Are you feeling exhausted? Do you dream of just one hour of peace and quiet? Do you even recognize yourself when you look in the  mirror? Or do you see a tired mom who can’t remember the last time she did anything for herself? Then my friend, you are in need of a retreat.

Before you say no, you don’t have the time, know this: your children will be fine without you for a day or two and you’ll come back a better mother. A retreat is an investment in not only your mental, but also your physical, health.  It’s like a nurturing “time out.”

retreat

I just returned from my annual retreat with my best friend. This was our fifth year, half a decade, of going on retreat.

Re-reading my post from two years ago was rather interesting. At that time, I couldn’t fathom my daughter even being in kindergarten but she’s now a first grader missing her front teeth!

renewThis mandala card was made by artist and calligrapher Nancy Cleaver, the owner of the cabin we stayed at. The title totally encompasses the theme of this year’s retreat. The words review & renew are hidden in the pattern of the mandala, can you see them?

Most of the tree spirits we discovered years ago have grown and disappeared.The pine cone that held steadfast for four years is finally gone. Even the baby within the mother knot has shrunk. I guess nothing can stay the same forever. Not much of one for change, I wonder what the growth of the tree spirits mean, why the pine cone is gone, and why it bothers me that the baby in the mother knot has shrunk. Is it because my daughter is getting older and needs me less? These were all questions I pondered during my retreat.

A Time to Review

A retreat gives you the solitude to connect with your intuition and your inner guide. It is a chance to review the path you’re on, to take a look back and review your year. What were your happiest moments? Are there areas of your life that could use a little tweaking to make thing run smoother? Where do you want to be at this time next year and what steps do you need to take to get there? Don’t be afraid to dream big, but the  little things are also important. Perhaps you want to start a new tradition with your child or make a commitment to simply mindfully play with them for an hour in the evening.

A Time to Renew.

A retreat gives you space to just breathe and be. A place to rest and nourish your soul. A place to fill your well and rejuvenate. A time to grow.

20771428 - cosy atmosphere in the sauna

Releasing rituals are also wonderful for retreats. Rituals for letting go of everything that has been weighing on your shoulders, things that are causing you stress, or feelings of guilt. You’ll leave  feeling lighter and refreshed, with a sense of renewal.

We  were lucky enough to have a sauna at our cabin. My friend and I took total advantage of this. The highlight of our retreat, it was detoxifying both physically and spiritually. With each douse of water we poured over the steamy rocks of the sauna, we took turns declaring what things we were going to let go of. Then afterwards we poured ice cold spring water over ourselves and howled at the light of the “almost” super full moon.

A retreat is that sacred and holy space that allows you to tune in to your soul’s needs.

Sites like AirBNB or VBRO allow you to find great little cozy cottages and camps at prices usually cheaper than chain hotels. Plan a retreat for yourself today. You deserve it mama! Trust me, you’ll be so glad you did!

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