“Life is not about waiting for the storm to end; it’s about learning to dance in the rain”
It’s been amazing seeing blue skies and sun again over the last couple of weeks here in Wales, after a long winter. We are so conscious of welcoming the light returning at this time of year.
As I was thinking about sending out a spring message, I came across a blog I wrote almost a decade ago, just after Angus and I held our “Festival of Commitment and Celebration” at our beautiful land in South Africa, The Garden. Here is part of the blog:
“When we used the quote above on the invites to our Festival of Commitment and Celebration, we did not expect it to turn out so literally …. After a beautiful ceremony in the sun, the storm clouds started to gather over lunch, and just before dessert the heavens opened …. Since we were down by the river, the only nearby shelter was a storage container ….we all piled in. While the storm raged outside and the hail on the roof almost drowned out our conversations, we popped champagne, passed around the desserts, told jokes – and laughed so hard at the whole situation … Everybody forgot all expectations they may have had for our planned evening candle ceremony and drumming around the fire and threw themselves into enjoying the moment.
The next morning, we revisited the site of the ceremony after the storm. The river had flooded, and all traces of the ceremony – the flowers covering the floor, the odd glass or program left lying there – had been washed completely away. Together with our friends and family, we had worked so hard preparing the area before the Festival began. Everything came together at the last moment – but after a perfect ceremony, less than 24 hours later, it was gone. I was reminded of a sand mandala, lovingly created over many days or weeks – only to be swept away. And I was reminded how much joy is in the journey and the bonds of friendship and love created along the way – and not in holding onto the outcome.”
Some days it feels like there are so many storms. But there will always be storms. We don’t need to wait for the storm to end to start dancing; we would be waiting forever. In difficult times, I have found it important to withhold judgement and labelling, and focus on being present every moment. As we become more present, we find that we can be with whatever arises – in the outside world or in our minds and emotions. In the face of all different kinds of challenges, we find solace in being with our loved ones, in feeling gratitude for everything we are so lucky to have, in building bonds within our local communities and in spending quiet time in nature.
Here in Wales, we are starting to get everything ready for the upcoming Eco Retreats season and we are looking forward to a busy Easter and spring! We won’t be offering Forest yurt this year due to some upgrades needed on the site – but please watch this space for some exciting developments on the way! In the meantime our other four yurts are bookable as usual at www.ecoretreats.co.uk.
If you’re in need of some quiet time out from everything in nature, we’d love to welcome you here.
We look forward to reconnecting with return guests and making many new friends this year.