Signs of Rocks and Bees, A Wild Story about Asking & Receiving

How often do you stop and pay attention to the environment around you? Or better yet, how often do you pay attention to signs or patterns in your life?

labyrinth at  six eagles haven retreat center  in mesa, colorado

labyrinth at six eagles haven retreat center in mesa, colorado

I don’t know about you, but for me, I am in my head a lot. I tend to overthink, over-analyze, and pretty much drive myself (and others) crazy when it comes to making decisions or large commitments, or when I’m feeling lost in an area of life. The more I am in my head, the more frustrated and irritated I get. Luckily, I’ve done enough work in this area so I don’t let it linger too long. I try to remember that there’s always a choice. I can continue to allow myself to go through the cycle/turmoil or I can choose to do something about it.

There is so much power in choosing to move through the frustration and allow awareness and insight to step in.

I’ve spent the past 6 months visioning what it is that I’m meant to create at this stage in my life. I’ve gone from idea to idea inspired and fearful of taking a chance on myself. I’ve felt scattered and worried that others see me and my ideas this way. It wasn’t until recently that I could see that everything I’ve been putting out there is actually coming together to create a beautiful brand and offering.

All of the dreaming and visioning was planting a seed that I wasn’t ready to see until recently.

A couple weeks ago I took a trip to Colorado to visit my coach and dear friend, Allison. For me, Allison is a constant rock in my life and beautiful example of what it is to ask, surrender, and receive what comes. About 2 years ago, Allison got a vision for opening a retreat center in Colorado. She happened to be in Grand Junction and fell in love with the area. Fast forward to Fall of 2018 and she got word that a condo was opening in the area so she and her husband packed up their house and moved from Texas to Colorado. They had planned on moving in April, but jumped on the move when the opportunity came available. When they arrived they immediately began scoping out land for their retreat center. They thought they might have to buy land and build it from the ground up. Well, as you can guess, signs continued to show up, and they were presented with a retreat center that was already built and ready to go, and on the most beautiful piece of land with the mountains in the distance.

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I had plans to go on a trip in Mid-May with a couple friends of mine. We were planning on going to San Francisco until I saw a post from Allison inviting people to come to her new retreat center and help get it ready for opening. I immediately texted my friends and told them this is where we were meant to go. A week later we were in Colorado in the most serene place gathering rocks to place throughout a labyrinth. It was a lot of hard, manual labor, and one of the most therapeutic and spiritual experiences I’ve had. When I was gathering rocks, I selected each rock with intention and knew that each one had a special place within the labyrinth.

When I’m in nature, my awareness is heightened. It’s like I’m experiencing creation and all its beauty for the first time.

I try and pay attention to signs and messages when I’m in nature. I believe when you’re present and open to signs and miracles, there’s always something to be seen and learned. I picked up a rock and there was a bee’s nest attached to it, and out flew a pretty yellow bee. Later I was moving more rocks and picked up another and there was another bee. I was sharing this with Allison and she said they don’t see bees in that area much. So for me, I knew I it was meant for me to see. Bees symbolize productivity and hard work.

It was a sign that change is coming and that it’s time to put in the hard work to build what I’ve been envisioning.

After Colorado, I headed to California for a retreat focused on amplifying a retreat based business. As it goes with most retreats I attend, I was excited and fired up on day 1, and in a funk on day 2. As transformation begins to settle in and new awareness is exposed, lots of emotions will come into play. I found myself in a scattered space again—feeling hopeful at what I wanted to create while also in disbelief that it wouldn’t happen. I was also feeling anxious.

On the afternoon of day 2, our incredible retreat leader, Darla, told us of a year-long coaching program to support our businesses and personal growth. While she was sharing about the program, my stomach was in knots and I was feeling tense. I immediately got in my head about it and was telling myself that my body was signaling me not to do it. I didn’t need another program; I needed to take action and get started with all of the resources and information I already had within me. And while that is true, I do have everything I need within me, there was something unsettling about saying no. Just like clockwork, my indecisive ways came into play. I found myself in angst and not wanting to make a commitment. I skipped going to dinner with the other retreat attendees that night and spent all of my energy tuning into my head and listening to all of its noise.

Years ago, I was sitting in a meeting with my former coworkers. We were talking about my fears around commitment and how I was always waiting for something better to come along rather than seeing what was right in front of me. I remember my boss saying that if I was on a sinking boat and a rescue boat came to save me, I would let it pass. I’d say “No, I’m okay. A helicopter is coming to get me.” While that could be true (I do always look for the best in situations…), the point is that I often overlook what’s right in front of me. I spend so much energy trying to find the best solution rather than getting still, quiet, and asking for the best solution to be shown to me.

I ended up waking in the middle of the night and could not go back to sleep. My mind was racing and I kept feeling anxious. When the sun finally came up, I decided to get up and walk down to the beach to watch the sunrise. I had spent the night before talking to one of my best friends about this program and how I wasn’t going to do it. I thought that by going down to the beach, I’d be able to let go of my angst and be at peace with my decision. But I was still in my head and resisting quieting my mind. I called my other best friend and again talked through my indecision. I went back to the room to get ready for our last day of the retreat.

During the first part of the morning, Darla shared a story with us about one of the first times she was up against a big decision about investing in herself and her business. She had experienced a visceral reaction to signing up and knew it was fear standing in her way rather than her body signaling not to do it. That was what I needed to hear. It wasn’t that my body was telling me not to do this program, it was fear. I was up against something bigger than me; something that could support my ideas and turn them into action. And then I realized something even greater.

It wasn’t the program; it was me believing that I wasn’t worth investing in myself.

And just like that it was as if everything I had been building or dreaming was in front of me, and I didn’t believe that I was worthy of receiving any of it. And while I know logically that isn’t true, internally, it’s what I believed and carried with me in all areas of my life—building a business, dating, putting myself out there.

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We did a short meditation to prep us for a releasing ceremony at the beach. The team had collected a handful of rocks and placed them on a table in the back. Darla invited us to tune into our awareness and become present to something that we were ready to release. After the meditation, I wrote down that I was “no longer available for not being able to make decisions” and that I was giving up making myself wrong about choices I’ve made. I smiled and thought, “This is great! I’ll gladly release these things.

We walked to the back of the room and each selected a rock. I immediately saw my rock. It was white, round, and slightly larger than the other rocks. As I reached down to pick up my rock, a new thought came to me. “It’s time to give up the conversation that you’re not worth it.” It was crystal clear that in order for me to expand and own who I am, I must give up the story of not being worth it. I picked up my rock and headed out the door.

While walking down to the beach, I noticed that the group was way ahead of me. And I realized that I often do that in group situations without intentionally meaning to. I give myself space to be alone so I can focus on my energy and no one else’s. I prayed and asked for clarity on my walk down. I was ready to release this story and wanted to be open for something new to reveal itself. I held my rock and looked up and said, “Okay God. Give me a sign. If I’m meant to do this program, just give me a sign.

One by one we each walked up to the water and released our rocks and what no longer served us into the ocean. When it was my turn, I walked up to the water with a readiness to release this lie. I threw my rock forward and yelled, “I’M F**ING WORTH IT!!And in the ocean went my rock and 3 bracelets that I was wearing on my wrist. And they weren’t just any 3 bracelets—they were my bracelets that I wore everyday. One bracelet was from the first meditation retreat in Guatemala that showed me that it was time to stop playing safe and quit my decade long career; the second bracelet was from completing Yoga Teacher Training; and the third was from a retreat in Mexico that got me to commit to my dreams and book a one way ticket to Thailand to start my nomadic journey.

Photo taken by  Brandy Setzer Photography , Peru 2018; Pictured are my 3 bracelets above my bamboo needle tattoo symbolizing surrender

Photo taken by Brandy Setzer Photography, Peru 2018; Pictured are my 3 bracelets above my bamboo needle tattoo symbolizing surrender

I stood there stunned by what had just happened.

Tears immediately began to fall down my face as I realized that my beloved bracelets were in the ocean. Everyone ran up and said “We’ll go get them for you!” I laughed and said they were gone. There was no way to retrieve them. They had dispersed in 3 separate areas far into the ocean. I looked back at my group and said, “No. They were meant to go.” And I knew in that instance what I was meant to do. I had asked for a sign and it could not have been any clearer. This was one time where I was not going to wait any longer for a helicopter to come rescue me.

One of the coaches gave me a hug and held my wrist and told me I was making space for something new. And I looked down and could see my tattoo that symbolized surrender.

It was time for me to give up control and trust what is to come.

After I signed up for the program, I immediately felt a wave of calm and peace come over me. I guess that’s what it feels like to surrender and let go of trying to control everything myself. I can’t make up any of what happened, and I will forever remember the experiences I had in Colorado and on the beach that day. I have no idea what the future holds or what my life will look like a month from now or even a year when this program is complete.

My new bracelet symbolizing new beginnings

My new bracelet symbolizing new beginnings