Sunday, October 26, 2014

Growth in Vermont

I find growth and change and hope and guidance in many places. This weekend I attended a spiritual retreat in Vermont, my 9th year attending. Our group of women ranged in age from 41 to over 70, we come from many walks of life. Some of these women I've known for years, others I just met this weekend. Many of these women have been attending this retreat far longer than me, for others it was their first time. What we all have in common is the goal of being women of grace, dignity, and honor. We all strive to be useful in our lives. We prop each other up, help each other along and generally trudge the road of happy destiny together.

Throughout our weekend, we have many group meetings, shared meals, private conversations, laughs, and tears. We leave time for private reflection, a walk in the woods, or a quick shopping trip in the next town over. Mostly, though, what we have is sisterhood...a family bond that is the family-of-choice sort.

From these women, I received some insightful feedback over the weekend. They shared with me how they had watched me grow over these past nine years, observed how I am living today, and suggested ways to further improve upon the life that I have. While I already saw in myself some of the things they observed, some I did not. Regardless of the observations they made, they delivered them gently, respectfully, and with love. They offered possible solutions to blockages I put in my own way. I asked them to hold me accountable for the growth I hope to continue and foster. I asked for their help.

At the end of our time together, one woman shared the following reading, which I was able to find online here:

This image, by Jen Delyth, can be found at 

I Hare have been the clever one,
up to my tricks, always a winner,
fooling man and beast – but not now,
not you, pretty lady, holy one.
You untwist my deviousness.
I huddle at your feet 
in your garments’ folds, 
and am simple hare, fool hare, hunted hare.
I have doubled and doubled,
am spent, blown, not a trick left
to baffle pursuers.
A leap of despair 
has brought me to you.

Like the hare, I seek the shelter of these women. I seek their protection. I seek their guidance, their advice. I seek neither to trick, nor to deceive, nor to run any longer. I seek to be left bare and to be in their care, under their tutelage, allowed to grow, to make mistakes, but mostly to become the woman I seek to be.



Honestly, I can't be bothered to go back and load all the missing I'll start with meals when I returned home.

Thai veggie curry, mixed veggies, and cauliflower
cheese ravioli and cauliflower

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