Dangerous Compassions

personal retreat

I planned a personal retreat, to visit nature every day, pray, sing a lot, and avoid social media.  I needed to really bad.  My stress level was too high, and I needed a deep rest.  I looked forward to my retreat like a dog to a bone!

My personal retreat didn’t go as planned, but it still helped.  Unwantedly, I acquired am urgent doctor’s appointment for Thursday morning.  And I didn’t manage to avoid social media–I kept showing up to promote blog posts and interact with friends.

But going to nature every day was healing.  The first day I prayed in a riverbed and got those messages that helped me feel stronger.  On Tuesday we went to Red Rock, but it was raining hard.  I did some emotional / spiritual work there, but not what I’d planned.

Thursday, which I thought would be destroyed by the doctor’s appointment, we were on the west side of town anyway for the GI doc.  So we went for a walk on this flat trail I love by the campground, near Red Rock.  Aren’t the mountains beautiful?

personal retreat

I was wearing lots of purple.  No one mentioned it, at the doctor’s office.  I went in with a chill attitude.  “This is no big deal–they can prescribe things or tell me tests I need to do, but I can say no to anything.  It’s not scary because I don’t have to do anything they say.  I’m just getting some ideas from these people.”

That strategy worked well.  And they did schedule huge, scary tests for me, which I will ponder and decide whether I want to go through with next month.

Corn Creek

Wednesday was great–Ming drove me out to Corn Creek, which is a sacred spot for me.  It used to be down a bumpy dirt road that took a long time to travel.  But a few years ago they paved the road, so now it’s way easier to visit.

We bought postcards at the little visitor’s shop, and we talked to the worker.  Then we walked outside, and I sang a mother song by the water.  Felt good–no other people were around.

personal retreat

Then we walked by the creek.  I’m a riparian witch, for sure.  There are gorgeous pecan trees from long ago, and mint grows on the creek bank.  Right after my mom died, there was a Las Vegas Catholic Worker trip to Corn Creek, and I gathered a sprig of mint, which I put in my rainbow pouch.

Here are three pecans that grew together and fell off their tree together.  I photographed them on the trail.


I took this picture of Ming.  He’s been wearing an extra-colorful hat and scarf that my mom crocheted for me, long ago.  It was a cold day, and we stayed probably less than an hour.  But it was wonderful–so nourishing, despite the brevity.



The personal retreat was such a success, I kind of want to live like that.  That’s the risk of a retreat–you might decide it’s better than your regular life.  Am I a person dreaming I’m a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming I’m a human?  I need more time connecting to Mother Earth.

I hope you’re getting the sustenance you need, strong to do the work Mother God has called you to do.  Avoiding burnout is better than trying to heal it.

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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