Pack away everything before you go to sleep and start your day in meditation. Usually, the first thought in the morning is the last thought the previous evening.
***I was still thinking about it this morning though there were some significant improvements. The urge to check the phone even before the eyes are fully open is gone. That’s big.***
When I woke up last Friday I knew I should be elsewhere. I have been contemplating about it for several days last week and I still haven’t arrived at a decision. But that Friday morning, I knew in my heart I was coming.
I made some plans with Mom that weekend. I have to take it back. After replanning and fixing everything it was like on cue that Mom ringed to ask for something. After a short conversation telling her I decided to go and filling her on the new plans for the weekend, we hanged up. I know she sensed that I needed it. Moms always know.
So I found myself in a retreat house last weekend. I needed time with myself. My sister reaffirmed it.
Dad was so sweet to drive me to Tagaytay and promised to pick me up a few days after. Well, I kind of forced him. Still he’s sweet.
I have no idea what was in store for me. All I remember was that I received a newsletter from this retreat house early last week and they were inviting people to attend their public seminars. I checked their website, conferred the date with my schedule, and signed up (even if I aint sure yet if I am coming).
I don’t need to see what the topics are about. I have been coming back to this place for years. I know I am safe.
I was the first to arrive. I learned from Sister Yugini that there will be 3 of us in that retreat, a small intimate group and it would be great. My heart sang. She told me my room number and I climbed up the steps. The place has been like a home to me. I know almost every nook and cranny except for those places where guests are not allowed.
As I clamber up the stairs, I felt peace. I know this would be a good weekend.
After settling down, Sister called me for some tea. I fixed myself a mug and they offered me some almond cookies. I don’t like cookies. I think I have eaten enough to last me a lifetime when I was young hence the sight of that cute little pastry repulses me. But no, this one is different. That piece of dough was prepared with love. And it was lovely to say the least. I ate 2 (plus I requested another one come dinner time). It was just so milkily divine if there is such a word.
The other sisters came out and met me. They have been like family to me. We know each other by first names. We did some catching up. How have I been, where am I connected now, how are the others etc. It feels so right.
Then, as we wait for the other guests, they suggested that I watch a nice video talking about relationships. Ok. Spot on.
As I was alone in one of their TV areas munching on the words of the speaker, the aha moments kept piling up. I can just smile inwardly.
Sarah, one of the participants who became my roomie in those 3 days, arrived. You just know that people who gravitate to such a place are similar souls. No warming up is needed. We just connected.
Then Kathleen came. Same story. The “Three Musketeers”, as what they called us, is complete.
After a hearty vegetarian meal (that’s the only thing they serve and I am not complaining… the food is indescribable), we started our first session.
“Why are you here?” I guess that was the most difficult question of Sister Yugini in those 3 days.
I haven’t clarified my intentions to myself. I just know I needed to be there. Sarah went first and managed to croak a sentence that was full of emotions. Her voice was breaking. What she said resonated. Then it was my turn. I looked inwardly and rehearsed an answer that would be closest to the truth.
I am going through transitions. There. That’s what I said. Transitions. That word captured it all. I am having endings and new beginnings in a lot of areas in my life. I need to be prepared.
To say that those 3 days of inner journey helped me would be an incomplete and unfair description. Realizing again the innate qualities of my soul, managing my thoughts, understanding why things happen, and reconnecting to the ultimate Source to recharge were all comforting events.
After lots and lots of activities, discussions, meditation, conversations with self and alone time, I believe I got what I needed.
And having 2 sisters joining me in this soulful retreat was a bonus. Sharing stories, mulling questions, giving advices and just listening to each other’s confessions completed the experience. It feels more like attending a slumber party cum detox party cum soul party.
The weekend turned out just as I expected. The soul was enriched, empowered and reminded of its true nature.
Come Sunday and we have to part. My parents together with my sister picked me up. It was perfect.
The Three Musketeers promised to meet up again one of these days to catch up on how life has been so far.
We were ready to face the new week again.
I found these cherry tomatoes in their garden. Aren’t they pretty?