship,
the loss of closeness, of trust,
of a shared future.
I want to have answers
but that’s not how this works;
I’m living my path
day by day,
moment by moment.
I want to see the whole
trajectory of my life,
but all that is ever revealed to me
is the next step forward,
just one step at a time.
So I take one step.
That’s all I can do.
My deep wish
in this moment
is that the magic I felt
while here
will be so integrated
within my Self
it will stay with me
and live in my heart
as I turn towards
what waits for resolution,
opening to what is.

Retreat Day 1: Arriving

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Settling into our new space,
committing to being present, honest,
honoring ourselves and others,
embracing this new experience,
giving ourselves permission
to be and to feel…completely…
I’m reminded of what a retreat really is:
a stepping back from the everyday routine
allowing deeper wisdom to emerge,
wisdom that has been obscured
by habitual modes of existence.
It’s seeing with new eyes
and feeling with an open heart.
It’s resting and nurturing one’s spirit.
My inner critic has been loud,
asking How dare you do this?
But it’s getting a little quieter
as my true self emerges
ready to learn,
to be grateful for the learning.

In Phoenix

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phoenix condo window

Phoenix, I’m here!
For one week
I left the familiar
to go on retreat,
to have an adventure.
I miss my kids already,
yet I know that this is good
for all of us.
After the heartache and tumult
of this past summer,
I longed for a different perspective,
a different experience of myself,
to be someone other than
the depressed woman
whose husband wants a divorce.
To achieve this  different perspective,
to create a different perception of myself,
a radical shift was necessary,
and here I am…
Flying 2000 miles away feels
pretty radical.
Tomorrow I’ll go to the desert in Sedona
and I’ll pray.
I practice yoga and dance.
I’ll rest.
I’ll thank God I’m here,
over and over again.
The depressed woman
didn’t follow me here.
The adventurer has taken her place,
and I can’t wait
to meet her.

Retreat Reflections

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I leave home to come back appreciative
for everything that I have in my life,
I seek stillness and quiet on my own
to more deeply enjoy the movement
and the noise of connecting with others.
Returning from my retreat,
I remember why time away is so important;
as with many things in life,
it’s hard to see all that is there
until I experience my life without it.

Happy, Complete, Rested, Refreshed, and Ready

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Just who do you think you are,
taking time for yourself,
resting,
doing things you love?
Well, if I don’t make time for this,
no one will hand this time to me.
Why should you deserve to rest
when others are working so hard?
If I don’t rest,
how will I have the energy to give to others?
How is it fair that you should have this easy life
when so many people are suffering?
I look to the suffering of others
and see my joy as the antidote.
I look to the anger of others
and see my peace as the medicine.
Looking deep within myself,
I see that the most beautiful
gift I can give to the world
is to show up with my whole self,
happy, complete, rested, refreshed,
and ready.

 

By the way, I have had the great fortune of attending and teaching at a yoga/knitting/t’ai chi retreat with an amazing group of women this weekend.  It feels so good to share in this time of rejuvenation. I see myself returning to my family, my work, and my daily life with renewed vigor and enthusiasm. When was the last time you retreated from the daily grind and gave yourself some much needed self-care and quiet time?