THE BLOG

Silent Retreat, A Gift for Caregivers

11/25/2015 02:39pm ET | Updated November 24, 2016
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Caregivers deserve a rest in the arms of peace and quiet!

In our noisy busy world, caregivers, those who are giving their best and most day after day to maintain us in body and soul are often left with no place to restore themselves. They need renewal, being so close to the great hurt in the world. A silent retreat ie. peace and quiet is a special healing atmosphere, a unique refuge. The presence of quiet in a silent retreat offers a giving time, a nourishment for the nervous system for every caregiver worn down with the unruly vulnerability of life.

In the gentleness of silence, caregivers can care for themselves. This is a great gift for them with future teaching points for their patients. Caregivers are beaming lights in the dark shadows of the world. The powerful embrace that happens in a silent retreat gives energy for this light to brighten and yes reawaken joy for everyone!

The three simple steps practiced in retreats in silence can be life enhancing, career saving, and teachings for caregivers,their patients, family, and friends.

The first step in being in a silent retreat is letting go. Days in retreat are days with no demands, no schedule to meet, no one to fix, hold, or heal. Silent time is down time. Coming down to earth again, coming back to ourselves is a practice of letting go. We offer all that we are carrying back to the great silence. As patients struggle with their troubles and fears, caregivers in their intimate caring struggle with them as well. In silent retreat, peace and quiet wash away struggles. Silence is the great remover of thoughts and feelings big and small as its gentle breeze holds and moves through our being.

As we offer everything and everyone we are carrying, our mental world calms down. We slowly feel more of our selves again. This is the invitation of a silent retreat, remembering life's essence, our heart. In retreat there is a realization, I can only give as much to others as I have for myself. Time to let go and come home to my true heart of being. This is the wholeness that gets lost in the overwhelming business of caring for others.

The second step being in a silent retreat is simple being. The zen of being present, alive in our own skin is calling. Peak experiences are found in the everything-ness and emptiness of the present moment. It is not complicated. As we let go of our mental baggage, we find ourselves in the power of this moment, free. There is a pervasive oneness in simple acts of taking a walk in nature, sitting in sunshine, having a guilt free nap, and meditating in the deep well of gentleness within our heart. The silence around us is helping us to discover the silence of our heart. Time to embody more of our true nature before returning to the needy world. There is a presence in silence. This presence is life's magnificence, bursting in its infinite beauty. Peace and quiet are assuming their power again, asserting nature's qualities over the noise of the world.

The third step in a silence retreat is absorbing heart essence, the love. Let's face it, it is our love that is drained from caregivers everyday in their work and desire to ease a hurting world. In the silence, awareness can rest and renew in the arms of peace and quiet. A larger landscape is found in the process. Meditation is receiving the presence within and all around us. Gentleness, vastness, trust, innocence all have a home in the silence of the heart. Simplicity, new perspective, fun and much more are the fruit of a silent retreat. Each person has their own experience in the sacred pilgrimage back to themselves. We are cultivating heart essence. It is the essence of life which is too often run dry in the demanding conditions of what caregivers face every day. Tired of being drained, caregivers deserve to be filled up over the rim with the unexpected resource of their own well of inner peace. Time to rediscover inner abundance! Time to remember caregivers with the gift of silence and retreat.