By Diamond Crystal
Webster defines the word ‘reset’ as to set again or anew.
That is exactly what I’ve proposed to do in this gift of another year. RESET!
What does that mean for me? A very personal examination of where I’ve been and where I want to go in this newly discovered life of ease.
Reflection on the triumphs of the past year leave me genuinely pleased with my growth and exercise of my faith muscle. I made my solo sojourn to Manta, Ecuador on January 18, 2022. I could categorize it as my mental health birthday. The day I ran away from trauma to heal myself, by myself. For the first time in my entire adult life, I was living alone. Scary shit!
I knew not what to expect from spending dedicated time with my then 59 year old self. I desperately needed to grieve the transition of my parents by opening the wounds which had remained shut tight out of sheer survival. Afraid to open Pandora’s box, uncertain of how to deal with the emotions that would undoubtedly be released, I spent the better part of 14 days in a personal cocoon doing the hard work of therapy, prayer and journaling. Thank God for Manta, Ecuador!
So far away from anyone who knew me or could draw me away from the task at hand, Manta offered healing through the process. Was it the long walks along the sandy beaches of the Pacific? Perhaps it was the sweet tender kisses under the warmth of the Ecuadorian sun. Either way, I was in love! Manta, Ecuador stole my entire heart!
But first, she healed me with gentle ocean breezes and breathtaking sunsets. She nourished me with bountiful harvests from land and sea; held me tight with hugs in the form of smiles from the people of this incredible country.
When I thought I was losing my mind, she reminded me that it was simply misplaced, reassuring me that she would walk every step of the way with me. She encouraged me to release my grief, pain and fear into her crashing waves where she carried them as far as the east is from the west. When I felt buried, she rained tears from heaven, reminding me that I was being planted. As her majestic rays dried the water of my ugliest cries, I began to bloom and feel alive again. I was captured by my awakening, assisted by a complete stranger.
I returned to the states a full seven months past my expected 60-day sabbatical with a renewed sense of self and more confidence than I could remember. Rested and restored, I was now in love with myself and this new life of ease I’d crafted and embraced. To the chagrin of many who knew my now recovering Type-A ambition, I discovered the power of boundaries and the finality of the word NO.
Manta, Ecuador will forever be my personal reset destination. It is here, as I type this post, that I feel most alive. At peace and in perfect harmony with my mind, body and soul, it is indeed a peace which surpasses all understanding. The roar of the Pacific is music to my soul; the warmth of the sun embraces me as an old friend. The abundance of freshly prepared seafood invigorates my pescatarian palette, teasing me with perfectly grilled pulpo, exciting varieties of ceviche, and indulgent deep fried camotillo.
God willing, I will renew my love of self at the top of each year right here on the coast of Manta, Ecuador. Reconnecting with ALL of ME is a priority reset that only Manta would
understand. She has yet to disappoint. For all these reasons and more, I recommend this
incredible place to all needing to disconnect OR reconnect. Cheers to the RESET!
See you somewhere in the world!
Diamond Crystal is a global nomad, travel & wellness influencer. She is considered a
travel ambassador for women over 55 interested in beginning a new life journey. As a
mother and grandmother, Diamond regularly pushes the boundaries of senior possibilities
by packing up her laptop, cell phones and camera for the next adventure. A five-star
housesitter with Trusted Housesitters, Diamond is affectionately and appropriately
nicknamed, “The Gallivanting Grandma.”