Hard Times Require Furious Dancing

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My kiddos gave me this book by Alice Walker as a gift on Mother’s Day in 2012.

In the last 5 years they have seen me lose my mother and my grandparents (my foundation) and be hospitalized twice.  Tough stuff for me; maybe even worse for them.

They have also seen me dance. ūüôā

I’m sure it has a lot to do with my religious upbringing/ spiritual connection. Growing up in my church it was understood that there are times in which Spirit takes over and you are left to do one thing and one thing only: dance.

I also dance when I run. Generally speaking my music is not particularly reverent but it is always connected to my soul.

Sometimes I make eye contact with those I pass on the trail and mouth whatever lyrics are blasting in my ears. Then there are  the moments these passerbys do  a little gig right with me. I feel like Ellen in those moments. Man I wish I could run-dance with a boom box!

For me, music and dance have always gone hand in hand. ¬†I’ve definitely learned how to transcend my Earthly experience with melodies and movement.

Creating a new playlist is a sacred experience. I have to be inspired. My last playlist came just prior to my marathon.  Last weekend I got inspiration from my weekend with the love-lies.

We danced and sang like our lives depended on it.

Here is a sample of my latest playlist. Inspired by women who inspire me.

 

Can’t Hold Us- ¬†Macklemore &Ryan Lewis

Pusher Love Girl- Justin Timberlake

Radioactive- Imagine Dragons

Scream and Shout- will.i.am

Suit & Tie- Justin Timberlake

Blurred Lines-Robin Thicke

 

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So a Nuddist, a Buddhist and a Tattooist walk into a bar…

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1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love. 

2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.¬†

3. Don’t Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life. 

4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.
Taken From The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz 

I first read The Four Agreements in 2001 and I find myself revisiting it often.  While simple by design, I lose sight of the principles. Living has a way of imposing amnesia. Therefore, I read it at least once a year.

This year this book brought me closer to a childhood friend. We had reconnected ¬†on Facebook and I immediately felt a spiritual connection to her. ¬†She had experienced health challenges and was exploring a holistic approach. ¬†We had talked at length about everything from the many benefits of honey (her obsession) to kombucha (mine). ¬†When The Four Agreements came up in discussion, somehow I knew we’d have lots to talk about. Holistic health and spiritual consciousness have a tendency to go together. ūüôā

Our online conversation left us wanting to connect deeper.  We also wanted to expand the discussion and include other like-minded women.  At that moment we breathed life into our retreat.

I eventually posted an “all call”. ¬†I figured those who needed it would connect. My Facebook friends know that I am a little ‘out there’. A weekend with me is definitely going to be fun but it also means healthy eating, activity, and stimulating conversation. Maybe not what most people have in mind when it comes a girls weekend away. I can’t say I was surprised at who answered the call. ¬†I have an intimate group of behind the scene supporters. I got an inbox message showing interest from each one of them. ¬†Unfortunately, when all was said and done, only one of those ladies was able to come. She invited two friends (one I had met briefly on a run). I was going my beach trip with women I hardly knew. Cool.

What happened this past weekend was nothing short of magical. ¬†It is hard to put into words how it feels to be in a completely loving environment: free¬†of judgment, full of support, and a healthy dose of accountability. <—– How often has that happened to you with a group of women? Me… uhhhh…. NEVER.

Did I mention that these women were all beautiful? Pop a quarter off her glutes, Marilyn Monroe bombshell, baby’s breathe Angelic, and Glamazon (can’t take credit for that one) BEAUTIFUL. It is as if their inner spirit can’t contain itself: It spills over into their smiles, their hair, their soul-full eyes.

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We prepared meals with health in mind.  From gluten-free lasagna to quinoa with blueberries; our bellies and our hearts stayed full.

We laughed and we cried.

A lot.

We took our incredible energy into Savannah and jammed out with A Nickel Bag of Funk.  WHAT A NIGHT.

So what about the title of this blog entry?

Sorry….that’s an inside joke between me and these amazing ladies. ¬†I will tell you this: although our backgrounds and current lifestyles covered the spectrum,¬†I couldn’t have imagined a deeper connection.

Check out our experience from Lisa’s perspective here. While you are one her blog check out her story. She is radiant.