This One Life

Retreat at Tres Lunas Resort

yogaretreatviewThere has been much ado about a little book called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.  A book about purging your life and your home to make space and sanctuary for what matters.  It’s worth the hype.  The book is innovative in its approach.  It’s direct.  You reconsider how you live every day.

The author, Marie Kondo, also got me thinking about another form of life changing magic.  Girl time.  A soulful kind of making space.

Time when you get together.  Let your hair down and let go.  Let go of negative energy and fill your tank.WomensGroup

Time we realize as humans that we all encounter the same bullshit that weighs us down.  When that happens, we need to purge a little.  Tidy up our souls.  Start fresh.

This weekend, I gave myself an early birthday gift.  I attended a “Living your Yoga” women’s retreat at Tres Lunas Resort in Mason, Texas.  Hosted by dear friends Aline Hanle and Iva Drtina-Hall, my intention was to enjoy girl time, yoga and connection.  To step out of mom mode for a second and recapture some time to be “just a girl” myself.


I received so much more.  I began the weekend unwrapping a small Dove chocolate candy.  Inside the wrapper it read,

“Because you can.”

On day one of the retreat, it just seemed like a fun message.  Then the weekend unfolded.  Stories that brought ten different girls together emerged, and it made total sense.

Why me?  Why me became the question among us.

Why me to take a weekend away from my kids?

Why me to have to be the one to shift this situation that has been safe for so long?

Why me to find myself battling an illness I couldn’t have fathomed?

Why me to step into a dream that still feels too big for me to grab my arms around.

Why me to face life and death decisions at this phase of life?

Why me?

The answer was in that little wrapper.  Because you can.

As Life Coach and Dream Coach Mary Morrissey says,

“Today is the gift of a brand new, never before lived day.”

Often, we go through our days asking, “Why me?”  Why me to step in to this role, this dream, this next step or challenge in life that calls today?

The answer is simple, but not easy.  Because you can.  Because as I learned in yoga, you have your breath.  The essence of your aliveness. When nothing else makes sense.

Surrounded by friends new and old in this hill country hacienda, I felt supported in “Hell Yes. I can.” I celebrated with poignant clarity for life, because I can.


Life and nature gave us its own agenda that weekend.  In this art-filled and soul-filled place in the middle of nowhere, we felt anything but alone.

There is an illusion that we need years upon years of shared experience to find deep friendship.  I learned we just need moments of honest vulnerability.  Deep connection can happen in minutes.  Like love at first sight. When we are our truest selves.

The hard part becomes we have to seek it.  We have to create it.  It takes some effort on our parts.  We have to do the work.

To seek connection.

To sustain community.

To seek within yourself to share your own courage and truth.

Ten women from all parts, all walks of life, yet with so much in common.

This is no coincidence.  It is the sisterhood that happens in the serendipity.  It is the magic that happens when we make the space for miracles.  The miracle that we are perfectly designed.  We don’t have to BE anything or anyone else.


At Tres Lunas, I received the best early birthday gift a girl could ask for.  The life-changing magic of girl time.  With deepest gratitude to Aline Hanle for creating this magical space for connection. You can find more about her incredible lifework and retreats here:

Friends, I’d love to know, what has been ONE of the most impactful experiences of retreat or connection for YOU?  How do you fit in the ritual of girl time or friendship?

You Might Also Like...


  • Reply
    May 31, 2016 at 6:16 pm

    Hi Maria,
    I love your post! It is fun and energizing. I could feel the good vibes!
    I personally have a girls retreat every year with long time friends and just knowing that we will see each other makes me smile… Reconnecting, reenergizing, recharging energy, learning about the news in their lives and share that….. a little time for ourselves where we experienced acceptance, forgiveness and gratitude. I shared with them this article by and enjoyed it a lot:
    I hope you like it to!

    Again thanks for the good energy you spread … keep doing it!

    • Reply
      Maria Carter
      June 16, 2016 at 3:47 pm

      Thank you so much for sharing this link! I love Mary Morrisey’s work and her dreambuilder program. It’s tremendously helped in my own life and dreams! Thank you for reading and for sharing such a great resource!

Leave a Reply