Goddess Getaway Yoga Retreat, St. Croix Recap

Finally, I get a moment to share about the Goddess Getaway in St. Croix, way back in April…while flying to Vermont for a family vacation! But first, a reflection on staying present while also allowing space for reflection & planning.

Isn’t it something how just 2 months can often feel like a whole lifetime away? Our personal lives and the world around us move a mile a minute, the only thing constant being change. I’ve got to pinch myself sometimes to check that ALL THE GOODNESS happening is real – and to remind myself to STAY PRESENT WITH IT ALL. Those statements have come to be pretty cliché because we’re all living that struggle, with the constant temptation in this humanness being to think back on what could have been or forward to what will be. What does any of it matter if we are not enjoying the here and now? Things stick to become clichés for a reason – we can all connect over it!

I’ll never forget learning about how to consciously reflect past or future at a 2-day silent retreat at a monastery outside of Chiang Mai, Thailand back in 2016. The only opportunity we got to talk was during Q&A time with the monks…you KNOW I was asking questions! With my early 20’s eager demeaner, I asked something along the lines of “how are we supposed to plan for the future or learn from our mistakes if we must stay present all the time?”. The monk simply responded, “you must tell yourself, ‘I will reflect on the past right now’ or ‘I will consider my future right now,’ rather than allowing your mind to unintentionally get lost in one direction.” Finally, I learned that I CAN have control over where my mind goes, not the other way around.

All that said, I’ve been so engrossed in what is happening right here in front of me that I have yet to write out my reflections from the soul enriching life opportunity of this year’s Goddess Getaway. As a woman in a masculine lead world, it’s so special to be surrounded by women, and to have each other lead by their own example of moving from the feminine energy (ie. fluid, intuitive, reflective, sensitive, restful).

The Goddess Getaway Retreat first happened by accident, when 14 women joined me on Flow Into Yoga’s first Greek Sailing & Yoga Retreat. We were feeling ourselves on the Aegean Sea, like the powerful goddesses that we’ve all heard stories of changing the world. One afternoon, while drinking cocktails at the top of Kythnos, we began reflecting on the qualities we see in the other by naming each other’s goddess identities. My mom proceeded to make flower crowns for each woman, blessing us with her gift at the dinner table, laughter overflowing with the white sand and crystal-clear water as our backdrop.

 

So came the 2023 and 2024 Goddess Getaway Retreats at Feather Leaf Inn, St. Croix with Angela, who attended as a guest in Greece, and we became fast friends who encouraged the other to stay present and gentle. This last one was a more intimate group, with 7 of us women, which made a world of difference in the amount of depth we were able to reach with each other! Moments of profound love flood my memory, thinking of looking around the circle and seeing the beautiful faces of Lee (my mom), Angela, Jan, Tiffany, Tammy and Allie.

It was a mini Greek reunion, with all but 2 having gone on that retreat. I reflect on how my mom and her neighbor Jan became official friends in Greece, and now they are nearly inseparable. It’s quite adorable how much they love and appreciate one another, often finishing each other’s sentences or knowing what the other wants without them having to say it. And then Tammy, who was in YTT with me in 2016, who’s caring nature can make anyone feel right at home. And Angela, who so thoughtfully curated every session she led and is such a pleasure working with in the way that we balance each other out, like yin and yang. And Tiffany, who found me through a mutual friend who came on the last St. Croix Goddess Getaway and lights up the room with her smile and contagious “go with the flow” demeanor. And Allie, coming in each day from the boat she is living on with her husband, who’s presence was so sharp that there was an obvious void each time she could not be with us.

For 5 days, the 7 of us practiced yoga and meditation, ate every meal, circled up to share from our hearts, and learned to move more intuitively. We touched the core energy of what it is to be alive and got to witness each other in the vulnerability of showing up so fully!

I think back on our Intuitive Movement workshop, when the FIY volunteers joined us in the discussion and yoga practice. We shared stories of what it has looked like to follow our intuition, and what it feels like in our bodies when it’s speaking up. I always knew that my mother was very intuitive, having her call me out of the blue my whole life “just to see what I was doing” at the exact moments when I happened to need it the most. To hear her verbalize this practice of listening/trusting that guidance made me so grateful that I’ve had her example to follow all this time. Another shared how the tug on her heart has led her to profound life experiences, such as volunteering at a nude eco-lodge in Europe! It’s by following those slight nudges and reflecting on our intuitive strength that it gets stronger with time. We were able to practice it on our yoga mat, allowing our bodies to guide us into the pace and movements that felt most natural in the given moment—not what I lead or what the others were doing and not even how the person usually moves on the mat. What a beautiful gift when we are told (or can remind ourselves) to BE how we genuinely wish TO BE.

The Intro to Ayurveda workshop by the pool was also memorable, leading into profound conversations of how energy moves differently through each of our systems and ways that we can nurture ourselves to keep us in balanced states. The volunteers joined us again, along with Corina’s mother, Andreya. As we were all slowly gathering around for the workshop, some still hanging out in the pool, Andreya expressed “you all are doing this retreat right—seems like a great balance of resting in this beautiful place, but also getting in ample yoga, education, deep discussion on these important topics. Many retreats hosted here are just all about the mat yoga – they stay so busy that they can’t even drop in the way you all have together”. Knowing that she herself has lived a full, long life, traveling the world and attending multiple retreat/workshop experiences in the spiritual and wellness worlds, we took this as A HUGE COMPLIMENT.

 

 

We had some outings as well, allowing us to celebrate how the experience had brought us together. We had a swim and watched the sunset at Rainbow beach, where we also enjoyed cocktails, cheated on our vegan diet with fish bites, and got to meet Allie’s husband (who shared with us their love story)! The final hurrah was a sailing trip with a live band, where we had our share of laughter and more storytelling, followed a dinner out. We all agreed that FLI plant-based food is the way to go, no need to ever eat out when staying there!

 

 

As expected, Ryan and Corina were welcoming, educational, and supportive! Ryan led us on a property tour, where we learned about the floral and history of the surrounding area, got to enjoy warm rain falling on our skin, and even witnessed a hummingbird feeding on the blooming flowers! And Corina educated us on the health of the surrounding coral reef and restoration projects they have begun in the community to maintain the healthy sea life that we had the pleasure of connecting with via snorkeling and scuba diving.

 

 

It really is such a magical place which I’m so grateful to Angela for introducing me to! I’m honestly not sure right now whether a FLI retreat is an option for next year (so many possibilities!), but it will definitely happen again soon, and I’m feeling like everyone needs to be invited next time around!

But ladies, don’t worry, we’ll have another Goddess Getaway soon…I’ve had requests for another boating trip, maybe around the Bahamas. Any takers there or other suggestions?

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Finally, I get a moment to share about the Goddess Getaway in St. Croix, way back in April…while flying to Vermont for a family vacation! But first, a reflection on staying present while also allowing space for reflection & planning.

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