Chakras and Shotguns…a Woman’s Montana Memoir
Sometimes a woman needs a change of scenery.
As much as I love the Colorado ranch, I needed to go beyond the arena for a few days. On an adventure to Big Sky Country for a Wildheart Retreat.
I decided to drive there. My gut told me I needed a solo road trip.
I didn’t know what lay in store for me on the road ahead but I knew that Montana had some answers.
So I put an air mattress in the back of the Suburban and headed North…
There is a reason Montana is called Big Sky Country. The skies stretch as far as the eye can see and gives a whole new meaning to wide open spaces. I fell in love immediately.
The retreat was led by the dynamic trio of fellow coaches Wildheart Revolution leader Sally Hope, Business and Money coach Ellen Ercolini and Love and Relationship coach Natalie Vartanian.
The weekend was packed with activities like ATVing, skeet shooting, horseback riding, barrel racing and learning about falconry. We also wrote out what we wanted to let go of in our lives and burned the lists in a fire.
I had reservations about skeet shooting because I’m not a hunter and I have mixed feelings about guns. But I was willing to try and we had an amazing female instructor who gave a great safety demonstration.
I surprised myself…I loved it. Turns out, I’m a straight shooter and won a mug for hitting the most clay disks in my group.
Later that night I chatted about chakras and energy work with some fellow Wildhearts.
Point is, pre-Wildheart retreat I would only be sharing about the chakra part with you. Not wanting to rock the boat out of fear that you won’t agree or like the shooting part. Truth is, you may not agree and that’s ok.
For a long time, I was trying to fit in to a specific way that I wanted people to see me. Telling myself “If you’re this________then you can’t be that_______. I mean, what will people think?!”
Talk about feeling suffocated and confined of my own doing.
But you can’t stay small in Montana. It brought out all my different sides. Complete opposites. Dichotomies all playing together. It was awesome and FREEING.
I loved feeling like a badass, driving ATV’s splashing through mud while having crystals in my pocket.
Basking in the solitude of driving thirty hours on a solo road trip, then being in a group of twenty amazing Wildhearted women for three days.
Car camping under the stars, then staying in a beautiful lodge with luxurious rustic amenities.
Barrel racing like a cowgirl, then later that night, crying on trail horse Dandy’s shoulder while he gave me some impromptu equine therapy.
Listening to Dolly Parton, Norah Jones and Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Drinking Coors Light one night and champagne the next.
Shooting shotguns and talking chakras.
Wearing a cowgirl hat and yoga pants.
Big Sky country taught me to expand and share more of myself with others. The feminine, vulnerable, rugged, tough, adventurous, sensitive sides. I’m all of it. Not one or the other. I gave myself permission to be all of it. To show up and fully be ME.
Montana is a great teacher. The landscape here is as diverse as the skies. Golden rays of morning light on the bald hilltops above the majestic rocky hills and wide open prairies. Montana puts it all out there, lucky for us!
Maybe you can relate? Do you hide or tone down sides of yourself so you don’t confuse people or rock the boat? Maybe you like opera and hip hop? Or you love riding motorcycles and sewing? Or you like to ride horses like the wind and experience their healing power in a therapeutic setting? Whatever it is, ROCK IT ALL.
The more you give yourself permission to show up as you really are, the more the right people and situations will find you.
“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you…as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~ Marianne Williamson
What parts of yourself are you ready to share more of? You don’t just have to be one way…BE ALL OF YOU.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments below!
The git r’ done metaphysical cowgirl,
I love this blog and the notion that my own dichotomies might not have to battle it out. Looking forward to being Unbridled!
Hey Mary! Thanks for reading the blog and it sounds like you can relate…yep our different parts can actually learn to live in harmony with each other AND we will be playing with polarities in the arena with horses at UNBRIDLED:) I’m excited to see you next weekend!
I LOVE THIS. I love how you share your surprise and delight at being good with the shotgun. I love how Montana called it out of us, and helped us be ALL of us, not just the shiny pretty parts. I loved spending that time with you, and seeing you so open to all of it. Reading this fills my soul with light and love, and my eyes with a few tears. You’re radiant. <3
Thanks so much for your sweet comment Ellen, that brought some tears to MY eyes! I loved spending time with you in Montana and seeing YOU shine in that gorgeous red dress and sharing your savvy wisdom with us all. You were in you element fo sho! I appreciate ALL your support along the trail and thanks for your encouragement Wildheart:) You’re amazing.
I LOVE THIS. Thanks for sharing, Devon. I love how you said that you can’t stay small in Montana. I love that image of feeling expansive, open & free. Been craving that myself. And sheet shooting and ATVing are AWESOME. 🙂
Thanks for reading the post Laura and for your comment! Sounds like you’re jonseing for an adventure too…one of expansion and freedom! When we’re called to something, it’s for a reason…sounds like your soul is speaking to you.! You might totally dig our upcoming UNBRIDLED Retreat at the ranch…let me know if you’re interested in details about our upcoming adventures and I’ll put you on the list:) Yeehaaw!
This is SO gorgeous Devon. It was so wonderful spending quality time with you and seeing you blossom into ALL of you! XOXOXO
awww Natalie, thank YOU for reading and commenting tarot goddess! I loved spending time in your beautiful energy and aura in MT and I appreciate ALL your support and wisdom. I can’t wait for our trails to cross again SOON hopefully (maybe CO?!) XO
I love this! I very much feel this way as a veggie-eating, yoga practicing, ‘cowgirl’. Thanks for sharing. 🙂
Thanks for your note and I love your “veggie-eating, yoga-practicing, cowgirl” description…AWESOME!! It sounds like you can relate with the polar opposite lifestyle 🙂 Yeehaw and Namaste!