A place to heal my soul
-Melina Gerosa Bellows
People go to spas to drop a few, chill, maybe even to discover a new health and fitness regimen. But I’m heading Mii Amo, the destination spa at Enchantment Resort in the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona to heal my soul.
This is my summer of transition, transformation, and I’m hoping, transcendence. I’m focusing on letting go of the deep sadness and anger invoked by facing my current reality; the end of my marriage, the overwhelming challenge of motherhood, and mourning the loss of some precious relationships I thought that I’d have for life.
Needless to say, I could use a little boost from the universe, so why not head to the woo-woo capitol of the world? The red rock formations in Sedona are said to be energetic vortexes, and there are as many crystal shops and psychics as there are gas stations. The vibe is definitely “om.”
Mii Amo takes its name from the Native American word for journey, and it is the perfect spot for spiritual renewal. The red rock scenery is so dramatic and spectacular, it’s no wonder the Native Americans considered the area sacred. The spa offers scores of New Age offerings, from psychic massages to past lives therapies.
When I get to my room, I discover a list of intentions to guide me during my stay. I unroll the parchment and read:
Miracles happen, I now acknowledge the miracles in my life daily.
I am surrounded by angels that help me through my life’s journey.
I am connected to my higher purpose in life and it unfolds before me easily and effortlessly.
My spiritual path is my daily journey through life.
I live my life with integrity, truth and compassion, which reflects my highest good.
With these thoughts in my head, I can already feel myself unwinding from the nine hours it took to get here.
Gamely, I head to my first spa treatment, a deep tissue massage. As my therapist, Randy, gets to work, I start melting into the table. It is clear that I am in the hands of a pro.
After an hour, Randy gets to my foot, which has been bothering me for several days. There is a strange pause. I’m about to ask him if he’s still there, when he touches my foot. His hands feel different than they did a minute earlier, feminine, soft. It’s as if he’s stepped out and a female has taken his place at the massage table.
At the end of the massage, Randy says, “I did some healing on your foot.”
“I felt like your hands changed,” I tell him, “Like you suddenly had a woman’s hands.”
He chuckles softly. “I have an angel who works with me,” he explains.
“What’s her name?” I ask. As if I already knew that.
“Celeste,” he says.
“Thank her for me,” I say.
I have officially entered the Twilight Zone, I think.
The next day I start my morning at the Crystal Grotto, a small meditation room that has light pouring in from a circular opening in the top. I listen to a guided meditation and get smudged with sage.
For breakfast I enjoy apple griddlecakes and a shot of wheat grass. I stare at the red rock mountains and silently offer my thanks to the elders, whose Cro-Magnon faces appear to me in the mountains.
I spend the day working out and staying by the pool, reading, relaxing, and drinking white cloud tea, a local organic delicacy.
My next treatment is a shiatsu-reflexology combo. After my massage I feel so good that I decide to hike the Secret Mountain Wilderness. I run for five miles, imagining that the red rocks and I are having a conversation. I recall a Lakota saying from the note card left on my bed, which read:
“The earth is a living thing, the mountains speak. The trees sing. Lakes can think, pebbles have a soul, rocks have power.”
That evening I meet my two new spa pals, Lisa and Anne, for a late dinner. The three of us met our first night dining at the communal table.
We discuss our spa treatments. This directly leads us an intimate, animated conversation about what’s wrong in each of our lives. Lisa is having trouble conceiving, and Anne, a high-powered businesswoman, wants more play in her life. I share that the life I knew has ended and I haven’t a clue how to get on to what’s next.
“Get one date and the men will smell it and all come running,” says Anne.
Lisa jumps on the bandwagon. “Go cougar!” She exclaims. “A nice 25-year-old for you.”
Me dating? That’s about as conceivable as Madonna staying single. I am so Not Ready that it almost grosses me out.
“What about this?” I say, grabbing the roll around my midriff.
“Guys don’t care about that,” says Anne. “They just can’t believe that they have a naked woman in their bed.”
“Yeah, but I don’t feel attractive,” I say.
“I think you should try cupping,” says Lisa.
“Cupping?” I ask.
“It’s an ancient Chinese ritual that pulls out all of the negativity,” she says. “Remember that photo of Gwyneth Paltrow’s bruised back? Everyone was talking about it.”
I put cupping and cougar on my to-do list and we call it a night. I don’t sleep a wink.