Finding My Voice in Costa Rica
Show me your passion and let your heart speak to the world.
Vulnerable. Exposed. Apprehensive.
There are moments, sometimes brief, where our fears recede and boundaries fade.
Inspired. Open. Secure.
Like a single ray of sunlight peeking through the darkness.
Kick that bitch wide open and let the light shine in.
Magic lies amid these mountains. The air is crisp, fresh, clean. Nature’s palette pops with brilliant hues. The foliage is bold and unapologetic. The dawning of the day is met with the sounds of crowing in the distance. Thick bristles of straw brush against concrete walkways, paving the way to a new start. Clear blue skies fade into the outline of the mountainside. Bushes, trees and shrubs spill like lava right up to my balcony.
I rise to let the sunlight in and pause in awe at the beauty before me. Towering palm trees sway overhead, greeting good morning as I make my way through the property. I pass the roof-lines of the A-frame apartments. It contrasts starkly with the greenery surrounding it.
The burgundy edges of the kahili plant remind me of the seedling my grandmother once cared for, their trunks slender and delicate. I smile as I know their strength and resilience, and her memory on my stroll so appropriate. I hear the swirling waters of the hot tub. It invites me, and I respond with a promise of an evening visit.
It’s the first full day at the Pura Vida Retreat & Spa, and Day One of the Pink Pangea writing retreat. Today, we gather at the end of a long wooden table on the dining hall’s outdoor veranda. Shaded from the sun’s rising heat, yet bright and surrounded with nature’s splendor, it’s a fitting backdrop and a perfect canvas for our creativity.
I take another, closer look at the blank sheet. It now gazes up in anticipation. The moment my pen touches the page, memories are unlocked. There is no room for hesitation.
Worry and fear surface as we begin our first writing exercise. My new, but already familiar, acquaintances are seated at the table. They will walk with me on this writing journey. Their smiles give me comfort. The blank page stares at me with curiosity. I glare back uneasily. Jaclyn begins the workshop and my doubts begin to dwindle. Her teaching style calm and assured, she graciously guides us through the exercises.
I take another, closer look at the blank sheet. It now gazes up in anticipation. The moment my pen touches the page, memories are unlocked. There is no room for hesitation as I recall that Night to Remember, barely leaving time for the ink to breathe. How romantic this moment would be if my cursive writing weren’t so atrocious.
It must have been the enchantment of the rainbow eucalyptus nearby, the magenta allure of the bougainvillea or the delight of the tropical squirrel perched at my side, awaiting its afternoon snack. It must have been this place, this mystic spot carved into the sloping curves of the Costa Rican terrain. This space of comfort and support within the circle of my new friends. Their encouragement helped push my boundaries and let all the light in. It must have been. For that was the day I found my voice.