For years, I'd been dreaming of taking one of those soul searching retreats. Somewhere where I could be alone and not talk with anyone. To just be in touch with nature and my own spirit, while catching up on spiritual studies.
I have no idea what caused me to "LIKE" this Lavender Creek Farm page to begin with, but one of their posts showed they were having a Full Moon Retreat. A FULL MOON AND A RETREAT??? I WAS SO EXCITED! I HAD to do this!
Lisa Hampton is the amazing lady, and the Mind Behind Mindful Fitness, who put the actual retreat together. You can read her blog regarding the retreat here: http://circleofliving.com/spring-full-moon-celebaration/
So with the blessings from my Family, I was set and ready to go for lavander day retreat! As I pulled out the driving directions my Husband created for me, I realized this was going to be a BIG trip and very new experience for me! It was only about a 2 hour drive but when you consider going off in to the great unknown by yourself and usually getting lost, sometimes it can feel like an even longer journey.
Regardless, off I went with my new Dr. Wayne Dyer audible book in play and a song in my heart. The oceanside drive was absolutely lovely and I was so excited for myself that I was actually doing this!.... Although, as soon as I took that turn in to the hills it was a whole new story. I felt myself being lost...actually I DID get lost! I had directions yet the drive through the hills seemed to go on forever! I had to pull over a couple times till I could finally get my Iphone Navigation to work. It was my second stop where I had seen the cutest place filled with lilac trees, and all of a sudden I felt like I was Nancy Drew and this was my newest adventure..."the mystery on lilac ridge!"
So off again I was, on my way to the lavender farm with a new attitude for adventure, (you know...my latest mystery! Hehe). I did finally find my way there but then NO ONE ELSE WAS THERE! I suppose I was a tad early. I tend to do that when I go to new places thinking I'll get lost. I parked where I thought the directions said but found myself taking a nice long walk through a very wide amount of farm space. It was so quiet and peaceful. I'd even glanced up to the sky to say thank you, but felt unsure and nervous as well. But finally, there it was. The Lavender Creek farm office! YES! I was in the right place...well, kind of.
As I walked up to the building, no one was there either! It was closed! Uh oh. I started looking at my original email, I texted Lisa, looking for information that I may not have read correctly.
While waiting for her response, I turned around to see a sign in the dirt (that I'd just walked through), saying something to the effect of "Please walk quietly due to rattlesnakes!" WHAT??!!! Oh great! How am I going to get back to my car if I need to leave!
That's when a car pulled up to where I was standing! In it was a nice looking couple asking me if I was there for the retreat. (whew!) I said yes! (By the way, this is the couple that would later get me out of the Lavender Creek Farm!). The nice couple then asked where we were supposed to park and I told them where I parked because I wasn't sure either. They said thank you and continued up the road...hmmm...I wonder if I should have done that myself.
A few minutes after that came another couple walking towards me. I told them to walk quietly due to rattlesnakes, and pointed at the sign! Apparently, they parked where I did and I told them that I was thinking of driving up the road. They agreed and we all quietly walked back to our cars together.
Up the pathway we found the event!! YAY! And there was Lisa greeting me and very happy I finally found my way-she'd just gotten my text.
As I looked around, I noticed that I was the only one who came solo! (well, besides Lisa herself)
I had assumed it was more of a solo, mostly a girl kind of retreat but here they were all couples! (which I realized was actually kind of cool!) But I felt even more empowered by the choice I made in coming alone. Plus this is what I'd been manifesting in my mind for so long and here I was finally actually doing it!
We were taken on a nice tour of the farm and got to see how they made their essential lavender oils that we sampled. Lisa led us on a nice hike and spoke to us about mindfulness, which became really huge for me. I would begin studying mindfulness in the months that followed.
Lisa gave us each a raisin that we held mindfully in our hand. She spoke to us about focusing on that raisin. As we slowly put the raisin in our mouth, she then led us through the whole process of mindfully savoring it-the texture,, the taste, slowing down how we eat. Really being in touch with our present moment.
Our group was also taken into the Labyrinth where Lisa spoke about Spring, as we emerge from the darkness into the light, Spring cleaning how we care for ourselves, and embracing the change. We then silently walked through the Labernyth. letting go of what no longer served us. YAY! I was certainly ready for that!
It was such an incredible day of mindfulness, savoring lavender water, meditating, add some poolside yoga and a massage, there are NO complaints! I'd even made time to visit their cute little lavender farm general store for some key lavendar items.
The day went by so beautifully and soon darkenss was on it's way with a full moon not far behind. As we watched the sun fall behind the mountains, we drank wine with a specially prepared spirng feast put together by Lisa. It was nice to sit down in one place and get to really know the people I'd spent that whole day with.
Soon it was VERY dark, like you now need your flashlight phone app to find your way around! And there it was. The full moon in the deepest darkest sky! (Somethng we never get to see in the skies of Long Beach, CA.-for me this is a HUGE deal) A few of us felt inspired to find our way back to the Labyrinth once more and silently we walked through it again. The glowing purple lights were so invigorating for me...for us. There was so much powerful energy!
But then all of a sudden I heard my name being called from the black darkness. I forgot I had asked that nice couple - the couple whom I first met by the Farm's office, to let me know when they were leaving so I could follow them out! (No way was I going to try and find my way out of those windy hills alone! Nancy Drew or not!)
And so I said goodbye. Goodbye to one of the most beautiful days ever where I celebrated my own spirit without the usual overwhelming fear. Goodbye Lavender Farm and to the owner who opened her luscious farm to us, to my new friends of that day whom I probably will never see again but will always be connected to in oneness and thank you to Lisa Hampton who will always be the teacher who introduced my spirit to the art of mindfulness.
And yes I did find my way home!
Thank you for reading!