I’m not a yogi. I’m a 46-year-old endurance runner who doesn’t even enjoy post-run stretching, but because I am a 46-year-old-runner, I knew that I probably really needed this retreat.
Coronavirus hit our little island, and everything shut down. Some people went into hibernation. Some people expanded their offerings. I did a lot of praying and meditating, and I took advantage of both. I stayed close to home, and I found a yoga instructor who would guide me through yoga-flows online. This was an ideal offering for a person who is a little (or a lot) embarrassed by her lack of flexibility. I could stretch and flow without worrying about anyone judging me. Basically, I could hide behind a screen, and it was a great way for be to lean into this new activity.
Over the course of the year, my yoga instructor and I became better friends. We would chat about military life, puppy dogs, and building dreams. She mentioned over and over that she wanted to host yoga retreats, so when she created her first yoga-event, I knew I had to be there!
Leading up to the Event
Boy was I nervous. As I stated before, I’m not a yogi. I don’t have cool yoga clothes. I won my yoga mat at BUNCO many years ago, and it’s now looking a little worn out. One of my yoga blocks has Gus’s bite marks in it. (He thought it was a chew toy.) I didn’t think I’d know anyone there, and I just knew I’d be the oldest person to attend.
I over-packed because I nervous and wasn’t sure what I’d want to wear for the weekend. I was even a little nervous about the snacks and wine I picked out to share, but I headed to the AirBnB, held my breath, and hoped for the best.
We checked in on Friday evening, and I found the other ladies to be nice, normal people. I had no reason to be nervous. We were all ages. (I was the oldest.) We all had different body shapes. We all had different levels of flexibility. (I was the least flexible.) Everyone came with an open heart and an open mind, and it really was a “No Judgement Zone.” Katie, the yoga instructor, did a lovely job setting up expectations and helped us all feel at ease.
On Friday, we worked on breathwork, did some yoga, had a Welcome Ceremony, and then we leaned into Self Care. I immediately knew that I would enjoy the ladies who attended the event with me. On Saturday, I was the last one to wake up, but I was up just in time for yoga on the rooftop, morning meditation, and more breathwork. We then had a leisurely breakfast, and afterwards, we had a Journaling Workshop. We had plenty of time to shower and get ready for our excursion. Every part of the morning was done with ease and calm. Saturday afternoon, we went on an Excursion, made beautiful blown glass, found tacos for lunch, and had a great afternoon! We went back to the house for more yoga, breathwork, meditation, then leaned into Yoga Nidra. This was the most relaxed I had been in as long as I could remember. On Sunday, we did yoga indoors, and it was a lovely way to feel connected with the group. I got a massage, and then we had a Massage Workshop. We had a Closing Ceremony, said our good-byes, and each returned to real life. It went by so fast, but it never felt rushed.
What Did I Get Out of It?
- I was reminded of how to do Self-Care, how simple it is, and how much I need it.
- I made new friends.
- I got 4 solid stretching sessions in over the course of 3 days.
- I relaxed.
- I got my mindset right.
- I realized that I fit in just fine.
- I got great sleep.
- I finally got to do Okinawa Glass Blowing.
- I can also finally say that I have been to a Yoga Retreat.
It was INCREDIBLE!
Will I do it again? ABSOLUTELY!!!