I have to be honest, after my husband Jhonathan died I asked myself if I still wanted to participate in the Qoya Collective Retreat as a leader. I wasn’t sure if I would be ready. But almost immediately after asking my question, the answer came to me as “Absolutely!”. I credit Qoya with giving me some tools that were truly invaluable in the first few days, weeks, and months of my loss. I had learned the importance of dancing not only in joy but also in the shadows of sorrow. This willingness to “go there” through movement just might have been my sanity as I traveled the globe to bring my husband home. I remember when I tenderly swayed and stretched in my backyard the day after he died. I remember dancing my prayers on a church lawn with headphones while in the Swiss Alps the day his body was cremated. I remember slow dancing with myself as I gazed out my hotel window at the city lights of Medellin, Colombia the night of his funeral. I am so grateful I had learned to trust my body and allowed my emotions to keep moving through me in this time of acute pain. Because of this trust I never thought I had “lost it” or that I was going crazy. I simply surrendered to the wisdom of my body to carry me through when my mind was simply not qualified.
Prior to all of this, my experience with Qoya had mainly been joyful and expansive. It was a way for me to feel the physical sensation of all my blessings. It taught me to be present, be grateful, and be authentic. I loved introducing Qoya to a new woman so she could enjoy the pleasure of being exactly who she is and so she could feel her innate beauty like I had felt mine. I was a disciple of Qoya then. And now I guess I am even more. In the last few months my experience has not only continued to evoke all of the beautiful gifts of before, but it’s depth has also increased. Feeling everything on both ends of the spectrum is not only beneficial to my well-being and evolvement but it is necessary for my well-being and evolvement. This is why I decided to still participate in this retreat; to encourage more of this. To encourage more exploration into how to honor one’s well-being, to get lost in the journey of feeling, to cultivate more sacred community, and to trust one's self that we are our own true guide to our best life.