If you’ve been following me, you know I was so nervous to leave my family for the first time in 4 years. I wasn’t even leaving for 1 night, but 2! The day I left was extremely hectic- a student destroyed my classroom right when I had to leave to bring Juliana to her preschool screening which was already giving me enough anxiety because she is growing up…then I had to leave straight from school to meet my friend so we could make it in time for check in and our massages. Of course we had to drive in a Nor’easter I’m talking crazy wind, snow squalls, rain, and poor visibility. Talk about going from 100mph to 20mph.
I didn’t know what to expect, but my friend went before and she assured me I would instantly feel euphoric. She didn’t lie. We pulled up Friday night in the pouring snow and I literally felt relaxed. Yes, I missed my kids, but I felt free. I felt like a real adult and for once, I felt totally relaxed because I wasn’t worrying about my kids, the mess they just made, if they will sleep tonight, will Howie be stressed when he gets home, when I will be done with all the IEP’s, etc. I had to force myself to let go out all those thoughts of course, but I did and it was easier than I thought. Kripalu is an old monk monetary. It’s a big brick building that mimics a college dorm in the middle of the mountains, with healing gardens, beautiful views, amazing food, and a spiritual sensation wherever you go.
My friend and I got massages right when we got there and it was ahhh, a little out of my comfort zone. But again, I had to let go of that control of not knowing. I have a masseuse that I religiously go to at home (shout out to Dru) and she is amazing. I kind of get nervous getting a massage from someone else, nevermind being at a yoga retreat/hippie town. This lady was a bigger lady, Russian or Dutch, nonetheless very intimidating. She towered over me and looked like the mean teacher, Mrs. Trunchbull, from Matilda. She massaged me for 100 minutes with crazy Dosha oils (Ayurvedic) ALL over my body- and I mean all over, boobs and all. Watch out for my milk ducts lady hahaha. She was professional, as every single employee at Kripalu is- and they know their stuff to the tee. She spent 25 minutes dousing my hair in a grounding Dosha oil. It was so interesting to learn about Dosha’s.
A dosha is one of three substances that are present in a person’s body according to Ayurveda medicine.
The central concept of Ayurvedic medicine is the theory that health exists when there is a balance between the three fundamental bodily bio-elements or doshas called Vata, Pitta, and Kapha.
Vāta or Vata is characterized by the properties of dry, cold, light, minute, and movement. All movement in the body is due to properties of vata. Pain is the characteristic feature of deranged vata. Some of the diseases connected to unbalanced vata are flatulence, gout, rheumatism, bloating, stomach issues, etc. That is why Vata types are commonly quick thinking, thin, and fast moving.
Pitta represents metabolism; It is characterized by heat, moistness, liquidity, and sharpness and sourness. Its chief quality is heat. It is the energy principle which uses bile to direct digestion and enhance metabolism. Unbalanced pitta is primarily characterized by body heat or a burning sensation and redness. People who are pitta have fiery personalities and oily skin.
Kapha is the watery element. It is characterized by heaviness, coldness, tenderness, softness, slowness, lubrication, and the carrier of nutrients. It is the nourishing element of the body. All soft organs are made by Kapha and it plays an important role in the perception of taste together with nourishment and lubrication. A Kapha type will typically have a solid bodily frame and calm temperament, reflecting the underlying elements of Earth and Water.
The dosha types are SO fascinating to learn about. You can go to https://yogainternational.com/article/view/dosha-quiz to find out what your type is.
I walked out of that massage with OIL SOAKED hair and I looked like I just drank 6 bottles of wine. I was feeling gooooooood. Amy and I were laughing all night and I’ll tell you laughing is the best medicine for me (besides running). If you can find the time to laugh a little, it goes a long way!! That same night we had our first amazing dinner at the all organic whole foods cafeteria. Everything there is 100% real food and good for the gut, heart, mind, body, and soul- oh and it’s all you can eat! Just some of the foods they had were buddha bowls with beans, kale, etc, a salad bar, gluten-free options, every spices known to man, lavender teas, herb crusted salmon, butternut squash and apple crusted quinoa, vegan brownie (I ate like 5), fruits, vegetables, etc. I could go on about the food, but this trip was more than just food and massages because of course I felt guilty at first- again, the lesson here was to let go and be grateful.
We went to singing sound bowls at night- this was hard for me to get in the zone. Meditation is definitely hard for me. It’s hard for me to relax my mind and body. Usually if my mind is relaxed, my body gets all ramped up and I get restless. My legs start to move, my mind starts to race, then I obsess with trying to force myself to meditate so I don’t ruin everyone’s else’s meditation space. Surprisingly though, once I got comfortable and stopped caring about what everyone else thought, I laid down on the floor and let my mind wander to whatever it wanted to do. I listened to the leaders voice and thought about my breath. I didn’t fully allow myself to relax, but it was pretty damn close.
I also learned that I can’t drink wine before bed because I actually get more hyper and can’t relax while going to bed. I’ll be honest, I missed my kids so much at night. I missed the routine and I missed nursing. I’ll be really honest and no judgement please- I secretly pumped so my body wouldn’t forget and because I don’t want to ever stop because I don’t want my babies to grow up. Cue the tears.
The next day I went to 3 yoga classes in a row. and a psychic I kept up with my fasting and felt great. I didn’t want to eat breakfast and then fart the whole yoga class hahaha. Breakfast time at Kripalu is 100% silent. You are prohibited to talk during morning hours. I ran on Saturday morning on a treadmill overlooking the snowy mountains, saw a psychic, and had 3 yoga classes. The psychic was phenomenal. I won’t go into detail, but she nailed me to the tee and I cried most of the session because of how on point she was. A lot of it surrounded my childhood and it triggered me in ways I didn’t think possible, but wow, was it eye-opening.
The yoga classes were no joke. The first class I went to was Vinyasa, my kind of yoga. It was fasting flowing from one move to another. It was soft and inviting, but it was challenging at the same time. You think about each move instead of the clutter in your brain. It was one of the best yoga classes I’ve ever taken. I also took gentle and restorative yoga and it was way different than I thought- better different. There was no flow of movement, but more battling with your mind to turn it off and relax. With the calmness of each instructor’s voices, it takes you into a trance that isn’t forced. My whole body felt like I was getting a massage or getting my hair played with without it actually happening. I felt drunk after that day. I was doneeeeeee in a good way! Yes, I pumped into Amy’s sink for the second night and yes, I still have milk.
Sunday morning, I went in the hot tub by myself and thank goodness no one else was in there because apparently clothing is optional. YES, I wore my bathingsuit. The big windows faced the mountains and it was amazing. Just me, myself, and I. No phone, no one around, the hot bubbling water, and the silence. I swear everyone needs a little dose of this in their life; no phone, no kids, no husbands, just a little bit of alone time in a serene setting where you are allowed to let go goes along way.
We went into the gift shop about 20 different times. They sold oils, clothing, yoga accessories, water bottles, books, lotions, jewelry, headbands, music, etc. The little convenient store had the healthiest sweet treats and real coffees. I didn’t want to leave that feeling I felt all weekend. I felt renewed, refreshed, happy, and at peace. That’s all I could have asked her. If you can go alone, I recommend it. My husband and I are planning on going together sometime during the summer…hopefully if the stars align #parentlife. This quote hit me the hardest. Embrace the chaos, as long as you keep stillness within. I am still working on that stillness. I am getting there ❤