During the silent retreat I took with my dear friend last weekend
I thought I'd spend the time deepening my sense of gratitude, accentuating the positive
and generally fortifying this miraculous place I find myself building inside.
Instead, I ended up working through some really difficult issues
centering around being safe in my community
and building the gift of self-reliance.
The mental chatter was deafening, the fantasy enactments of healing
and struggle vivid in my mind's eye...
'this is your brain on silence', I wrote.
There's been a palpable vulnerability since I've returned
which I do not fear per se, but it has made for some tender moments
where I've wondered if it's time to ask for help
to vanquish these dragons.
I rationalized that I've spent too much time with them, trying and failing to shake off the feelings
of guilt and fear, but in 14 hours of silence you are excavating, writing and discovering
your history in order to experience a brighter now, five hours from now.
It's work -
When you dig, expect to dust off a few relics.
Unexpectedly, I am coming to find these struggles not just a pesky background noise anymore, but instead a series of archetypes that make me feel every struggle we know
is as old as the hills of Petaluma;
everyone throughout time has engaged in the self-same mental acrobatics
to heal the rifts, some with great success, others with a map of failure
a cautionary tale to those who venture later into the same labyrinth.
I am grateful that I do not have to feel alone in my search for betterment,
in this delicious breaking open to grow.
November for me is going to be a month of thanksgiving, never mind that we're already three days in - it's never too late to celebrate the reality of wonder.
For today, I am grateful for Pamela and Renew Yoga
a place where discovery and self-work are encouraged
with tenderness and care.
Thank you for such an amazing opportunity to learn and grow alongside 13 other
like-minded and seriously powerful women on this retreat...
and for the song of Grandmother Oak.
What are you grateful for today?