Have you ever stopped and done something radical?
- I did.
Earlier this year I saw a post by one of my favourite insta yogi’s @sallymustang - she was talking about a self love retreat she was hosting later in the year. For those of you who don’t know, Sally is a yoga instructor (amongst many other magical things), from Byron Bay, Australia. A couple of years ago Sally was teaching a few classes in Noosa which I was able to attend. I instantly fell in love with her energy, her passion and her complete openness. If you have seen her instagram, you will know that she is absolutely passionate about sharing love, for herself, for the planet, for her body, for her partner, for yoga, for everyone. When I first met her I felt like I was smacked with a dose of pixie dust, I felt elated and passionate and wondered how I could tap into that magic source within myself.
There are so many reasons why Sally’s post spoke to me, but at the core of it, when I truly ask myself, the answer is I feel lost- I don’t love my body, do I even love myself? I feel ashamed to write that. My body carries me everyday, my body has given me Wylie. Since I became a mother though, something in me (like I am sure many women) shifted. As strong as I became in some ways, weaker I became in other areas. Where I was once confident, I now had self doubt creeping in. I feel fat all the time, it’s ridiculous I am a size 6-8. I feel old and tiered- all- the- dam-time. I feel, or should I say “felt”, a complete disconnect from my body. My confidence in my appearance, my sexuality, gone. This disconnect from myself has been growing for the last four years and has become a block so big that I am numb. I don’t want to be numb anymore, I want myself, my joy and my love back. So, when that post came up- I instantly emailed my application through. I knew this trip was meant for me as it fell directly in the school holidays- which meant I didn’t need time off work. Divine intervention, manifestation, universal alignment- it was meant for me.
Simon was 100% supportive of this trip, he wanted me to go probably just as much as I wanted it. He has been trying to help me gain my confidence back, but it’s something that has to come from within. My parents, bless them- took time away from their work lives to look after Wylie for two weeks. With the stars aligned, I packed my bags and headed to Bali.
I had never done a yoga retreat before, this was something very much out of my comfort zone- but everything I knew I needed. When I flew into Bali, I was met by a driver and five other ladies who were attending the retreat. We all spoke cautiously, nervous energy flowing in the air. It was exciting, scary - it felt like something was about to happen… the anticipation of something magical. There were the polite introductions and general chit chat, but I have to say, the connection between us all was instant. Though we all came from different places, and were there for different specifics, we were all seeking the same thing- an understanding, an appreciation and somewhere safe to speak our truth. I had no idea the level of love I would feel for these people in six days time!
Bali Eco Stay is about 3.5 hours from Denpasar airport, the drive was a little taxing on me, but the scenery was ever changing and intriguing. As we left the busy city behind in search of the mountains and rice paddy’s, I felt a sense of ease washing over me. Bali definitely holds magic in her belly. The simplicity and richness of the land and joy of the people is truly refreshing, I felt a sense of familiarity to my current home town, Hope Vale. When we finally arrived at Bali Eco Stay, we were taken to our glorious bungalows, and given fresh coconut and lime water. Sally appeared like a fairy from the garden, adorned in a sparkly blue robe, she hugged me and I knew I had come to the right place.
Our welcome night began with a circle, we were cleansed, cleared and smoked as we took our seats. We all shared why we had come, the opening of hearts was a brave thing to witness and it settled the nervous energy. In the days to come, we would participate in yoga classes, dance sessions, sound healings, emotional healing workshops, guided tapping sessions and self love photo shoots. I will go further into these sessions in Part 2, for now I want to leave you with some photo’s, this place is spectacular. I am so grateful to have spent time in such a peaceful and all encompassing space. More to come.
Love Lisa. xo