Set in a beautiful environment of mountains, bush and birdlife, I'm blessed to have participated in 'Growth through Trauma Retreat' held at Ocean View, facilitated by Linda Conyard. The Retreat was held over 5 days and during this time I truly did grow!
I am 68 years of age and for much of my life I suffered from unresolved grief and complex trauma brought about by the death of my Mother when aged 12, followed by sexual and physical abuse from my father which began within weeks of my mother's death and continued until I reached the age of 17 years. I had suicidal tendencies and struggled with my spirituality. I had no direction, believing I had lost my way and I had a sense of hopelessness. The 5 days of Retreat were a well-balanced mixture of working through the pain of the trauma, discovering my life's purpose, becoming 'unstuck' in matters which had me bound, understanding what gets in the way of achieving my desires, and appreciating the value of gentleness and love of myself.
I'm now aware how the impact of trauma has played out in my life. It followed a pattern, reflected by years of living an existence of bearing responsibilities which were way beyond my tender years, of being misunderstood, of being voiceless, of reacting fearfully to certain sounds and smells, living a 'double' life, afraid to take risks and being scorned for my failures. All these led to my belief of unworthiness, severe depression and other health issues.
New possibilities and hope were presented and lovingly guided by the skilful hands of Linda. I was exposed to amazing insights and became aware of the triggers to the trauma response. I was given tools to recognise these signs and work with them. I was nurtured, challenged, encouraged and most of all loved by Linda through the entire process, a process which has me realise my empowerment and strengths, and I learned vulnerability is a gift! The fog in my mind has lifted and now I see and accept the abuse was not my fault.
The 5 days included space for relaxation, rest and lots of laughter. Linda prepared the most amazing meals, including her speciality, 'Chai', truly the best chai on earth! I was greeted each morning with a huge smile and a warm drink, a prelude to some gentle yoga and meditation. The days included time for reflection, connecting with nature, walking and soaking in the stunning view of the Glasshouse Mountains.
I have come away from Retreat with a sense of purpose and fulfilment. I have a voice now and have created my own mantra 'I am strong, I am safe, I am adult, the nightmare is over'. I see rainbows all around me, the colours vivid and full of promise, beckoning me to step into a brighter future. Already I have taken steps to achieve this by making known my interest to an organisation where I may utilise my gifts. I'm excited at the prospect of a life freed from nausea, doubt and the minimising of self, knowing when issues do arise I am capable of seeing it for what it is and using the knowledge I've learnt to resolve the current issue.
I whole-heartedly recommend Linda to anyone who has trauma related issues. Go to her website, check her out, you won't be disappointed. Linda is the real deal...compassionate, empathic, kind, loving, understanding....and lots of fun! I am living proof of what is achievable when you put your trust in Linda. Anne
Additional Testimonial: Six weeks have passed since participating in the Growth through Trauma Retreat and I’m continuing to grow, reaping daily the many benefits gained from the experience.
Over a number of years I spent many hours with a variety of therapists and it was usual for me to come away with a spring in my step, full of hope and the promise of a new beginning only to find myself, in a short space of time, feeling disillusioned and eventually discouraged as old (negative) habits resurfaced. There was no follow-up support. The difference between then and now is Linda and the continued support she offers afterwards. The support from Linda is on-going…and that makes a huge difference! When Retreat was over and I returned to my daily routine it was heartening to know I wasn’t alone, that her support was always accessible if there were times I needed a word of encouragement, a ‘lift-up’, or a reminder to practice the methods Linda had taught me, which dissolved my moments of self-doubt.
I’m now experiencing a renewed sense of energy, thirsty for information, hungry for new adventures. I’m calmer now in my daily approach to life, less rushing around and content to just ‘be’. My self-belief expands daily…I am strong, I am safe. Learning the art of creating boundary’s is of benefit not only to myself but includes all those around me. Some things I’m still learning and I know in time with practise all will come to fruition.
Each step along the road to recovery has led to a path of discovery and each time I came upon it Linda’s assurance and encouragement spurred me to continue on the journey to growth.
Linda is an amazing woman, she cares deeply for her clients and truly wants them to live a fully empowered life, free of the burdens which bind and disempower them.
I so hope for others to discover the amazing benefits gained by participating in Retreat facilitated by Linda. There is a way out of the darkness and Linda is your guiding light. Put your trust in Linda and reap the rewards of inner peace. Anne