I don't know about you, but I have these special places that I usually refer to as my "happy places". Door County, WI is one of them for me. My entire family (grandparents, uncles, cousins, etc) used to go up to Door County every summer for a week and go camping together. It was a great time. When ever I go to Door county those memories and rituals just produce such a comforting feeling for me...it's a happy place!
Womanspace in Rockford, IL is one of those places for me. Womanspace was founded by two of our Sisters: Dorothy Bock and Elaine Hirschenberger. You can read more about their story here.
I started going to the center about 6 years ago to play, create, and spend time with Elaine and Dorothy. I try to get there 1 or 2 times a year. When I am there I feel this peacefulness and groundedness within me. It is a space where I can let go and be creative. I love listening to Elaine and Dorothy's stories of their experiences. I am truly at home when I am there.
I haven't been to Womanspace in about 2 years and I had the opportunity to go and visit the other day. As soon as I pulled into the driveway I felt a shift within...it was that "home" feeling. I was thrilled to be greeted by Elaine who embraced me. She had some things to finish up so I had a few minutes to take in the space. I walked outside through the Lily garden and enjoyed the beauty. I walked through the woods to the labyrinth. Walked around the front and sat for a few meditative minutes in the Celebration Garden while I waited.
Outside at Womanspace I try to s-l-o-w myself down and really take in the beauty that is around me. There are artistic renderings everywhere...easy to miss if I'm not being purposeful in my walking (which is my usual mode of being).
While I was walking and enjoying the art and natural beauty...I felt this calmness and serenity that I have had before while being in this place. It took photos of little things that seemed to speak to me. I gave thanks for this time and this space.
I also enjoyed a great meal and conversation with Elaine and Dorothy, whom I also haven't seen in a while. Driving home I was reflecting on my relationship with them and experiences I have had at Womanspace. I am filled with gratitude for how the spirit speaks in these unique ways...through art, nature, and relationships with good people.
Womanspace is definitely on my list of "happy places"...even better it is truly a place where I encounter God in so many ways. Where are some of your happy places or spiritual spaces?
My happy place and spiritual space...thanks Womanspace! Thanks Elaine and Dorothy...much love to you!