1. Everything will be just fine
I was so anxious the day before I left for St. Lucia. I woke up around 4:30am, and wasn’t able to get back to sleep and actually found myself crying. I wasn’t worried about the trip, but I was freaking out about all the travel leading up to my arrival in St. Lucia (thanks to my friends at Expedia and Delta, my flight went Toronto – Minneapolis – Atlanta, spent the night in Atlanta before flying to St. Lucia) I led two WW meetings in the morning before having a driver pick me up to take me to the airport. Little did he know, but that man calmed me down. We talked about everything but my trip really, and I arrived at Pearson feeling happy, calmer and excited. I was on my way to St. Lucia, how bad could things really be?
2. It’s a good thing to shut down
There was a big part of me that wasn’t sure how well I was going to deal with being without being connected to my world, but it was truly amazing. No iPhone. No Twitter. No Facebook. No email. Nada. It was incredibly freeing to be without my phone, only using it to blast tunes while I was in the shower in the mornings and to do a little bit of texting towards the end of the week when I was really missing my friends. I loved living in the moment and enjoying every single second that I was in St. Lucia.
3. It doesn’t matter what anyone says, SPF 60 is my friend
I am a pale gal. I did not want to burn on day one in St. Lucia and spend the trip grimacing in pain as my skin turned a lobster shade. I accomplished this goal with the help of some SPF 60 and an amazing roomie who supported me in its application. Win. Don’t bother laughing at my non-tan, because I’m happy about it.
4. Meghan Telpner is one of my heroes
It’s no secret that I’m a huge Meghan fan. I found Meghan’s blog very soon after being diagnosed with Crohn’s, enrolled in her cooking classes and she soon became a huge inspiration in my life. She was the person that I needed to meet and St. Lucia in 2012 was absolutely meant to be. I’m so thankful for her friendship, inspiration, guidance, encouragement and love, not to mention all the giggles that we share. The trip and Meghan’s talks just reinforced for me how far I’ve come from the time that I was really sick. I am that I’ve taken this journey to health over the last 4 years and that I’ve been able to lean on Meghan along the way.
5. Just breathe
Even when there’s a cockroach on your toothbrush. Seriously.
6. In with love, out with fear
I heard this in a yoga class once and the sentiment has stuck with me and it’s something I often meditate on. It’s incredibly freeing to rid yourself of fear and let love in. I reminded myself of this each morning during meditation and it had a profound impact on my mental state.
7. The only constant is change
I knew that St. Lucia was going to change my perspective on things, but I didn’t anticipate exactly where those changes were going to come into play. After some thinking, dreaming, soul searching and pep talks, I walked out of St. Lucia feeling inspired and armed to make some changes in my life. Not crazy “I’m-quitting-my-job-ending-all-relationships-cutting-people-off-total-180” kinda changes, but ones that make a lot of sense for where I’m at in my life right now. I feel grounded, calm and happy to put these changes into effect as the weeks and months go on. Stay tuned.
8. I have a pretty sweet life
While I’m ready to be making some changes in certain areas of my life (and in some areas have already started to make some shifts), I feel like I’m just doing some fine tuning. I’m in love with the life that I’m living and the people that I’ve chosen to surround myself with. St. Lucia solidified for me how awesome life really is and I came back feeling energized to continue enjoying every single moment. I was also so thankful to be in a place where I could leave my normal day-to-day and enjoy an incredible 8 days of sunshine, beauty, delicious food, new adventures and wonderful people.
9. Make it happen
On our final day at Balanbouche, Meghan did a workshop on making it happen. She guided us through a meditation that asked us to find our ideal day in our ideal life, and through a series of exercises, we determined steps to push past our barriers and harness our greatest and absolute potential. It’s great to have ideas, hopes and dreams, but it really comes down to making them happen and this trip inspired me to keep reaching and working hard to get to exactly where I want to be.
10. Twinkle, sparkle and shine
February is generally a very hard month for me. As I’ve already said, I came home from St. Lucia happy, calm, grounded, excited and loving life. People said I was glowing. While I usually pride myself on having a happy, positive demeanour, it felt so good to be coming back from my trip and starting the month in such a great place. I feel like the best possible me when I’m sparkly.