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  • Writer's pictureDanielle Taylor

And then there was that moment when I realized I could fly...


Last weekend changed my life forever…

I remember the moment clearly, a few years back while I was meditating on a little solo silent retreat I had created for myself. My entire system was flooded with the idea that I wanted to create a beautiful sanctuary where I could hold retreats. I could see it all unfold, the space, the experience, the energy, the music, the magic of nature, the people I would connect with. I sat in reverie…how far away it all seemed, one day…maybe. I thought I would have so much to learn before I could pull off something like that.

I spent the rest of my silent retreat day dreaming and taking notes. And it was during this time it became clear that I wanted to do this with my best friend (best friend being an understatement), knowing her skills and experiences would perfectly round out what I wanted to do. When I was finally back into the land of electronics I immediately reached out to Sarah to let her know what I was going to be up to and to see what she thought of working with me on it. I’m not sure I even fully finished my question before she was enthusiastically accepting!

And though the seed had been planted and plans and designs hatched, the financial underpinnings seemed to make it fairly inaccessible at the time, and I was getting established in my business and knew that I was also in the process of developing the skills needed to make this happen.

A couple of years later and not much had budged on the financial pause in the momentum of this project. Trusting timing and the Universe felt right to me. When, through our amazing women’s group for spiritual women, Spirit Sisters of Sonoma County, the opportunity came up to volunteer to put together a retreat for our incredible Leadership Team, Sarah and I immediately looked at each other, and without needing to ask each other, we both instantly knew we had to do it, simultaneously volunteering ourselves!

Stepping into an opportunity to do this was a striking chance to live from this updated version of me. This version of me who looks for the places that cause me fear and hesitation and chooses instead, to shine my love in those places and grant myself the courage to grow from the moment instead of shy away from the discomfort of it.

And grow from it I did! I spent the next few months meticulously planning and preparing and working with Sarah to fine tune everything. I would be making all of the meals, facilitating and co-facilitating the workshops, guiding the meditations, and involved in the ceremonies, activities and all the happenings. Sarah was rocking it by my side, like pure alchemy, we flowed through every moment just as it was supposed to be, regularly surprising ourselves how everything magically happened just on time, or how we always had just enough of everything we needed and how easily, or readily we complemented each other. I worked immensely hard (both before and during), played hard, and enjoyed the feeling of my heart overflowing with love and abundance throughout the entire weekend. I can’t remember ever feeling so full up in my life.

One of the most valuable gifts (and oh, there were many) was giving myself permission to see what I am capable of. Since the moment I chose to start living in alignment with my higher self and my higher purpose I began a very long journey towards this version of me. The one who completely believes in herself. Who understands her own inherent worth. Who can see her own magic and doesn’t hesitate to shine any longer. This version of myself that fully loves herself. And I’m never going back, because I've realized that I can fly, and I am finally ready to dance in the sky!

It hit me square in the heart that I've actually been preparing to do this my whole life. All of the lessons I've learned, all of the many experiences and skills I've collected, the plethora of education and training, the juicy and faceted spiritual growth and personal development, my careers, passions, and curiosities, my connections and especially my specifically unique friendship with Sarah, has made it impossible for me not to be ready and able to do this with profound love, to do it with everything I've got, and to do this incredibly well because of it!

So this is my call to you. You are magic. Beneath all of the layers of "I can't," "I'm not ready," or "What if I fail," etc., there is the core essence of you that wants you to WANT to sing at the top of your lungs; that's ready to feel amazing just because you are being you, doing you; that is ready to answer the call of YOU, regardless of all the noise in the background! This is your life...there literally isn't anyone else that can live it for you. So how do you want to live it? And if you ever need support in that process of claiming it back, you have yourself here a sister-in-arms.

When I was training to be a coach I came across the compelling poem, What is Success?, by Ralph Waldo Emerson, and a few days ago I read it to one of my beloved clients who is in the process of intentionally and carefully choosing her own path in the world. The last three lines below bringing tears to my eyes as I read them aloud to her:

“...To know even one life has breathed

easier because you have lived;

This is to have succeeded.”

Realizing that the experiences I dreamed up and co-created for these women, literally 'me doing me', seemed to make such a meaningful and positive impact last weekend, that following my dreams was helping me to succeed - truly succeed, in this beautiful and important way. This way that completes me at such a deep level, struck me at the core of my being...

So, it’s with this in mind, I have the honor of introducing to you, Feather and Stone Retreats! We will soon be offering overnight and day retreats, coming soon! Ranging in size from small, more private, customizable retreats, to larger group retreats with heavenly and extraordinary add-on services brought right to you. We are designing experiences that will give you a chance to truly find what you are looking for, to find your retreat.

A very special thank you to my business partner, Sarah, for without her this whole thing wouldn’t have been possible. What you do for people (including myself) is hard to put into words and literally changes worlds! And to Travis, who has believed in me since the moment I wanted to create my own path. He has carried my dreams for so long and I am eager to manifest for him the favor returned! And a huge shout out to Sara Soto at Saint Dorothy’s Rest who gave us the chance to launch our dream into the stars! It takes a village and I am so grateful for all of the energy that has poured into it all. I am so excited to see everything as it unfolds and appreciate all of your support on this wondrous journey!


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