I’m in a strange place these days, nothing feels right. My skin is itchy; my allergies have run amok. On top of that, I am irritable and sensitive and there is not enough chocolate in the contiguous united of states to keep me satisfied. I am cranky. And why, you might ask? I have no real clue save I am walking through another psychic swamp and, boy, howdy, the ‘gators sure are big this season.

As a long time sojourner on the path, I know unequivocally that this is change, glorious change in all of its Technicolor glory. That much I recognize. I can feel the pulse beat of something thumping at a primal level; the heartbeat of the swamp. This lub-dub is a harbinger of forthcoming movement. There is a shift happening; my internal tectonic plates have decided to rumble and rotate. I suspect there is a new platform of being in the making. But all of this internal racket is agitating the ‘gators, which, in turn, gets my attention.

And I am going nowhere. I feel stalled … yet again. And I continue to paddle furiously, all the while making nice with the swamp ‘gators as I work to stay afloat in the sticky muck of my psyche.

To make my swim in the psychic swamp even more emotionally weighted, I am on the cusp of a birthday that gives me pause, and, therefore, I find myself knee-deep in a heightened state of reflection and life assessment. With this context in mind, I agreed to join a dear friend for some face time with her guru. Guru, as you may or may not know, is the Sanskrit word for teacher. My friend is a long-time devotee and literally glows with her spiritual life. She is radiant and has wanted to share her experiences for some time. This year, I said yes.

I know in this lifetime I am not a guru kind of gal. I don’t think that will change but, maybe, if I can just lower my arched eyebrow, I might open myself to learn something new.

I have completed the online course, my precursor to part one, a weekend training followed by part two, four days of deepening meditation and yoga – on a mountain no less. I have opted to sleep in the sacred tent.

I had to giggle a bit at the packing list as it includes shower shoes, rain gear, bug spray, towel, flashlight, etc. – so reminiscent of my Red Cross deployment days and a natural segue into naming this adventure “Camp Guru.”

Intuitively, I am clear this is going to be a significant – in whatever way that word manifests itself -- adventure. Be it the quiet time, meditation time, away-from-my-regular-routine time, stretching-with-yoga time or listening to uplifting words from a holy man, this break in the action can only benefit me. That said, I have to admit that my inner adolescent is already feeling a bit rebellious and wondering what the hell did I think was so fab about this.

So, this Saturday, at 0-dark-hundred I head to the airport with a suitcase full of comfy clothes and some rather stunned ‘gators that, needless to say, travel with me. We’re off to Camp Guru, where, undoubtedly, we will be exploring the psychic swamp in a sacred tent on top of a mountain.

Fear not the strangeness you feel
The future must enter you
Long before it happens
Just wait for the birth
For the hour of new clarity.

- Rainer Maria Rilke

Author's Bio: 

Adele Ryan McDowell, Ph.D., is the author of Balancing Act: Reflections, Meditations, and Coping Strategies for Today’s Fast-Paced Whirl and a contributing author to the best-selling anthology, 2012: Creating Your Own Shift. You can learn more about Adele and her thinking http://theheraldedpenguin.com.