Women of Strength

women of strength

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The Adventure of a Lifetime

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I love adventures! I enjoy the magic and mystery of not knowing and the surprises I will encounter along the way. Almost five years ago my best friend and I found a little piece of heaven in the mountains of Western North Carolina and settled down. We brought with us dreams, passions, and visions. We were to heal ourselves from past lives. We all consist of a million lives in one lifetime. This was the place we would learn about love, letting go, trust, faith, belief, joy and growth. And, as all great adventures there is beginning and an end.  We are both ready for the next chapters. The book is open for us to start writing. We are giddy and delighted with how much is still out there to explore.

Peaceful Quest Retreats has been the magical lamp in my life. It has provided so many good fortunes. It allowed me to shred, investigate, purge, rebuild, restart, and truly love myself like I’ve never known before. I know you ask, “What does a place have to do with all that stuff?” Oh, it has a world to do with it! Why do folks run to retreats, ashrams, monasteries, and other sacred places? Why do they go on pilgrimages? Because these sacred places force the mind, body and spirit to find balance. There has to be a place that removes you from the life you are used to and pushes you to truly see authenticity. Sanctuary does this. Breathing space is a must.  I could write a book about the experiences in this little retreat in a little unknown town called Gerton.  But, those are my experiences.  We all return from sacredness with an awakening to life.

It’s with great pleasure and jubilee that we put this place out into the universe for another person(s) to experience the enchantment, blessings and love. We thank you all for the constant love and support. It has been a journey of a thousand steps and more. Please feel free to pass the “for sale link” below to others. We are constantly hearing “how amazing it would be to live here,” “this is so peaceful, I wish I could take off from the world and do something like this…”  We’ve heard all the sweet desires and longing.  This might be your chance to experience the wonder of this healing and serene place.  Much love and light to all….

http://asheville.craigslist.org/bfs/4986891539.html

www.peacefulquestretreats.com

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Freeing Through Forgiveness

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Fear paralyzes us. It holds us captive and imprisons everything we know to be true. I read somewhere that without fear there is no courage. But when you are stricken by panic and despair it’s really difficult to see bravery. I woke this morning to the sound of a world waking up. My night engulfed me with terror and nightmares. Now, listening to the birds and life I realize that other life has no hold on me any longer. I cannot understand who I was then. I cannot relate to all the acceptance of abuse. The woman I am now has no clue how I lived in that fear for so long. I just don’t know why I didn’t move forward and abandoned it. I didn’t know better. I didn’t know how. I felt the aches and pains of loneliness and responsibilities. Shame and guilt lived simultaneously drowning me to an early grave. In the middle of the night I woke in a cold sweat. I gathered my thoughts, my tears, and desperately tried to control the running of my heart. I couldn’t breathe. And softly within minutes I heard the words, “Fear not! Fear is Forgiving Everything, Acknowledging Release.”

I am who I am because of each story inside of me. Each single event led me here. I have courage, tenacity, perseverance, and a forgiving heart. The conscious mind will replay these events during sleep to clear out old hurt, make aware of new patterns, and to let go of those things we don’t always remember. Our memories store everything. I move through days without knowing what is inside of my cellular memory…until I have a horrific night and I return to a place of pain, abuse, belittling, and no self-worth.

Aha! Moments are built on these principles. Just like that I have learned to release. And, just like that I will continue to move forward. Freedom is on the other side of thoughts. I have learned to shift my perception and thoughts during waking moments. Even through nightmares I am able to understand that I cannot be hurt.

May you always find the spark of courage that turns your darkness into sunlight. You are never alone in your struggles even when your Ego tells you otherwise. I believe the Divine speaks to us through sweet whispers if we are willing to listen with an open heart. Forgive and release all! It’s never worth the weight of carrying around on your shoulders something that serves of no purpose but to belittle you even more. Have a blessed day!

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Time

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Center of the Cosmic Universe

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Every once in a while in the middle of an ordinary day there is an arrival of an extraordinary gift.  Visiting with a friend’s father at the VA Hospital today allowed me to witness humility and the reasons we are on the brink of a true spiritual evolution.  This sweet man, 78 years young, says that Gerton is the Center of the Cosmic Universe.  He lives down the street from us in our little town of Gerton, NC.  Yesterday when he shared the phrase I was intrigued to return and ask why he thought that.  In the middle of getting blood work done, an IV being installed and other tests and interruptions I courageously asked the question: “Why do you think our place is the cosmic center of the universe? You had me wondering about this since yesterday.”

In his quick wit and cynicism he answered, “Well now, sweetheart, me and some buddies were drinking and playing out back and, drunk as a skunk, I said… ‘well, I be darn, this must be the cosmic center of the universe.’ I didn’t have any real spiritual awakening or none of that.  I was just plain drunk!  I wouldn’t read too much into anything I say…!”  He began to eat his lunch.  I sat back on the chair and stared into his gray-blue eyes and saw the deception and avoidance of truth. The man is pure wisdom and extremely intuitive.  I know my peeps!  I know the ones who hide behind the sarcasm to protect their gifts.  I have that gesture and avoidance down pat.  It’s been a work in progress of releasing the fears of judgment from those who fear life themselves.

“Darling, you have an amazing story to go along with this coined phrase of yours.  If not here, then when you get home, you and I will sit and further investigate this profound awareness of the cosmos.”  He smiled, a twinkle in his eyes, and said it was a date.  I could almost see his heart skip a beat with joy.

We are connected in ways that open through a simple word or phrase. Words are powerful. Knowledge is what moves us to expand our conscious awareness.  I have had many nights of profound awareness sitting on my deck and staring up at the heavens.  I have witnessed mysticism and secrets while staring at the fresh mountain sky. I have experienced the universe move me inside and outside of this realm. There is no obstruction of lights or smog where we live. There is a purity that I haven’t found in many places.  Gerton is indeed a place of tranquility, healing and enchantment. My sweet friend has been living here forever.  He has seen and felt those things we dare not share with others for fear of judgment and criticism.  There is a knowing that reflects from his soul.  My heart opens up widely in his presence.  He’s had a few difficult experiences in his life.  Another soul would have checked out but not this man.  He kicks some butt.  A true veteran at that!

I hugged him, kissing his soft cheek and told him that he needed to get better so we can converse about those things that pertain to “the other side.” In a moment of curiosity before I headed out I asked when he got an electronic heart valve.  He shared that it was 6 years ago.  I asked if it was right after his wife died.  He said it was the spring right after.  “Your heart literally broke, huh?  All your sorrow slipped out of from there.  You couldn’t hold it in anymore.  Something in you is still a bit fractured.”  He smiled with sensibility and said, “You got it.  It DID break!  It is still broken.”  As the nurses continued to come in and out I decided it was my cue to leave until we meet again.

Our stories become the core center of our cosmic universe.  We hold it all in until we can no longer allow for it physically.  His stomach ulcers and other minor issues remind him of a life lived with sorrow and resentments.  I get that part.  But, holding his hand before I left I realized that today he became the cosmic center of my universe through the gift of vulnerability and love.  And, for this, I will be forever grateful on my birthday week.

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Ode to Spring

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Through the mist,

cradled outside the tunnel of light,

I leave behind the winter

and now reside in the shadows of spring.

Shades of change awaiting rebirth

as the path from dark turns to light

in beautiful calmness and clearing

of all waking dreams.

Pleasant afternoons with evening magic

resurface under a canopy of blue and mystical skies.

It’s like sleep walking through seasons

of golden serenity

while watching the metamorphosis of nature —

spring bursting out in orchards, blooming, blossoming.

Southern mystery bathes in spring rain,

and the oak trees salute in glory,

the dogwood in angelic modes,

the tulips in rainbow vibrancy,

all in moments of perfect beauty captured in fields of solitude.

I want to meet you there

kindly enticing me to awake from slumber.

Pillars of bark and leaves align them selves

calling the sun, teasing it through and through.

Imagine the depth of each bloom,

the secret of each blade,

the breath of each life

the sound of every birth.

This takes me, pulls me, enfolds me

with reflections of green on a canvas of nature

allowing me to forget the length and mystery of its arrival.

I am born again.

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Release of Sorrow

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Recently I sat with a friend sharing childhood stories. As she began to retell anecdotes full of heartfelt truth she began to cry. It was such a deep mourn that my heart felt her pain in one of the deepest levels I’ve felt in a long time. I saw her eyes release not just the tears but fragments of years accumulating the agony. There was a huge shift in perception.  There was a new look in her tightly held sorrow. To her surprise she admitted it had been a decade since the last time she cried over this memory. And then I wondered later after she left, “How long have I held on to my own agony and hurt from past events?” I am always surprised that another person’s release tugs at my own turmoils.  It’s a beautiful reminder how connected we are to one another in ways that pain and joy link us together in humanity.

As the quote says, “Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” I believe that I release pretty quickly…now. But, there has been a lifetime of holding on to issues. It only takes a moment of sharing a story to let go of something that’s been inside. We need each other to move through this world. We can do it alone but we shouldn’t have to. It’s part of our DNA to share, be accepted and be heard in the most profound of ways. It’s our existence. We require another to hold us and love us. I am blessed to have people in my life I can reach out to when I am ready to collapse. I am fortunate! Not everyone feels they have that support group. I can’t begin to imagine what loneliness in that aspect looks like to another.  I don’t want to either.

I am here to remind you that sharing is caring. Vulnerability has been instilled as an ugly monster that bites us in the butt. Society has ingrained us with shame and guilt. However, it really is a lie! God is listening. Your guides are always with you. There is more in this world than just what you see with your human eyes. And, my darlings, love is never far away. Look into the eyes of an animal or a child and you witness truth. Be truthful with yourself. Be honest with another. You are the sum of all the experiences you have had till now. I don’t regret much. Every trial and mistake has allowed me to evolve spiritually, emotionally and physically. Like it or not this is who I am. You don’t have to feel alone in this journey. You have tears that the heart is waiting to find permission to release…please, I beg, let them go once and for all.

Find the courage to trust another with your stories. Let bravery lead and teach someone else about your life. We are in this together. We are mirror reflections that light our way with lessons.  You got this! We might not know each other but we do share real estate on this blue planet for now. And, that’s not the only thing we share together. Our thoughts must shift to bring healing and love to others.  It’s our human duty to let go of the things that no longer serve us.  I love you.  I love you. I love you mucho.

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