Hi peeps that read my scribbles and bibbles.
I am often not a very peopley person .. in fact I often post this pic on Facebook:
That being said I realize the need for a network of people around you for support, assistance, to laugh with or just to have a quiet coffee with – more so now than ever before for sure and I have slowly but surely building this network and appreciating that they are in my life and why they are in my life.
I met a lovely lady – like twice – through another person and that’s how she came into my life. She has some very special things about her and I immediately felt “at home” around her. She and her friend elected to run a Women’s Retreat Weekend this past weekend – there was some agenda but in the end I could do as little or as much as I like – and somehow I felt the need to “retreat” and pretty much immediately signed up – then instantly regretted it as I am wont to do – because – you know peopley and strangers to boot.
I arrived with a friend whom I do know fairly well – beautiful cottage on the water that is very calming and peaceful and I’m often drawn to nature or just sitting listening to the vibrations of the water so I was quite happy to have arrived.
And then settled into chatting to some of the quirkiest but strongest women I’ve met – open, forthcoming, not afraid to share whatever the topic is. The feeling of warmth and comfort and ability to be ME was almost overwhelming – and you know I had found myself prior thinking prior to arriving that geez they will be all thinner, fitter, healthier, younger than I, they all know each other — what will we talk about ..
Nevertheless we all chatted away almost like we were old friends strangely. And these women were very cool and open – and I’m going to give you a sample of what I heard (and not because I want to call out anyone or really out anyone’s secrets here):
- One woman had had brain surgery at a very young (to me) age and she was happy in her own skin and with her life for the most part. The bravery of this individual was amazing to have withstood this and be so matter of fact about it.
- One woman was working to find her “business” be it fitness or nutrition or whatever her passion was but to me her gift was her saving of poor unloved dogs from Cuba and giving them the love and attention they deserve and have never experienced by finding them homes or having them herself – and this one dog she has now has hind leg and bottom motion impediments but this dog does not know or care about his issue and has so much love to give and she is in turn learning so much about care and self care/sacrifice from this dog.
- One woman is facing a biopsy and possibility of breast cancer which is a very scary and paralyzing thing because you don’t know what you don’t know until the procedure is done; yet she spoke openly about what was happening and some other women with experiences with this situation came forth with help as much as possible to allay the fears and assist with any preparation.
- Several women spoke about breakups and marital breakdowns with such knowledge and wisdom of what they learned and strength in moving forward in creating their life they could be proud of that involves taking care of themselves. So many of the women have been in this boat in this group – likely larger than the divorce statistics which I think are less than 50%:
- According to the latest Statstics Canada date, approximately 38 per cent of all marriages end in divorce .
See .. strong women. All in a room (or cottage) .. some know each other, some know of each other, some know only one or two of the hostesses, some we found out know people we know .. all coming together to have a retreat weekend without expectations, judgement or hassles.
What did we do? Did we just cry about our situ and bash men? Did we sit around in sexy pajamas and pillow fight (insert man brain here)? What was this women’s retreat? We participated in whatever we felt like or retreated to a swing chair or a dock or went for a walk on our own if need be –
- We received T shirts which we all loved in a gift-bag with other cool things in it – with a saying/comment personally chosen for you and taped to each bag:
- We watched a movie entitled Embrace – you will recall this lady posted a fit picture of herself as before and a less than skinny picture as after and caused a stir as it was the opposite of expectations:
- Embrace follows body image activist Taryn Brumfitt’s crusade as she explores the global issue of body loathing, inspiring us to change the way we feel about ourselves and think about our bodies.
- We walked in a provincial park and spent time on a lakeside in the wind – and ate a cool lunch and had snacks (mmm .. power balls)
- We climbed trees
- We took pictures
- We ate delicious food, planned and prepared by the hostesses and anyone else that wanted to help with no expectations there (the pampering promise was real)
- We had a yoga nidra session – all laying down on mats or in chairs in a small living room – head to toe, or side by side – snoring optional
- We had therapeutic touch or emotional release sessions from one of the hostesses
- We tried out face soaps and cleansers that we don’t know about
- We tried stretching in the morning, I think there might have been yoga
- We read books we brought or books others brought, discussing them sometimes
- We talked in groups of 2, 3, 4, 10 .. whatever worked at the time
- We sat in the dark due to the power outage and made bead bracelets by candlelight
- We burned bay leaves on which we had written those things we needed to release (the Friday the 13th Harvest Full Moon IS the time to do this thing)
- We learned about essential oils and smells
- We learned about USANA products like smoothies and face masks
- We watched the rain and embraced the winds
- We allowed a dog to love us even though we were strangers
- We learned what strong women look like
So grateful to have had the experience and taken the chance to spend the weekend with essentially 10 strangers 🙂 who are no longer really strangers but are such strong and inspirational women!!!
thanks for reading my scribbles.