Collaboration of Humans and Nature

We live in a world of so much urgency, so much to do, so much to accomplish, and we can easily get lost in a sense of constantly striving to achieve. 

I spent the past weekend with my dear friends and cofounders of Amidst the Trees -Shelly and Molly.  We went to Lake Wilson- Shelly’s cabin to “get things done”.  So much to do to prepare for the next year, planning retreats, writing outlines, securing dates, deciding on menus- all the logistical stuff. 

As much as I love hanging out with my friends, I was also feeling a bit spent with a sense of always doing, always organizing, and always attending to the details to get things going.  Going into the weekend feeling both glad to have some space in nature with friends and a bit reluctant to work.  Wondering as I packed my bags, am I going to feel restored after this weekend? Asking myself, – am I practicing what I hold for others?

I don’t know if you live by the motto- first work and then you can play.  This rarely works for me.  Good thing is – Amidst the Trees- was NOT built  on this motto.    

Molly, Shelly, and I did not come together to build a business.  There was no stirrings of that in our first gatherings.  Well- at least not consciously known to us. 

Instead we gathered to play, to commune with nature, to feel into the strengths of our bodies as we skied, hiked, canoed, swam, breathed into the fresh air of nature and sensed into the renewal of the earth, rock, waterfalls, wildlife, and winged ones.  We walked away from those connections with uplifted spirits, warmth in our hearts, and reverberating giggles that sustained us (at least me) for months. 

Remembering our roots, I consciously chose to listen to my body as I went into this past weekend.  Instead of going in -to push through and make it happen- I decided to first attend to self within the gifts of nature and connection with others. 

After finishing unpacking the car (in the rain), we got on the lake.  I paddled the kayak slowly and sometimes not at all, letting go into being held by the water.   The soft trickling of the water along the kayak, started to soften the muscles, and my shoulders dropped a bit from my ears.  My butt started to drop into the seat of the kayak.  As loons swam near and let out some very soft faint coos, I felt the reminder to be tender in attending to self.  Listen and attend.  There was no desire to accomplish and move around the lake, I could just sit, just watch, just take in the gifts.

This ended up being a theme throughout the weekend, soften the heart, open – allow yourself to receive.  Throughout the weekend, we repeatedly prioritized first….. the hike, the holding of a rock, and listening to the messages as we watched the frog in the mud puddle, the soaring of the turkey vulture, the quiet of the blue heron passing just prior to dark, the crackling of the fire, the sunfish nibbling on toes, the leaning into the sturdiness of the tree, several fleeting appearances of shooting stars  and so many other treasures. 

We leaned into that which is always there to hold, guide, renew when we pause to see and take it in.  In the midst of that – our connection and holding with each other also naturally unfolded. Tears, laughter, giggles, hand holding, hugs happened as we deepened into the stuckness inside, the pain, the things that get in the way of our true self.  Healing was again ignited within the holding of nature and human connection.  We trusted in sacredness of spirit and the reorganization that takes place and takes us into the next day, next week and so on.   And so today, we continue to feel the transformation happening inside of us.  Some things not so comfortable yet yielding into the process- healing is happening.

And- yes within this vastness and power of collaboration with nature- we got the work done.  We came away with all work agenda items accomplished. 

We invite you to join us as we gather in Akeley at Crow Wing Crest Lodge September 15th for our weekend retreat or join us October 13th for our One day retreat at Eastman Nature Center in Dayton, MN.

We will hold space for you to connect with nature, listen inside, track the wisdom of your body, and sense into what is unfolding in you to access your authentic self.   Are you interested in what happens for you when humans gather together and open to the gifts up nature?  Join us. 

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