Have you ever had a vivid dream that you woke up remembering the next day, and as much as you wanted to talk about it or look up its meaning, you couldn't quite bring yourself to tarnish the experience by putting it into words?
That's exactly what Restore Your Roar: a re-boot camp was for ten of us in January...only the dream was a real event that took place over the course of six days in the tropics of Hawai'i. It was SUCH a spectacular dream come true that it took us this long to put the dream into sentences.
Finally, we're ready to open up about it. To share with you what happened. And to tell you why we are doing it again.
Let us start with this picture to set the tone:
Here are Olivia and Amanda, the Restore Your Roar facilitators, on the side of a volcano with bellies exposed after eating seventeen pounds of guac and chips by the ocean after a day of hiking and exploring. We've been through it all, and our laugh lines are there to proudly show it.
Now we'll be honest. We didn't hire a photographer. We don't have before and after pictures. We didn't schedule time to pose anyone for our website. We forgot to use hashtags.
Eight amazing women from all over the country, ranging in ages from 19-55, joined us in Hawai'i to receive the tools for a transformative experience – to take their meow to a roar. THAT'S what we made time for: our participants.
The only reason we are lucky enough to share the very, very special pics in this email with you is because one of our participants is an incredible photographer, and she was snapping away because that's what lights her soul on fire. Exhibit A:
Oh, that's just lil Pegasus, our youngest participant, unapologetically LIVING her life at the black sand beach.
We don't have any glamourous poolside lounging shots because we were all reveling in the joy of swimming nude in fresh water at the clothing-optional pool.
We don't have photos of the three organic, locally grown, food porn meals that we ate every day because we were all too busy getting more toast with homemade almond butter. See, none of us had phones or cameras at dinner because they were in our backpacks twenty minutes away.
We don't have an edited promo video but here's an iPhone video of Olivia making up a song to lure the whales while Amanda B. plays the ukulele...oh oh yeah, we all freak at the end because a mama and baby whale were frolicking 100 yards from our faces:
We don't have any posed pictures of what happened at the retreat but we do have this attempt at capturing Pele, the volcano goddess, in all her glory:
And this candid from our day hiking and exploring Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park with a knowledgable and passionate tour guide:
And, um, this is the sky on the night of our impromptu ice cream party in our private Ocean Vista:
You'll note that some of us wore t-shirts from the free box that the volunteers at Kalani keep for clothing trade, and some of us wore Lululemon every day. We can tell you right now that it didn't matter. Like, here is a picture of that:
Each morning, we literally got out of bed and walked down a dirt road to eat breakfast with our sunglasses on. Not because we were hungover, but because the goddamn sun was about to rise with the whales in the water and we needed to not go blind while watching it happen.
The ten of us had an extraordinary experience, and here are the statements we were finally able to put together to describe it:
- We spent Sunday night passing around individual homemade Hawaiian ice creams talking about sex, our bodies, and being women.
- On Monday, we made giant posters made from a good gossip session where every woman spent four minutes in a circle with her eyes closed while everyone else talked about how fucking amazing she is.
- There is definitely sand and lava rock that's still hiding in our backpacks and our sneakers.
- As a group, we gained immense knowledge and respect about the volcano goddess Pele, reminding us there are things out there so much bigger than we realize.
- As a group, we felt the strength and resilience that comes from seeing a town literally full of lava and witnessing the kupunas (elders) bless the lava – not asking it to stop flowing, but to welcome the strength to accept at all times.
- As a group, we experienced true aloha – when a perfect stranger offers to give you a ride back from a local farmer's market and then offers you all the avocados from his farm hanging out in the backseat.
- "This unbelievable knowledge that every day I stood on a cliff and watched an animal that weighs thousands of pounds propel itself out of the water so many times that after a few days I was almost like, 'siiiiiiigh, there goes another breaching humpback whale.'" - from Olivia herself.
- There's actually a fruit that tastes caramel flan and another one that tastes like chocolate pudding and another one that tastes like a fucking rainbow.
See, we didn't have time to focus on promotion for our next retreat, because we were too busy eating lilikois and screaming like hyenas on our final night while we danced like the sexy goddesses that we are.
In between the lines of our itinerary for Restore Your Roar are the moments that make the experience what it is. Yes, there are mealtimes and discussion times and movement times and flight transfers but in reality, the true magic that occurred wasn't scheduled in. And those are the parts that our participants walked away remembering.
Olivia and I got to watch women of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, and ages transform in front of our very eyes. It was humbling, inspiring, sexy, ridiculous, hilarious, and incredibly moving.
We are so thankful to have shared those six days in the Hawaiian jungle with our very first group of Restore Your Roar ladies, and now, we invite you to join us for the second round.
JANUARY 13TH-20TH ON THE BIG ISLAND OF HAWAI'I.
Fly your sweet ass to Hilo and Kalani Oceanside Retreat will arrange transport to its 120-acre paradise where Olivia and I will be waiting to lei you. Dinner will be served using local ingredients, and your accommodations will astound you as you look out over the ocean during the day and look up at a ridiculous blanket of stars at night.
The next morning, a transformative week of body love, movement, affirmations, emotional eating awareness, feminine spirit, Pele's power, Hawaiian experiences, tropical breezes, and aloha will commence and we guarantee you, you will never be the same. Once you have experienced the spirit of aloha in the heart of a jungle, you can never forget it. That's a promise.
This year's retreat is for the woman who is looking to fall in love with herself.
For the woman who's seeking a grand gesture of self-love.
For the woman who wants to step back into her power.
For the woman who always wanted to go to Hawaii, and has been waiting for a reason to go.
Let us be the first to tell you that YOU are the reason to go. Period.
We cannot wait to celebrate how amazing you are.
Olivia Petzy and Amanda Trusty