Thursday, July 27 2023 10:11

Rekindling Your Glow

Written by Emily Hart
The Owl’s Nest. Photo: Alena Vasko

At the crest of a lavender-covered hill, 20 people rested after a nature walk. They scribbled and doodled in pretty journals. Carried by a perfumed breeze, a wooden flute’s melody invited them to wander to The Owl’s Nest — an indoor space of light, wood and stone in a renovated historic barn. There the group engaged in yoga and dance-inspired movement before meditating or sleeping to a sound bath of crystal singing bowls. Taking a pause from life’s frenetic pace, they slowed to connect with each other and reconnect with more serene selves.

Originators of the half-day retreat were Charlotte Rosen, of Movement Designed to Feel Good and keeper of The Owl’s Nest; Ruthie Kølle, clinical and folk herbalist and owner of Mother Hylde; and Carol Metzker, sound therapist and longtime advocate for survivors of trauma.

Charlotte Rosen

Sensitive to the impact of stress on the body, mind and spirit, the group discussed recent observations, concluding individuals and the community seemed overwhelmed, unfocused and disconnected from themselves and others. People struggled with exhaustion, loneliness and loss at degrees similar to pain carried by survivors of trauma — as though they’d lost some of their light. The outcome of that conversation was special collaborative sessions to help community members rekindle their glow.

Carol Metzker

This summer organizers began offering half-day escapes and shorter sessions designed to bring about relief and wellness. Mini-retreats invite participants’ senses and muscles to reawaken, move and bring a unified self back to the present.

Ruthie Kølle

Research supports that there are many health benefits from the events’ activities. Taking a break — even a short one — is beneficial. For example, the National Institutes of Health found yoga improves mental/emotional health, sleep and balance. Being in nature reduces blood pressure, heart rate and muscle tension (University of Minnesota). And Harvard Medical School’s “Music as Medicine” shows how music can improve mood, memory, balance and coordination, as well as decrease heart and breathing rates, blood pressure and anxiety.

Do participants focus on blood pressure and heart rate or simply enjoy the respite? “One thing is certain,” says Metzker. “Everyone leaves with a glow.”

Learn more at Movement Designed to Feel Good,