Evelien op Weg

Evelien op Weg

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A month at Rustic Retreats

After one month at Rustic retreats in the south of Spain I have read 4 books, sunbathed for about 12 hours, rescued 2 baby bunnies, got introduced to K’s Choice Backpack session, waved farewell to 4 groups of amazing people, 2 volunteers and 1 teacher, discovered yin yoga and did my first yoganidra.

Sleeping
Wrapped up head to toe in my red sleeping bag covered with another sleeping bag I’m warm and cozy in the slightly colder nights. (I still don’t know why the temperature in tents drops so much compared to the outside night and making it very very very difficult to get out of my comfyness in the mornings to arrive at the meditation in time) Since years I’m having 10 hours of sleep almost every day and I must say I like it. The first week I had very vivid dreams every night, my subconsciousness was clearly processing a lot of information, but these are now only on the nights we have our cheese board. In the first retreat there was a girl who told me that my body is compromising for the sleep it didn’t get in the last years and I’m determined to let my body rest as much as it wants here.

Letting go
Saying goodbye is the hardest element of letting go to me. You meet people who you care deeply for, have a shared love for trays or your lives seem to be in a similar place. Most of the time those people move out of your life again. I used to be really afraid of people leaving me and in some ways I still am (I finally started in the book my friend recommended to me over a year ago). It takes me a while to meet new people and connect with them. And just recently I have been feeling fine about this. On top of Roque Noble on Gran Canaria my very dear friend told me that once I get connected with somebody I stay connected. It made me realize that this is just my way of connecting. And I can’t be in a more better place to learn more about this part of myself. Every week there is a new group of amazing and like minded people who inspire and touch me, but also leave after one week.

Drinking tea
“You drink a lot of tea!” I heard after 3 days here from the other volunteer. And I do drink a lot of tea. I love how it can warm you from inside when you are cold. I love the first sip when you didn’t have any tea all day … heaven! The negative part about drinking lots of tea is that I have to visit the toilet a lot as well. When you are living in a house in a city this is not an issue (unless you are just biking home and you really have to go and you are doing the “I-have-to-pee”-dance at your front door in combination with finding the right key to open the door), but it is when you are living in a tent, sharing the two toilets with 15 other people, needing to walk up or down a steep hill every time and the night definitely colder than your warm and cozy sleeping bag. So I started the experiment of drinking maximum of 4 cups of tea a day and 3 of these are fresh ginger tea. And you know what: For the first time in years I seem to be controlling my blather instead of being controlled by it. I don’t have to get out of bed in the middle of the night so I get a full night of sleep every night.

Laughing
The situation: two lovely gay men and me are sitting in an Italian restaurant in Totana after doing laundry for 4 hours after the guests left that morning. In those hours there were a lot of jokes going between the two men and I just couldn’t stop laughing. At the end of our meal one of them asked “Just la cuenta please” and we start laughing more than before. The water I had in my mouth went down the wrong way and I almost choke because I’m laughing that much. This situation and others in the last months made me realize how important laughing is for me and my mental health. I’m a sensible person and can get stuck in my seriousness. When I’m laughing I feel energy flowing through me and a lightness that I sometimes forget I possess. My playfulness is hidden under sensibleness. In the past my sister was one of the few I could really laugh uncontrollably with. Now I’m trying to give way to my inner child more. Whenever I’m not yet able to give in to this I’m feeding my inner child with confidence by being aware of the feelings inside while somebody else is doing something crazy. Slowly my inner child is becoming more and more happy.

Going naturel
I always tell people that 4 years ago I started doing a lot of stuff that I always felt I’m ment to do and apparently there is no end to this. The water from the shower goes back on the land. Because of this we are only allowed to use organic shower products. I didn’t bring these. I could have bought them here, but I also always wanted to try to not wash my hair with shampoo to see what happens. I knew you have to go through this phase with greasy hair and I know how uncomfortable I can feel myself without greasy hair when I’m in a meeting with a client so I never tried it. Since a month I only wash my hair once a week and without shampoo. It’s still feels greasy, but it’s looking better week by week. My natural curls and shine are coming back and it starts getting greasy after 5 days instead of 2. Plus side to this is that I also shower only once a week which saves us a lot of water with which we can water our vegetables.

Back to basics
People, me included, lost track of how it is to live in our natural system. We altered the system to how we wanted to live and not how we are supposed to live in harmony with nature. Somewhere I knew this already, but seeing a nomad bake bread in the sand and guiding us through the dessert made me realize this more. I saw how happy this man was when he was back in his natural surroundings and living with and in it. Life becomes so much more simple when you are eating sand baked bread under the stars. Humans think that possessions make you happier, because this is what we have been experiencing when in fact we don’t need much. I need food, shelter and a occasional hug and I’m happy. I enjoy not having non stop access to the system humans created. It creates space for my own peace and creativity to awake and make me happy.

My healing way
I found a word for this chapter in my life. I finally found a word that fits to my reason of my trip. It’s a very simple one and I was already feeling it but unable to explain it. I’m healing. I have gone on this trip as a tired and worn out woman and I see myself going back as a healthy, happy and stronger woman. With every day that passes I can feel it happening. I’m finding my ground and I’m holding on to it. There are days that I’m skipping and running up the mountain and there are days that I’m unable to leave my bed. It’s all fine. I’m allowing everything to be what wants to be. Sometimes this is tears and sometimes laughter. Sometimes this is being in a group and sometimes this is being alone. I listen to myself and my body and let it lead me wherever it takes me.