We opened on October 10th! It was a great week, starting with beautiful flowers and a donut shared over coffee with my sweet husband.
We gave tours, saw coaching clients and had our first Doodle's Mini-Retreat. Can't get better than that!
You may be asking yourself, WHY on earth would I (Pam) start a place like Breathing Space? Is she flipping crazy? The short answer is, yes! But seriously, I hope that this story will shed some light.
Several years ago I was burned out in my marriage, & relationships. I was stressed out, depressed and craved peace and reconnection to God and my Spirit. I needed peace and purpose in life.
I tried finding refueling by creating a quiet space in my home, but there were just too many distractions. The washing needed done, the bookwork was stacking up, the dishes were not going to wash themselves and then we needed to eat, blah, blah, blah.
I tried finding peace and deep connection to God at church, but again the distractions were everywhere.There were teachings & programs & small groups, but they didn't meet the deeper need that my soul craved. And, being the introvert that I am, there were just too many people everywhere!
I had been learning about how important meditation, and being in the present were for physical, mental and Spiritual health. I had heard about a monastery and thought why not give it a try. It was 5 hours away, but I was desperate to get away. I had no idea what to expect. So off I went to St. Benedict’s Monastery in Snowmass ColoradoI drove onto their gorgeous acreage and thought, “oh God please don’t let them throw me out, I have no idea what the heck I’m doing!”
I was shown to my room, put my things away, sat down on the bed and thought… now what. I’m here for 4 days with no TV, no cell phone, no computers. Oh no, what have I done!
I strolled down to their library and looked over the books, many of which I had never heard of before. I noticed a few stood out to me, so I took them into their peaceful prayer room, sat down on a pillow and started reading. One book was on meditation. I began to practice.
Then I began a book on Centering Prayer. I practiced this as well. Then I thought, “now what do I do”. I was restless and uneasy with having this much time to basically do nothing, to just BE.
So I went for a hike. I tried to recall some of the teachings I had learned in the books I just read. I noticed though, that I was NOT feeling very calm or peaceful. If anything I was feeling more stressed and anxious! I realized that the reason I was feeling this way was because I was afraid. Afraid of being alone. This emotion was not new to me, fear had been a constant companion in my life.
I started to breathe deeply, as the meditation book suggested. I started to focus on a centering word as the Centering Prayer book suggested. I started to calm and felt a little peace. It was then that I realized I had a choice. I could choose to let go of fear and to Trust. Trust that I would be okay, that I was safe. Trust that God was with me.
When I intentionally focused on trusting and letting go of fear, I began to really “see” the beauty that was around me. The amazing mountain views, the colors of the flowers, the blue of the sky, the deer that were lying in the shade of the trees. Everything became much more vibrant. My fear began to wane and love began to fill my being. This my friend is called being present and experiencing God!
I got back to my room energized. Then I looked at the clock and only 4 hours had passed. I still had 3 DAYS to go! My energy started to seep away.
I began rummaging around in my “things to do while on a silent retreat” bag. I decided painting would be a good thing to do so I found a nice bright spot in my room and began. The hike I had taken earlier was so refreshing and the sunflowers were in full bloom, bright and happy.
After a few brush strokes I noticed another constant companion of mine reared it’s ugly head. Perfectionism! But this time, thank you Lord, I was able to say to myself, (yes, I talk to myself a lot,) “perfectionism you have never served me well. In fact, you just give me more stress and anxiety, so right now in this moment I choose to am allow myself to enjoy what comes out on this canvas. There is no right, no wrong.”
I won’t go into all the details while I was at the monastery, but I will tell you this. I made it all 4 days, alive and well! LOL! Seriously though, being there changed my life. It refueled my soul, my physical body and my mental well being. When I gave myself permission to be fully present, to let go of fear, to trust, to just BE, and to BREATHE, I was able to make some space in my mind and in my Spirit for what really matters most. What mattered most for me was to reconnect with God, to hear His voice and come back to His great love for me. To allow Him to fill my mind and soul with His peace.
But what do we do in the in-between times? Yes, my most favorite place is being in the mountains. However, I can’t run off to the mountains everyday, once a week or even once a month. But I can schedule an hour, or 2 or even 1/2 a day locally.
This is one of the reasons why I am so excited about offering Breathing Space to you. It is here for you to use on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. It provides you with a peaceful, distraction free space. It offers you a time to be alone in a personal guided or non-guided retreat. It offers Life/Spiritual Coaching if you need someone to talk to. And it offers group retreats where we can learn something new, and share life with others in our community.
My prayer is that Breathing Space will fill us up in the “in between” times. That we would find peace when we unplug, de-stress and reconnect with ourselves and God, and by doing so we can give fully of ourselves to others.
Stop in for coffee/tea and get to know us. Ready to jump into a retreat? Schedule a time on our easy online calendar below. We look forward to seeing you.