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Our sweet little home for the week.

Sedona Spirit Journey: Open

BY Heather Zollman
May 27, 2021


We arrived at our air b and b.  If you haven’t tried the air b and b experience yet, I highly suggest it!  We have stayed at so many interesting places as a couple and with our family!  We pulled into the RV park and up to our luxury sleeper cabin, grateful to be out of the car and breathe fresh air.  Deep yoga breaths…we made it.  The manager met us, gave us a tour of the cozy space and offered information about the area.  Hungry, we went to eat, came home and sat out on our little deck by the fire place.  I brought along my animal spirit card deck, travel yoga mat and journal to create daily rituals with.  I told Bryan that I would be pulling a card and journaling each day and that he was welcome to join me if he wanted.  No pressure.  Tea in hand, I went to the deck to pull a card.  Bryan came and joined me.  We had never done animal spirit cards together.  I figure, you plant a seed, and the other person is interested in the moment, they join.  (I did that in one of my studio yoga classes and now pulling cards is everyone’s favorite part of Monday night yoga months later!)  Bryan got the cosmic egg and I pulled the eagle.  Powerful messages!

The sky was black.  A walk to explore would have to wait until morning.  We settled in for the night.  I was beyond excited to make our way into Sedona the next day.  She was so close!


We woke to the beauty of being surrounded by lush green everywhere!  Arizona is desert, as you know.  When you find a place near water, where the trees love to be…it is a beautiful hidden gem.  That’s what this space nestled in Camp Verde, AZ was…a sanctuary of beauty and peace.  We took a walk around the park before heading out.  We found a large red rock in front of our deck (perfect for meditating on) and a simple bench right on the edge of the creek, a stone’s throw away from our temporary home.  I knew they would be special places for me.  Rock stacking/stone piling formations were sprinkled along the trail that went through and around the park.  A symbol of being on the right path.  They led us to the most beautiful spaces along the creek, with endless rocks and smooth stones along the bank.  The babbling sounds added to the feeling of peace and serenity.  There were so many places to explore!

Anxious to get to Sedona, we started off in our tiny car.  Anxiety for Bryan kicked in right away, as there were mountains everywhere.  All of a sudden, the most beautiful red rock formations I had ever seen started popping out from the earth.  Again, it looked like another world!  I had seen MANY pictures, none do the reality of it justice.  Tears welled up for me as I took in this vision.  And I knew I couldn’t talk about it.  I kept it in, bursting from the inside out with JOY.  At the same time, Bryan was suffering.  Both energies swirling between us in the tiny car. 

I had done a lot of research about this trip, where to go, things to see and experience.  What I was not prepared for was the amount of people.  Apparently we weren’t the only ones visiting Sedona.  Didn’t they all know it was OUR time to be there?  A laughable, ego based thought.  The traffic was CRAZY!  People on top of people in house and car form.  It was a tourist takeover.  Okay, let’s just get to the Hike House.  I wanted to get on the trails so badly and leave the crowded streets.  The air in the car was stifling by the time we made it to our destination through backs and forths and turnarounds and finally…a parking spot.  The elevation, stress, the air, it was a lot.  Bryan has his stuff and I have mine.  Air pressure wreaks havoc on my body.  To say we arrived a mess is putting it nicely.  I turned the car off.  I was huffy, stressed and so not in a good place.  We were feeding off of each other’s energies in big ways.  Bryan paused and said, “Heather, I do not want to ruin this for you.”  He was so sincere.  This man is my biggest supporter, best friend and loves me hugely.  He was struggling and was so worried about how it was affecting me.  Remember previously, when he mentioned that thinking about anxiety creates anxiety?  Add to that the pressure of not wanting to be anxious in order to not let down someone you love. 

We had a heart-to-heart.  I said, “Please be open to the healing energy here.  Can you just make that your focus?”

Have you heard of the positive vortexes in Sedona?  The term makes it sound like you come, soak up some positive energy, and everything in the world seems peachy keen.  A friend told me before we left to be aware of the true meaning of the “positive” part.  The true meaning is that vortex energy amplifies whatever you bring with you to this place.  It is not healing in the sense that you simply come and let s*** go.  You come, your stuff is amped up and you are forced to either look at it/be with it or turn away.  Face it and grow.  Turn away and continue in what you’ve always known.  I explained this to Bryan before we left, in the midst of our busy, real life days of owning 2 businesses, raising 3 kids and a dog.  Neither of us were prepared.  I’m not even sure he heard me say it.  He was coming off of his busiest season owning a Hockey newspaper, right after the state tournaments, in the midst of a pandemic that turned the business of ours upside down, like it did for so many.

I went into the Hike House (a fabulous resource), got some advice on where to do our first hike and mentioned to the sweet older man that we would start with one and then do 2 other trails.  He chuckled at me and said…okay (The thought bubble I saw was…Good luck lady.  See how you do with 1.)    We hiked one trail that day with many twists and turns…Broken Arrow/Mystic Trail/Hog Wash Trail.  They all join in different areas.  You can do one, some or all.  We became immersed in nature.  Red rock and trees.  It became a dance of weaving between hikers and bikers, mostly with dogs that stayed right by their sides.  The bikers were amazing to watch as they fearlessly maneuvered through rocks, cliff sides and people.  So cool.  Bryan mentioned before we started that if I ever wanted to stop and meditate or just be, to do it and if I wanted some space, he was cool with that.  He’s so great  I found the plant life to be intriguing, especially the trees!  As we walked along, in certain points, I noticed the tree trunks start to be more twisted, creating a Harry Potter movie feel.  Friends told me that this would happen as you neared where the vortexes became more powerful.  (FYI:  I am so glad I researched, asked questions and spoke with friends for advice before going.  It was really helpful!)  We kept seeing these berries on the ground.  They had a silvery/bluish tint to them.  I put it in the back of my mind to research them when we got home. 

In nature, we fell into a rhythm of comfortable silence, noticing, talking and being present.  It’s beautiful how nature creates that.  Take out the hustle, the people, the fast pace and return to our roots…nature. 

Along the way, we came across a young man.  I noticed he was wearing barefoot shoes that looked like socks.  Side note:  I had been dealing with foot pain for the past 6 months and was intrigued by ditching the chiropractic inserts and shoes I had always worn for something that resembled our natural foot and how it plants itself on the earth.  Also, these were rocks we were walking on.  Not smooth rocks, like…you had to watch your step most of the time rocks.  We struck up a conversation with this cute boy.  We found out his name was David.  He was early 20’s.  He was there on a solo spiritual journey.  We talked about God, Jesus, Buddha, nature, society and that he is finding his way to being a healer.  It was beautiful.  I tucked that conversation away as…look into the shoes we talked about.  There are no coincidences friends, just synchronicities.  Every interaction you have is on purpose

At one point, we came across a large flat rock, next to one of the twisty trees.   It called me to sit with it, so I told Bryan, sat down, closed my eyes, thanked God for the moment, the time with Bryan and said I was open to any messages the universe wanted to provide.  Right then, I felt the need to open my eyes.  There was a dragonfly hovering near my face.  My first sign.  I said a prayer of thanks and was ready to move on.  I love listening to animal spirit wisdom and looked up what the dragonfly stands for.  Bryan knows this and said I should look it up.  I found that it represents change, transformation, working through difficulties, evolving…I LOVE ALL OF IT!  When you ask God/Universe/Mother Nature/Divine Spirit (I believe they are all the same, because God is in everything), and are OPEN to answers…you receive them.  The key is being open.

We hiked for hours!  Tired, dry from the air and hungry, we made our way back to our tiny car and went for dinner.  We were still trying to figure this place out as we ate Mexican food in long periods of silence and tiredness.  It’s wonderful when you can do that, be comfortable with another person in the quiet.

After dinner, we went searching for the sunset.  Long story short…we stopped at many places, followed hippies to see if they were chasing the sun, saw interesting things, but never found a good place for the sunset.  Like I said, we were still trying to figure this place out and I was trying to fit everything in I possibly could into each day right off the bat. We were here and I didn’t want to miss any opportunity!  It was unbalanced and seemed forceful on my part now looking back.  And also, something I had to work through. 

You guys!  The people in Sedona were fascinating!  There were decked out vans and campers that gave Scooby doo meets yoga vibes EVERYWHERE…school parking lots, whole foods and in fields where people would just park.  We would see free spirited guys and gals who seemed to float (maybe they were?) out and do their thing, then return to their vehicles/homes.  It was so cool!

Before we left Minnesota, the man who was supposed to lead a guided hike for us got sick and canceled the hike scheduled for the next day.  I was bummed, and also knew that another blessing would come in it’s place. 

It did. 

The blessing vessel…a man named Rahelio.