My wish for every woman, not only teachers, is for them to have a place that they can retreat to. One where they have no responsibilities, no worries, and no fear. At this place, their mind can clear away all the clutter of their every day lives. Breathing happens. Listening happens. A reconnection with your soul to hear the whispers of what to do next. To feel the presence of the earth around you. . . and embrace it.
Without making time to ever get to this place in our mind, body and soul, we are racing through our lives mindlessly without
I am so blessed to have this place, a little primitive cabin in the remote woods by a pond in northern Minnesota. It's not mine. It belongs to a paster friend of my husband's and he rents it out for 35.00 dollars a day. You heard me. 35.00 dollars a day. The only cabin on the lake.
I sat there for two weeks straight. My kids came and went, all older and with jobs. My husband, on a fishing trip of his own in Canada (and work). Most of the time, it was just me.
Without the lure of the internet (there was no service), I was able to rediscover myself. I wrote over 200 pages in my notebooks. I read four books. I filled pages in my nature journal of butterflies, dragonflies and mushrooms. I made egg sandwiches just for me, and I tasted each bite and savored them. I had to bathe in the lake each day. I took leisurely walks and discovered plants and flowers that I had never seen before. Actually, they had probably been there. . . but I was not.
"In our lives today, we are racing from one frenzy after one elation after one enthusiasm after one hysteria after another, always yelling and running somewhere, because we are afraid life is going to be over that very afternoon," as quoted by Ray Bradbury. We miss the meaning of why we are even here on this earth. We miss the birds singing. We miss the gentle breeze blowing across our face. We miss our child's expression on their face that says they need us. We lose being present.
It took me four days to wind down at this cabin before "my body and mind slowed down enough for me to find a basic restfulness, before I could even begin to nibble at the edges of solitude" (Rolheiser).
Father Ron Rolheiser who writes in Our Northland Diocese, tells us we are in solitude when we fully taste the water we are drinking, feel the warmth of our blankets, and are restful enough to be content inside our own skin. It is not something that can be turned on like a water faucet. It needs a body and mind slowed down enough to be attentive to the present moment.
As teachers, as mothers, as women, as human beings. . . we need this presence in our every day lives. This is when we really see, hear, taste, feel and smell our world, our lives and other souls put on this earth at the same time as ourselves.
If you have not had an opportunity to find yourself at this place of presence yet, it's still mid July, you have time before the hustle and bustle of school starts up. I realize I am a blessed soul who actually has a place to go, children who are old enough to take care of themselves and a loving husband who understands how much I need this solitude. Somehow, make your own retreat at home. Teachers are creative. Use your gift of creativity to find that way to honor your soul and find solitude.
Then, share with us that experience.
Peace and Love,