Coming Home: Building Resilience in a Time of Uncertainty

An Online Retreat to Support You in This Moment

This retreat has yet to be rescheduled

Five Online Sessions over Three Days

If you would like to register your interest for future online retreats, please complete the form below.

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, all of my in-person retreats have been temporarily suspended. This page will always have the most up-to-date information about their availability. You can scroll to the bottom of this page to sign up to be notified about future opportunities to write and travel with me in person.

In the meantime, to learn about my online offerings during the pandemic, you can go to this page.

As the coronavirus continues to upend our world, people are asking themselves:

  • How am I adjusting to the reality that this whole thing is not just going away?
  • What are the new stresses, challenges and rewards in my pandemic world-and how am I coping with them?
  • How am I dealing with all the contradictory information coming toward me?
  • How am I dealing with ongoing separation from people I love?
  • How am I balancing my unmet needs for connection with my desire to stay safe?
  • How am I handling differences with friends and family whose perspective and responses to this pandemic aren't the same as mine?
  • How is this pandemic changing me-and how do I feel about those changes?
  • What are my hopes and fears for the world?

Hello.

I'm Laura Davis, six-time author who teaches writing as a tool for transformation around the world. In response to this pandemic, I've created an online retreat to help people find their equilibrium, tap their inner resources, and find resilience as we all face a tsunami of change, uncertainty and loss.

I've offered this retreat twice so far, on a sliding scale from $400 all the way to free. I didn't want money to be an obstacle for anyone to attend. The first two gatherings were remarkable and life affirming.

Now I'm offering the Coming Home retreat for a third time, with all new material, designed to meet the zeitgeist of this moment-as the pandemic stretches into its third month.

This online retreat spans a three-day weekend and includes five three-hour sessions, integrating writing and sharing in community, yoga, mindfulness meditation, resilience training, and exercises to open the heart.

Sessions are videotaped so if you can't make them all, you can catch them on the replay.

People from all over the world have attended and the evaluations at the end have been filled with gratitude and appreciation:

As the creator of the retreat, I, too, was blown away by the intimacy and deep heartfelt connection that occurred online. People left feeling stronger and more resilient, less isolated and more connected, better prepared to weather the long haul of an unknown future.

The retreat provided such a beacon the first two times, I'm going to offer it again-with completely revised content to address new challenges we're facing as we more deeper into this time of upheaval, uncertainty and change.

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Road in the field against the sunrise background with nature tree.Beautiful landscape for adventure travel.Vintage tone.

"This workshop was a perfect life-raft in a trying time. I feel reset in ways I did not think were possible."

"Coming Home was a rich alive abundant circle of kindness during this dark time filled with vast uncertainty."

"Your retreat opened my heart. I found love inside myself instead of fear. I found gratitude and blessing and the belief that I can weather this storm. The retreat was filled with good-hearted people who came together in respect and love. I grieved when it was over because I live alone. But now a day later, I don't feel alone because they are all with me. The retreat opened a door for me for living in a new way."

"A much-needed respite from the constant bombardment of frightening developments in our rapidly changing world. I was skeptical that a retreat could work without the luxury of going away to a beautiful place set apart from the tensions of our everyday world. But miraculously, Laura and her team skillfully created that place of quiet tranquility, right in our own living spaces. I was comforted, encouraged, challenged and supported throughout the whole weekend."

"I came into the weekend feeling anxious, isolated, not sleeping well. I left with a sense of connection to the other inhabitants of the earth and with tools for the immediate future. Sharing with other participants was nurturing. It was time well spent."

This retreat has yet to be rescheduled

Five Online Sessions over Three Days

How Can This Retreat Help Me Now?

Our ability to stay in our bodies and anchor ourselves in the midst of disruption and uncertainty are essential skills in the days of Covid-19. Think of Coming Home as a way station, a place to stop and reflect, a time-out for community and self-expression in the midst of an evolving crisis that is moving from the emergency stage to the chronic stage.

Many of us are asking, "When will things just go back to the way they used to be?"

That isn't happening anytime soon.

As the pandemic enters its third month, we are facing different stresses and new strains. And also, new opportunities.

As we move deeper into this time of uncertainty we need to develop new skills, new ways to cope, new inner and outer resources. We need to tap our deep creativity and find new ways to connect with each other-an essential human need.

This workshop will provide you with the opportunity to do all of that.

Writing is like alchemy. The opportunity to discover and express what's in your heart and on your mind-and to be heard-is transformative and brings deep renewal. Writing is a powerful tool for healing, and you definitely do not need to consider yourself "a writer" to participate in this retreat. Beginners are perfectly welcome.

In addition to writing, this retreat will include yoga, mindfulness and resilience training: a balanced array of teachings to connect you with your body, mind and heart.

Coming Home will give you the chance to explore what all of this uncertainty and change means in your life at this time. In this moment.

You will walk away feeling grounded, heard, and connected with your own deepest resources.

At Coming Home, we will create a space where self-expression and community offer new tools to cope with an uncertain world.

sitting girl in yellow sunrise in mountains above sea

When and Where

Ripening wheat field and sunrise sky as background

The online version of Coming Home will be held in five three-hour blocks. There will be one session on Friday, two on Saturday, and two on Sunday (details below). If you need to miss one or two sessions, they will be videotaped, so you can watch them on replay later.

We are scheduling the retreat so that people from a wide span of time zones can join us online. Coming Home will utilize the video conference-platform Zoom.

We will meet in both a large group and in small, intimate circles. You will have the opportunity to share and learn in both settings.

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Workshop Hours

Friday:
Session #1: 
3:00-6:00 PM Pacific Time
4:00-7:00 PM Mountain Time
5:00-8:00 PM Central Time
6:00-9:00 PM Eastern Time

  • Orientation and Groundrules
  • Welcome from Your Teachers
  • How to Be in a Workshop with People Who Don't All Think the Same as You
  • First Writing Exercise and First Small Group Session

Saturday:
Session #2
9:00 AM-Noon Pacific Time
10:00 AM-1:00 PM Mountain Time
11:00 AM-2:00 PM Central Time
Noon-3:00 PM Eastern Time

  • Building Resilience and Somatics with Nancy Gertz
  • Writing with Laura

Session #3
3:00 PM-6:00 PM Pacific Time
4:00-7:00 PM Mountain Time
5:00-8:00 PM Central Time
6:00-9:00 PM Eastern Time

  • Iyengar Yoga with Karyn Bristol for Deep Relaxation and to Build the Immune System
  • Writing with Laura

Sunday:
Bonus Yoga Session
8:00-8:45 AM Pacific Time

Session #4
9:00 AM-Noon Pacific Time
10:00 AM-1:00 PM Mountain Time
11:00 AM-2:00 PM Central Time
Noon-3:00 PM Eastern Time

  • Opening the Heart with Bob Stahl
  • Writing with Laura

Closing Session
3:00 PM-6:00 PM Pacific Time
4:00-7:00 PM Mountain Time
5:00-8:00 PM Central Time
6:00-9:00 PM Eastern Time

  • Writing with Laura
  • More Resilience Training with Nancy
  • Group Closure
  • Final Meditation

Teachers and Guides

Laura Davis

Laura Davis will lead the writing segments of the retreat and the prompts will be designed to help you feel, reflect, stop, and get grounded in a moment when everything is uncertain. Writing from the heart, expressing the truth of the current moment, and being witnessed, will help you connect with your strength, resilience, and inner resources. This article explains why writing about your experience at this time is especially important.

Everyone is welcome. You do not need to consider yourself a writer to participate. All you need is a notebook and a pen.

Bio  

Laura Davis is the author of seven non-fiction books, including The Courage to Heal, Becoming the Parent You Want to Be and I Thought We'd Never Speak Again. Laura's groundbreaking books have sold more than 1.8 million copies around the world. Laura has also worked as a columnist, talk show host, radio reporter, radio producer, blogger, editor, and speaker.

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Laura's newest book, The Burning Light of Two Stars: A Memoir, her first memoir, tells the story of her dramatic and tumultuous relationship with her mother from the time of Laura's birth until her mother's death.

She is a cancer survivor, the mother of three, the grandmother of three, and has buried both her parents. In other words, she is a well-seasoned human being.

Words have always been at the core of her work and her self-expression.

Laura has been mentoring and supporting writers for the past 20 years. It is truly the work of her heart:

"I love teaching. I love watching my students find their natural voice and their rhythm. I love it when they find their true stories and discover the courage to put them on the page. I feel like a midwife as my students birth their stories, and I feel honored to witness their bursts of creativity and pure life energy pouring out on the page. Our writing circles are safe places where skills are honed, tears and laughter are welcome, and each writer is seen, heard and deeply known."

Laura leads weekly writing groups and retreats in the Santa Cruz, CA region and online, as well as retreats internationally. She has taken writers to Bali and Scotland, Greece, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. She documents these trips to the delight of many readers in her blog, The Virtual Vacation. You can read a wonderful interview with Laura here.

About Laura

"Laura's presence was very grounding. She created a very consistent and disciplined container that soon felt familiar and safe."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"Laura was very vulnerable, and I feel that because of this, she was able to get others to open up as well. She kept us on track and reiterated the rules, with kindness. I loved her writing prompts. They helped me bring my true feelings about the Corona Virus to the surface and begin to deal with them."

—Cindy Torres, Las Vegas, Nevada

"Laura is an excellent facilitator and led the weekend beautifully."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, California

"Laura is a calm, wise and steady presence. I very much enjoyed her teaching and just who she is! She was the glue that kept it all together, the wise woman who brought us back to ourselves in our writing, over and over again."

—Diane Goldsmith, Nelson, British Columbia, Canada

"Laura was the hub in the retreat wheel, who also kept the energy focused and things transitioning smoothly between sessions. She brought warmth and structure to the group."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

 

"I totally got the 'feel' for how committed Laura is to Community Building as demonstrated in her delightful & personable delivery. Her ability to 'read' her (large) audience was commendable. The fact that she offered a sliding scale and even a free option makes it clear that this is not about the money for her, but rather, her passion to make this work available. I love knowing that someone like Laura exists in our world."

—Gail Wallace, Australia

"Laura was the breath of fresh air that I needed to return to my soul. When the first stay at home orders were given, I went into a 'what can I do for others' mode—I volunteer offering chaplaincy/grief support to medical staff in New York City. I forgot that I needed boundaries for being at home. Writing and expressing myself was a gift."

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"Laura is the consummate group leader—so skilled, so clear, so great at laying ground rules and expectations. She was warm and inspirational. I can't say enough!"

—Aliso Gallo, Houston, Texas

"Laura is very skilled, insightful and right on in her responses and interpretations. Her choices of readings and poems were well selected."

—Marge Schneider, Branford, Connecticut

"Laura is an excellent host. She kept things moving in a graceful way and balanced the sharing of her own writings with the larger program outline."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"I liked Laura's humane, real, calming, interesting presence the most!"

—Vivienne Orgel, Santa Cruz, CA

"Laura did an excellent job of bringing in a variety of wisdom leaders, practices, poems, music, prompts, and all the experts who could help move it along smoothly and meaningfully."

—Marcia Heath, Santa Cruz, CA

"Laura is a great host and brought in great speakers."

—Cindy Torres, Las Vegas, Nevada

"Outstanding leadership. The prompts were thought provoking and helped me go deep. All of the other teachers Laura chose were excellent. And I loved the videos and poems she picked."

—Beverly Pincus, New York City

"Laura was calm, grounded, and compassionate, a model for me of how to be in this situation. A model for giving and generosity and kindness. I loved blending writing with movement, meditation, sharing."

—Amy Champeau, Tucson, AZ

"Laura is a blessing. She always finds the right material to work with. I love the prompts and poems she reads aloud."

—Andrea Martinez, Houston, Texas

"Laura is a generous and competent host. Her command of technology, process and presence was impressive! She started and ended each session on time, managed the flow in the chat room and adjusted the protocol as needed to make sure everyone got a chance to be heard. Through her obvious love of writing, reflection, and teaching, Laura brought energy, positivity and wisdom into the virtual gathering place. I felt guided and comforted."

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

"Laura was the beautiful tree that grounded us."

—Barbard Crofford, Los Angeles

"Laura was a master of creating flow, connection, inspiration, direction, staying present and responding to whatever arose as a benevolent and safe guide. I was amazed at how she created such intimacy in a large group."

—Beth Austin, Santa Cruz

"Laura has a big heart. She's authentic, humble, generous, kind, disciplined, thoughtful, agile and energetic."

—Charlene McLauchlan, Watsonville, California

"Laura's presence is very calming and uniting. Before the Coming Home writing retreat,  I felt scattered, my thoughts flying all over the place. Laura's prompts anchored me and gave me a guideline on how to proceed, which is saying a lot because we have never lived through times like this before."

—Claire Baum, Watsonville, California

"Laura set the tone for the retreat. She was the control panel, facilitating seamless beginnings and endings of each speakers' workshop."

—Eileene Tejada, Vallejo, California

"Laura is a master craftsman in writing as well as holding space for writers to drop into a calm place where descriptive words easily arise. She is a patient attentive guide with a vision and purpose, and a masterful collaborator! Laura brought together amazingly inspiring gifted guides whose offers were perfectly matched to the theme and need."

—Erin Castelan, Palo Alto, CA

"Laura did an amazing job organizing this workshop on short notice, bringing in other teachers who added to the resources and tools to help us make the shift into the new world we find ourselves in. Laura calmly held the space and allowed me to feel comfortable from the beginning. Her prompts were progressive and she wrapped up the workshop in a wonderful way, with prompts, videos which brought up emotions, and, she even added humor to the mix. I felt complete when the last day was over."

—Gayle Slaten

"Laura is monumental - almost beyond human. I cannot believe she pulled this off with a week's notice. This retreat will be long remembered, and used as a model for how we will be interacting for some time to come. Laura sets the bar high."

—Ginny Farnsworth, San Anselmo, CA 94960

"Laura's presence was impactful, focused, and generous."

—Judith Jenya, San Miguel Allende

"Laura was brilliantly present for us all, wise in choosing what to offer, skilled in knowing how to explain it, thoughtful about how to let us process each element, generous in sharing her own experience. She was just truly amazing and wonderful."

—Kat Lancaster, Richmond, VA

"Laura grounded the whole experience. Her reading of poems made them accessible. Her fiscal generosity made this experience possible for me."

—Kathleen Mock, Kensington, California

"Laura provided profound facilitation of our journey."

—Kimlin McDaniel Keith, Santa Cruz

"Laura created safe space for a large group of total strangers to come together and find community in the midst of isolation."

—Laurie Fox, Los Angeles, CA

"Laura's choice of poems to read aloud, and of quotes to post as we returned from each break, was brilliant. I loved them all."

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

"I loved Laura's confident, strong & gentle guidance, clear directions, writing suggestions and tips. I love how she eclectically stitched together segments in designing this workshop."

—Linda Lapetino, Los Angeles, CA

"Laura provided amazing and calm leadership. I appreciated the myriad of poems, songs and thoughtful contributions she gleamed from her community. Her guidance and consistency held the whole experience together."

—Lisa Bove, North Hills, California

"Laura is authentic, open, and compassionate. She selected excellent presenters, and the material, activities, and breaks flowed in an excellent sequence that was comfortable to follow.  Thank you."

—LynneAnne Forest, Santa Rosa, California

Karyn Bristol

Karyn Bristol's yoga classes, now on video, will lead you through a series of simple yoga poses, designed to help you re-enter your body and regain your equilibrium. The practice will require simple props, easily found at home, and will include basic poses you can practice every day to stop your mind from spinning and strengthen your immune system. Beginners are welcome.

Karyn Bristol

Bio

When Karyn Bristol took her first Iyengar Yoga class 25 years ago, she never dreamed that she would one day become a certified Iyengar Yoga teacher. Like many of today's yoga students, Karyn took her first yoga class in midlife. She loved yoga from the beginning-the way it increased her strength and endurance. She was also immediately drawn to Iyengar's focus on alignment and posture. In 2000, Karyn took part in the Advanced Studies and Teacher's Training Program at the Iyengar Institute of San Francisco and became a yoga teacher. After six years of teaching all levels of yoga and becoming a back care specialist, Karyn became one of the few certified Iyengar teachers in Santa Cruz County. Becoming certified required years of practice, study and two rigorous examinations of skills. She has also studied extensively with the Iyengar family in Pune, India and is co-owner of Yoga Within in Aptos.

About Karyn

"I really enjoyed having space and time to move my body slow purposeful ways."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"It was great to have the chance to do yoga as part of the workshop."

—Aliso Gallo, Houston, Texas

"The yoga was refreshing. It felt very important to bring the body into this lockdown reflection experience. I like her yoga teaching style, slow and deliberate, to ensure that no one is injured."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"Karyn is a great yoga teacher. Her class really worked on Zoom because her natural style is to talk through the poses and verbally explain the subtle bits. Her online teaching was quite effective."

—Joyce Bartlett, Marblehead, Massachusetts

"I really enjoyed the yoga classes a lot! I've done Iyengar yoga for many years and was thrilled to hear the yoga was going to be this style. Karyn's teachings were special. I enjoyed focusing on the breath, alignment, and the practice was gentle."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, CA

"Karyn is a clear instructor, and the poses she chose really helped me to awaken parts of my body that felt like they were neglected for too long. Her sessions had the same feeling of coming off of an airplane after a long flight, and finally being able to stretch your whole body after being sardine-canned in economy for hours."

—Giuliana Alfinito, Boston, Massachusetts

"I love Karyn's easy approach to stretching and getting the energy moving through our bodies. I also appreciate her permission slips to go as far as we can and stop when we need. I really appreciate her teaching gift."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

"I loved Karyn's energy and her clarity. I think her work was an excellent addition to the weekend. I was a bit afraid I wouldn't be physically able to do the work without hurting myself, but I could do it and felt safe in my body, following her extremely clear directions."

—Claire Moore, Palm Desert, California

"I loved! Karyn's yoga! It was just right. Just the right amount of breath and movement and challenge to bring up the energy and then let it all settle in savasana!! Thank YOU!"

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"Karyn's yoga was accessible and fun and a great reminder to come into my body every day!"

—Ama Delevett, Santa Cruz, California

"It was great to incorporate movement into the retreat, and Karyn's presence was lovely."

—Amy Champeau, Tucson, AZ

"Karyn had to adapt her yoga class to an online format, and she did so triumphantly. The poses and stretches were accessible to everyone (even me, a sort of yoga dunce!) and Karyn clearly spent extra time thinking through the challenges presented by the live online environment. She made sure we all could see and hear, and that we could use household objects and furniture as props. I would love to take her classes in person."

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

"I LOVED the yoga!"

—Barbara Crofford, Los Angeles, California

"Karyn brought us home to our bodies, providing rest and support of our physical form."

—Beth Austin

"I have been doing yoga for several decades and have recently had problems with neuropathy. Karyn's reminder of how to ground fully during poses was exceptionally useful. I liked her adaptations and her suggestion that a smart yogi knows when to ease up and accept what it is possible for my body to do in that moment."

—Workshop Participant

"I loved how earnest Karyn was to make sure we were comfortable and not stressed. I learned new practices from her to add to my daily routine. She was refreshing and helpful."

—Charlene McLauchlan, Watsonville, California

"Karyn was very warm and accommodating to people of all different skill levels. Her yoga class added a physicality to the retreat that was much needed. I really enjoyed it."

—Claire Baum, Watsonville, CA

"Karyn was excellent!! Her presence and contribution was unassuming and graceful. Karyn is an anchor. Her yoga workshop was a wonderful compliment to the writing workshops. She radiates caring, nurture, and a deep love for her students."

—Eileene Tejada, Vallejo, CA

"I loved that Karyn led us in practical simple postures, using chairs if needed."

—Erin Castelan, Palo Alto, California

"Karyn brought us back to our bodies in such a gentle way. The simple movements were easy to follow, even for a beginner. She was clear in her explanations and brought a sense of peacefulness in doing yoga."

—Gayle Slaten

"Karyn's yoga sessions were wonderful, and very well adapted to the video teaching. The props needed were readily available in the home and the stretches were both relaxing and physically stimulating."

—Ginny Farnsworth, San Anselmo, California

"I loved the yoga segment."

—Jean Stumpf

"Karyn was absolutely delightful! She succeeded in presenting each pose in ways that even I, a true yoga neophyte, could manage some approximation of it. She kept reassuring those of us who couldn't, for whatever reason, get all the way into some poses, offering helpful suggestions for variations and accommodations. Her deep kindness and concern for our wellbeing just shone through everything she taught us. It was great to vary the many hours spent sitting in front of our computers, with the pleasure of stretching our bodies."

—Kat Lancaster, Richmond, Virginia

"Karyn made yoga so accessible."

—Kimlin McDaniel Keith, Santa Cruz, California

"Karyn provided a much-needed opportunity for us to get up and move and stretch our stiff muscles. Under her encouraging guidance, we were able to work out some of the kinks born of the heightened anxiety of these difficult times."

—Laurie Fox, Los Angeles

"I was frightened of the yoga and my inability to do it, but Karyn's reassurance and adaptation allowed me to participate. She is a loving and kind person."

—Lisa Bove, North Hills, California

"Lovely, gentle yoga. Very much appreciated!"

—Maria Fahrner, Bozeman, Montana

"I loved Karyn's yoga! I used to do yoga when I was 25—50 years ago—and she reminded me of how wonderful it feels, even though I only did the exercises from my chair."

—Meredith Born, Santa Cruz, California

"Karyn did an exceptional job of laying out yoga in its various steps; including all of the explanations that are important to newbies like me. She showed great sensitivity for the range of people's physical needs."

—Workshop Participant

Bob Stahl

Mindfulness teacher Bob Stahl, will teach you how to sit with anxiety and other difficult feelings. In his talks and in his guided meditations, Bob will teach specific skills for tolerating and learning to stay present with challenging emotions as they arise in the moment. Living with Uncertainty will help you connect with your body, mind, and heart, and will guide you in meeting and acknowledging what is present within. Transforming Fear into Love will help you transform fear into love and compassion. As Yoda says from Star Wars: "Fear leads to the dark side of the force." Bob will help you choose love, which dispels fear, separation and isolation, opening us to connection.

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Bio

Bob Stahl, PhD, has founded seven MBSR programs in the San Francisco Bay Area and currently directs three MBSR programs at Dominican Hospital, El Camino Hospital Mt. View and Los Gatos. Bob serves as a Senior Teacher for Oasis, the institute for mindfulness-based professional education and innovation at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

He is a co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Living With Your Heart Wide Open, Calming the Rush of Panic, and A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook for Anxiety. Bob formerly lived in a Theravada Buddhist forest monastery for 8.5 years and is now the Guiding teacher at Insight Santa Cruz and visiting teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center.

About Bob

"I found Bob's meditations really grounding and felt my heart open during his sessions which was unexpected and very healing for me."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"Beautiful—calm, clear. I enjoyed his meditation leadership style quite a bit and felt truly calmed by the experience on Sunday AM. Thanks for allotting him that substantial block of time—really worth it."

—Aliso Gallo, Houston, Texas

"Bob was so heart opening and grounding. I benefited so much from the generous time he gave me to process my grief. He was lovely and compassionate."

—Beverly Pincus, New York City

"Bob Stahl was awesome—such wisdom, skill, good energy. I so appreciated how he created a great space where we felt safe to connect and be real and heal."

—Alan Fischer, Santa Cruz, CA

"Bob is an excellent "opener" and "closer" for each day. I really liked his pacing and his thoughtfulness as he led us. It was good for me to experience his comfort in sitting and waiting for each thought as they came to and through him. I found him very calming."

—Claire Moore, Palm Desert, California

"There are just some people in the world that have cultivated an ability to draw people into deep sweet meditation. Bob is one of them. I am always amazed at how changed and softer I am after a good mediation. He was wonderful. I feel blessed."

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"Bob's voice soothed my soul. His style is so calming. I lead meditation for others and soon was able to see that I need this for myself as well. Thank you!"

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"Relevant meditations. Bob has a loving, kind spirit."

—Marge Schneider, Branford, Connecticut

"Bob was amazing. His presence in the retreat was needed as we deal with the pandemic. I was so incredibly moved by his exercises, mediations, and readings. He was a great resource for self-care and more."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, CA

"Bob's guided meditations were beautiful and helpful."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"Extraordinary. She was very helpful, patient, pleasant and kind. Especially considering the time difference."

—Cindy Torres, Las Vegas, Nevada

"Bob was a soothing balm on the rawness opened up from peeling away of the layers during writing. I liked having his grounded male energy interspersed through the weekend."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

"Very grounding and soothing. A very good balance to the writing and reading, dropping inside with his calm guidance."

—Diane Goldsmith, Nelson, British Columbia, Canada

"Bob brought a sense of peace and relaxation to the retreat and really helped to put participants at ease."

—Giuliana Alfinito, Boston, Massachusetts

"Bob kept us anchored in the present, gently bringing us back to our breathing and encouraging us to look inside for everything we needed. His kind, calm presence was very comforting as we navigated the treacherous waters of our raw emotions."

—Laurie Fox, Los Angeles, California

"Bob has a special presence I felt like I could rest in and just feel safe. Such a gift."

—Aimee Harper, Arizona

"I was grateful for Bob's grounded presence, stories and perspective!"

—Ama Delevett, Santa Cruz

"Bob is a genuinely gentle, grounded soul. I enjoyed his stories and found his voice a soothing guide for meditation."

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"Bob was the benevolent masculine anchoring us in the wisdom traditions of truth and kindness. He opened us with blessing and established our place in the sacred."

—Beth Austin, Santa Cruz

"Bob's meditation and shared stories had much wisdom. This quote spoke to me, "Who looks outside dreams, who looks inside awakens"."

—Carol Smith, California

"Bob's meditations and discussions were beautiful. I will definitely be replaying them."

—Charlene McLauchlan, Watsonville, California

"It was so cool meditating with over 70 people from all over the world! What stuck with me was the story about when we die, that our atoms are still part of the earth. They could be nourishing an oak tree or a flower or maybe even make it back into space, where we came from. I found this particularly comforting, and I found Bob very comforting, too."

—Claire Baum, Watsonville, California

"Bob's skill and talents are deep, grounded and helped me drop into the most relaxed place I've been in a while."

—Erin Castelan, Palo Alto, California

"I enjoyed Bob's meditations and his stories. His STOP tool was a helpful way to ease into meditation. I liked the way he talked about mindfulness as being about connection and love. Bob provided subtle ways to change how we perceive even the most difficult challenges. When he brought up fear of dying, the question he asked shifted my way of looking at it: 'Do you want to die with fear in your heart or love?'"

—Gayle Slaten, California

"Bob's meditation sessions and relaxation reminded me of how tense I had become. Having the tools at hand for imagining comfort on many levels was really nice."

—Ginny Farnsworth, San Anselmo, California

"Bob was magical. I want to sit at his feet and be guided from revelation to revelation."

—Kat Lancaster, Richmond, Virginia

"Bob's voice was soothing. Took me away from my tiny personal perspective to the broader world. Brought me back to kindness. Put my fear of death from virus into kinder place: the idea of dying with love."

—Kathleen Mock, Kensington, California

"A wonderful presence."

—Kimlin McDaniel Keith, Santa Cruz

"Bob's presentations were phenomenal sessions in grounding & meditation techniques; remembering our connections with ourselves, with the natural world, humankind, and with the celestial universe."

—Linda Lapetino, Los Angeles, CA

"Bob was amazing. His voice and demeanor so accessible and calming. Very intentional with his words. I liked the way he responded to difficult questions."

—Lisa Bove, North Hills, California

"I was very drawn to Bob by his warm, open presence. His background information, personal sharing and skill in guiding meditations brought us to deeper awareness. Thank you."

—LynneAnne Forest

"I loved Bob's work and his skillful leading with mindfulness."

—Maria Fahrner, Bozeman, Montana

"I loved listening to Bob's meditations and his story. Such a soothing voice and presence."

—Melissa McCampbell

"Bob was lovely. We all needed his calmness, his certainty that life would continue through tumultuous change."

—Meredith Born, Santa Cruz, California

Nancy Gertz

As a certified professional coach, instructor, speaker, and columnist, Nancy helps people live more resonant, effective and purposeful lives. Using her strengths-based approach derived from the science of positive psychology, Nancy engages clients in a conversational dance that leads to greater life satisfaction, personal power and overall well-being. She holds the distinction of PCC, credentialed by the International Coaching Federation.

Nancy holds a master's degree in Health Education from University of Washington and was a Pew Doctoral Fellow at Boston University's Health Policy Institute. A pioneer in the field of health promotion and disease prevention in the early 1980's, Nancy consulted to many Fortune 500 corporations and government on employee health and health-related behavior.

LJR Images - Nancy Headshot- smaller

Nancy launched two Coaching Psychology courses at Harvard University Extension School beginning in 2014. With a private coaching practice based in Boston, she serves clients globally, primarily through telephonic coaching, webinars, teleseminars, and live speaking engagements. In the health care domain, Nancy coaches those who seek to make lifestyle changes for improved wellness, patients living with difficult diagnoses, and physicians experiencing burnout.  Her passion for reconstructing the narratives of our lives and using writing as a pathway to self-discovery are unique aspects of her work with individuals and groups.

About Nancy

"I learned a lot from Nancy. So much wisdom. The way she presents information is very engaging."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"I'm already implementing the gratitude practice that Nancy shared. I think that will be extremely useful for me."

—Aliso Gallo, Houston, Texas

"Nancy is a blessing. There was much to glean from her teachings that I can use in my everyday life."

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"Nancy is an excellent teacher of self-empowerment and for getting out of our old patterns of response."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"Nancy was a world of information and hardly enough time! I heard things I had not heard before. I felt that all of her words were good nuggets that I will keep going back to."

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"There is something so special about Nancy-her voice, her presence, her authenticity and integrity. Working with Nancy has been the catalyst that allowed me to believe in myself and truly transform."

—Ashley L.

"Nancy has been my inspiration and the best version of my confident and authentic self when I was searching for my voice."

—S. Lee 

"Nancy has taught me presence and curiosity, hope and acceptance, forgiveness and strength. I admire, honor and respect her. She embodies grace and gratitude."

—W. Stern

"Nancy is an active, engaged listener. She has been consistently sensitive and intuitive in all of her interactions with me. She provides guidance, direction, education and support that is focused, gentle, and compassionate. With Nancy, I feel safe to explore."

—C McNamara

"Working with Nancy has substituted for at least 50 mg of Zoloft. I am calmer. I have more perspective. I'm reflecting on the good things every morning, staying present, and writing. I'm making better choices toward actions which bring more happiness into my life."

—P. Hoffman

"I would strongly recommend Nancy to anyone who is coping with an illness, chronic or acute. Nancy listens on a deep level and her responses show me her understanding of what I'm going through. She asked if I knew exactly when I was going to die, what would I do? This was a crucial question for me. The answer clearly was to enjoy myself until the last day."

—M. Magid

"It still takes my breath away to think about the bravery and ingenuity with which Nancy stared down breast cancer and put it in its place. She deftly engineered her healing and recovery that reflected her commitment to walking her talk. Nancy's the real deal…all truth and inspiration."

—Chris M

"With Nancy. I feel welcomed, understood and confident that I will build my career and improve my life with a solid foundation. I am grateful for her, happy, focused and energized to pursue my goals. I am filled with affection and admiration."

—S. Quirino

"Nancy is kind, compassionate, engaged and resourceful.  Her level of expertise and knowledge are remarkable; her commitment to my growth, and the soft exuberance she brings to the process, are unparalleled."

—C McNamara

Michaela Sieh

Our tech host, Michaela Sieh, who hails from Brussels, Belgium, is a critical member of the Coming Home team. Without her clarity, calm, and vast online skills, moving this retreat online in just two short weeks would never have been possible. Michaela has generously provided hours of tech support to Laura, who has never attempted anything like this before, making it possible to quickly move the retreat online.

Michaela says, "Supporting Laura in taking the leap to an online environment has been a great honor and joy for me. I first learned about Laura when The Courage to Heal, the book she wrote with Ellen Bass, first came out in 1988. The Courage to Heal led me to being my healing journey.

M. Sieh

Now, more than thirty years later, we are collaborating on this retreat! Trauma-informed practices for online meetings are an essential element of my work. I love creating online spaces for deep conversations, weaving the threads behind the scenes.

A message to all of you who are considering whether you might be "tech-savvy" enough to attend this gathering: "This retreat is for all. We'll be there with you, all the way. We can do this, together."

About Michaela

"Michaela was very helpful and really kept the zoom/technological infrastructure feeling seamless and invisible which was a huge feat!"

—Becca, Los Angeles

"Patient & skilled & critical to the smooth running of the whole show. I appreciated her sweet, gentle nature."

—Gail Wallace, Australia

"Michaela is great! Where would we have been without her? Honestly! And to learn that she was working through the night for our sakes made me ever so grateful. She is an angel for all of us."

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"Michaela is a rock star. She ran the logistics like a champ and kept such a kind, calm presence no matter what was asked of her or who demanded her attention. She was so much more than a tech person. A deep bow to her sweet spirit and humanity."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

"How wonderful to see the person "behind the curtain" who clearly is in charge of the tech. She is masterful and seemingly tireless."

—Claire Moore, Palm Desert, California

"Michaela was beyond fantastic...both technologically as well as personally."

—Linda Boccia, San Rafael, California

"Loved her calm and gracious style and excellent skill in keeping the sessions alive and well."

—Marge Schneider, Branford, Connecticut

"Master of Tech Support and a seamless Zoom facilitator."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"Michaela did a great job of keeping everything running smoothly from a tech perspective. Plus, she had the right personality, vibe, confidence to work with you in a group like this. Not everyone could do that. Great find."

—Joyce Bartlett, Marblehead, Massachusetts

"Extraordinary. She was very helpful, patient, pleasant and kind. Especially considering the time difference."

—Cindy Torres, Las Vegas, Nevada

"Michaela provided excellent facilitation. I so admire her calm voice and ability to herd the cats. She personifies equanimity. And she is also so warm and funny and engaging."

—Gail Ostrow, Bridgeport, Connecticut

"Wow, Michaela is an absolute wizard! What a wonder that she is able to orchestrate such a gathering, and have it run so smoothly. Brava!"

—Diane Goldsmith, Nelson, British Columbia, Canada

"Michaela was an all-star tech wizard. Everything ran smoothly, and she was so dedicated, staying up at ungodly hours to see that we all had a lovely time."

—Giuliana Alfinito, Boston, Massachusetts

"Michaela's backstage contribution was superb. The whole event went totally smoothly."

—Laura Ulloa, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"I am not a techie but Michaela made it so seamless and easy to be on line and create intimacy. I can only conclude that she is extraordinary at what she does, not her first rodeo. A very kind and unflappable heart!!"

—Wendy Ostrow, Santa Cruz, CA

"Michaela was kind ~ clear ~ available ~ juggling a lot with nice finesse."

—Aimee Harper, Arizona

"Wow! Michaela was magical! To be able to connect all the different timezones and have it all work out so beautifully!"

—Ama Delevett, Santa Cruz, CA

"Michaela's contribution to the workshop was immense. She handled all us technophobes with kindness and calm and patience."

—Amy Champeau, Tucson, Arizona

"Michaela did a wonderful job explaining the Zoom software."

—Andrea Martinez, Houston, Texas

"Michaela kept her cool throughout the weekend. She was 'the woman behind the curtain,' remaining unruffled and finding humorous ways to suggest that we find something to do while she caught up. Her sorting of participants into breakout sessions and sweeping us back into the general session each time went surprisingly smoothly—I don't know how she did that!"

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

"OMG! Michaela was calm, collected, organized, steady. Just exactly what so many of us needed in dealing with tech."

—Barbara Crofford, Los Angeles, California

"Amazing!!! Michaela was a wizard, so gracious, unflustered. So generous and gracious. She supported the structure upon which we all were able to come together."

—Beth Austin, Santa Cruz

"Michaela had an amazing ability to assist us. The small breakout session where super. Thank you for her wonderful help."

—Carol Smith, California

"Michaela's technical contribution is the reason the workshop was flawless.  Love to know how she did the small groups. I was so impressed that she was coordinating everything from Brussels....8 hours away! I really appreciated how nothing seemed to fluster her."

Charlene McLauchlan, Watsonville, California

"Michaela was a calming presence. She was very friendly and capable. She helped the whole retreat run very smoothly."

—Claire Baum, Watsonville, California

"Michaela made the magic of the technology work! She was wonderful at keeping everyone at ease, especially when we experienced minor glitches with the technology. She is a technology maven!!"

—Eileene Tejada, Vallejo, California

"Great support! Calm presence! Fantastic!"

—Erin Castelan, Palo Alto, California

"Michaela did a fantastic job of orchestrating the backbone of this venue, teaching us how to use Zoom, making sure everyone was on and could be heard, and getting us in and out of breakout groups. Her calm influence made me feel like it would run smoothly, and, it did."

—Gayle Slaten, California

"Unbelievable how well this came together, especially with Michaela in Belgium. Her dedication to the project really made it happen. Not sure it could have come together without her knowledge, expertise and patience."

Ginny Farnsworth, San Anselmo, California

"Michaela was excellent. She really kept things moving."

—Judith Jenya, San Miguel Allende, Mexico

"Michaela was absolutely great. Calm, extremely knowledgeable about the technology, wonderfully patient with all us neanderthals, kind, good-humored, just terrific. And she was doing it from Belgium! I am reminded of that famous saying about Ginger Rogers, that she did everything Fred Astaire did, but did it dancing backwards, and in high heels. That's Michaela all the way."

—Kat Lancaster, Richmond, VA

"Wow! You knew you were not going to get lost in cyber space with her at the zoom helm."

—Kathleen Mock, Kensington, California

"Friendly and so helpful."

—Kimlin McDaniel Keith, Santa Cruz

"Michaela brilliantly, patiently & calmly facilitated all the technical aspects of the Zoom platform, making for a seamless weekend—a true feat with such a large group, many of whom were neophytes to this process. She was kind, thoughtful and professional in everything she did; a wonderful (and, indeed, indispensable) addition to the team."

—Laurie Fox, Los Angeles, California

"I loved Michaela's wonderfully calm, thorough and peaceful IT skills. She made sure we were all 'hooked up' and properly operating and connecting. She was very patient, clear and specific."

—Linda Lapetino, Los Angeles, California

Fees and Registration

Cost: The cost of the weekend is $400.

But I don't want money to keep anyone from attending. I ask you to pay as much as you can afford. You can indicate the amount on your registration form. If you can't afford to pay, the retreat is free.

Due to the short time frame and the cost of putting this event online, your payment will not be refundable.

This retreat has yet to be rescheduled.

If you would like to register your interest for future online retreats, please complete the form below.

Contact Laura

Endorsements for Laura's Coming Home Online

"Laura sets the most beautiful platform. Somehow, she opens the space and the heart appears. I am so very grateful to have been a part of this weekend."

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"I loved Nancy's somatic work and talk about resiliency, very helpful in these days that have triggered trauma. She helped me understand why I am feeling traumatized and how to acknowledge its ongoing impact on the body. I understand better how important it is to work with myself, very gently, multiple times every day before those feelings get stuck in my tissues."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

"This workshop is the best sense of connection one could hope for during these isolating times."

—Guiliana Alfinito, Boston, Massachusetts

"Taking part in the Coming Home retreat was a profound experience for me. The exercises and environment Laura created allowed me to really crack myself open and experience my emotions more fully, but also provided a sensation of safety and containment that kept me grounded throughout and feeling strengthened at the end of the three days."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"I enjoyed the diversity of the group, and the intimacy created by small group sharing."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, California

"This workshop was like "time out of time." I found as the weekend progressed, I settled more and more into the experience of taking sacred time to be with myself and others. I felt moved by peoples' stories, their struggles, joys and pain. I had no idea such intimate sharing and feeling of connection could happen on Zoom! It helped me to feel stronger and more accepting at this time of uncertainty."

—Diane Goldsmith, Nelson, British Columbia, Canada

"A time to dive deeply into one's own toolbox. A chance to explore, be surprised and connect with many other generous, honest people in a unique time."

—Wendy Ostrow, Santa Cruz, California

"It's hard to imagine that we aren't all reeling, at least a bit, with the dramatic change in our lives caused by the pandemic. Laura's weekend workshop helped me connect with my subconscious feelings that I've been busy avoiding, thinking I was 'coping.' The weekend fortified me and gave me personal tools and emotional strategies that will help carry me through the months to come as we adjust to our changed circumstances. Thank you so much!"

—Claire Moore, Palm Desert, California

"I felt supported and energized by the tone of the retreat, was peaceful and uplifting. I enjoyed the sequence of diverse activities and inputs from meditation, to the reading of a poem, or listening to music, to the prompts, and the actual writing. I found that I could open up and receive something that I find hard to name, but that I think came from Laura's dedication and authenticity."

—Laura Ulloa, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"The biggest strength of the weekend was the safe container you created for all of us to explore ourselves and express ourselves vulnerably. In listening to others speak over the course of three days, it seems like we collectively went through the whole grief cycle in quick succession, emerging from the weekend different people than when we went into it."

—Workshop Participant

"An excellent way to process the intensity of emotions arising now."

—Beverly Pincus, New York City

"The workshop provided therapy, writing and a healing community all in one."

—Alan Fischer, Santa Cruz, CA

"I went deep into myself and my writing. Forty-five minutes into the retreat, a short intense poem flew through me onto the page. Hearing other peoples' stories was like entering so many different universes. Writing with Laura opened me up to so many possibilities for legacy writing, better self-care, and knowing for sure that my words matter."

—Gail Ostrow, Bridgeport, Connecticut

"Documenting the pandemic, and what is happening, was enormously helpful to help me process own feelings."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, California

"Writing with Laura frees up your mind and body so that you can write with abandon. It was wonderful to connect with strangers from all over the globe through writing. The writing highlighted our shared vulnerability, hopes, and humanity and made it as if I knew these people already. I haven't felt so creative and in touch with my true, whole self in a long time."

—Giuliana Alfinito, Boston, Massachusetts

"Writing can be a wonderful salve for the soul at any time, but especially now. In these times, sharing our thoughts, feelings, experiences with others is especially heart-warming. Laura crafts & orchestrates and delicately & sensitively draws so much out of us. I felt extremely comfortable sharing my writing in such a safe playground."

—Gail Wallace, Australia

"Laura's writing prompts are so useful in my everyday life, alone in my home. As I learn to put words together again, the pandemic can be seen as a gift. Time to write, go inside, and create the new normal."

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"The workshop was excellent for these times of crisis. Laura Davis is a very genuine, experienced, helpful, inspiring, calming leader and guide. The mix of writing, listening, guided meditation, and small group sharing was great."

—Vivienne Orgel, Santa Cruz, CA

"The Coming Home retreat focuses on writing about our experiences with the pandemic. A good balance of working with the mind, body and spirit to get a new sense of grounding during this ungrounding time. The weekend ushered in a more positive and empowered attitude for me. It drove home the truth that we are not alone. I feel less isolated after participating in Laura's retreat."

—Denise Monahan, Upper Hutt, New Zealand

"I was grateful to be reminded that it's important to focus on what matters and to think about what I want to be and focus on once the height of the crisis has passed."

—Joyce Bartlett, Marblehead, Massachusetts

"A chance to breathe, to connect to one's heart space and to others. Very worthwhile.

—Marge Schneider, Branford, Connecticut

"The workshop was a much-needed respite from the madness, a time to process, write, meditate. Highly recommended."

—Aliso Gallo, Houston, Texas

"I am so very grateful for your generosity in making this retreat available for those of us experiencing financial hardship. From the bottom of my heart, I cannot thank you enough."

—Becca, Los Angeles

"A well-balanced, multi-dimensional presentation that it captivated me entirely. I loved how easily I was able to 'come home to myself' in just three short days."

—Gail Wallace, Australia

"I recommend this retreat for anyone who wants to look at their experience around this virus, share their truth with others who understand, and to learn how to lessen the impact of that stress on our bodies and minds. We are all learning how to adjust to a new normal that has yet to settle into a constant. It is crazy making and we need to connect with other human hearts so we know that feeling crazy is at times the new norm, and that we are fine."

—Gwenn Correll, Colorado

"I have always been a person who enjoys attending retreats. To be able to have a retreat experience from home took me by surprise. The workshop offered flexibility and variety in ways to participate. I appreciated the 3-hour break to do something for myself that I enjoy. The time together and apart were both valuable."

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"I'm so grateful you offered this on a sliding scale so those of us currently without income could attend."

—Beverly Pincus, New York City

"Laura creates a space that allows openings to happen. You will step into or through a portal and you will come out changed."

—Elizabeth Duff, Massachusetts

"Nourishing & transformative. I felt incredibly, sustainably self-connected."

—Gail Wallace, Australia

"I am so moved. Laura's retreat made a big impact on me at this very vulnerable time. I want to make some changes in my life. I don't have a roadmap yet, but things I learned this weekend will definitely help me navigate the future."

—Sara Guido, Saratoga, California

"A well-rounded retreat involving looking inward, reflecting, connecting with feelings, and then expressing all of this in writing."

—Laura Ulloa, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"I totally relaxed for first time in a very long time."

—Bonnie Leopold, Torrance, California

"An encompassing experience that left me feeling renewed. This morning I woke up and felt like I'd been on a three-day vacation, and I hadn't left my house. Laura's retreat expanded my sense of time and space, and enabled me to try out new techniques to get in touch with hidden parts of myself."

—Judith Jenya, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

"The small groups were always pleasant surprises--meeting people from all over the world, having intimate discussions, made me feel connected to the world again, after isolation."

—Gayle Slaten, California

"I learned so much, where do I begin? For the first time, I didn't feel so alone in this pandemic."

—Andrea Martinez, Houston, Texas

"Writing is cathartic for me, and I appreciated the challenge of writing to prompts, followed by sharing our writing in small groups. I joined the retreat specifically because there would be opportunities to put pen to paper. The small group sharing sessions took my breath away."

—Anne Nicolai, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

"This was a complete mind-body-spirit weekend, focusing on dealing with catastrophe. On grief and loss and hope and community and connection. It went deep and then soothed. I love the opportunity to hear others' experiences and wisdom."

—Barbard Crofford, Los Angeles

"This is a workshop that will bring you into intimate remembering of our human connection and experience. Laura is a force of nature, connecting a group through her writing prompts, cultivation of safety and celebration of expression and in creating a flow of vitality that carries everyone in its fluid presence."

—Beth Austin, Santa Cruz

"I began the retreat hesitant, anxious and agitated  but completed the retreat feeling invigorated, nourished and hopeful. I realized that I am not alone in my feelings and that there are people who get that mother earth is in peril."

—Carol Smith, California

"The weekend came together beautifully. All the teachers were great. Everything they taught me will be very useful in learning how I'm going to proceed through this pandemic. All the information, writing prompts, breaking off in small groups, and talking to people all over the world helped to anchor me and make me feel connected in a time when we are living in isolation."

—Claire Baum, Watsonville, California

"If you're looking for a retreat you can attend from the comfort of your own home, that combines writing, yoga, meditation, and brain science within a safe community, you'll want to attend Coming Home. This is not a workshop where you'll get helpful critiques of your writing. What you will get ,if your experience mirrors mine, is an attentive, generous audience for your writing and for you."

—Diane Kirschner, Brooklyn, NY    

"I was three weeks in isolation, just barely well enough after being very sick for ten. I have been in lots of Laura's in-person classes over twenty years, and I felt at home in this one, too. I really loved the online format because it gave me a chance to also take care of myself as needed, and I didn't have to pack to go away for the weekend! I loved the screen-kill and mute button option because I needed to be off camera at times, yet still listening. The format allowed me to participate as I could. I wouldn't have been able to attend in person, as I was not well enough to go anywhere."

—Erin Castelan, Palo Alto, CA

"Writing helped me to be a witness to my experience rather than being caught up in it; hearing my own words and sharing them with others gave me compassion for myself."

—Gayle Slaten, California

"This was my first experience of doing a virtual retreat. I thought it might be impersonal due to no physical gathering of people, but it turned out to be very intimate. We had timely and stimulating writing prompts and shared our writing in small groups. There was time to share a bit of our personal history, and I made some friends. There was a beautiful sense of connection among the participants."

—Ginny Farnsworth, San Anselmo, California

"There is a brilliant place of safety and comfort in me, to which I can always turn, that I had neglected, literally for years; but thanks to this retreat, I have rediscovered it, and it is now with me always."

—Kat Lancaster, Richmond, VA

"A spiritually restorative, comforting retreat, Laura's workshop was an incredible way to connect with a like-minded community worldwide. It was an isolation remedy for all of us who can't meet up personally."

—Linda Lapetino, Los Angeles, CA

"The retreat was invigorating in a calm and relaxed way. Writing about and processing feelings of fear and visions of hope has helped calm my soul, which has been a bit quivering with the whole pandemic thing."

—Lisa Bove, North Hills, California

"I came away from my time at this retreat feeling understood, not so isolated, relearning ways to take care of myself and connect with others. I had an opportunity to stay with my feelings, share with others, and to write, which for me, is a very effective way to process and be present to myself. The retreat and the presenters gave me so many gifts. I am deeply grateful."

—LynneAnne Forest, Santa Rosa, California

"I found this retreat to be enriching, calming, nourishing, and exactly what I needed at this challenging time. With skillful leadership Laura facilitated a wonderful blend of writing, yoga, mindfulness, calming techniques, and inspiration for our time."

—Maria Fahrner, Bozeman, Montana

"I'd never say an online retreat is better than a live session but given the circumstances, a resounding YES, it can be done and it was extremely helpful. I like how Laura's retreat brought people from around the world together. It offered opportunity for those who can't attend a workshop like this due to distance and finances. I hope it remains an option even when 'regular' life resumes again."

—Melisa McCampbell, Sacramento, California

"The retreat shifted my mood a lot--toward gratitude and treasuring the positive aspects of sheltering-in-place. The workshop reconnected me to my resources; by the end, I felt full and able to lift others once again."

—Meredith Born, Santa Cruz, California

"Laura is a masterful facilitator who was able to foster a sense of community and connection that replicated the experience I had when I participated in her in-person retreat. She brings her whole self to the experience and holds space for others to do the same. I walked away with a full heart and a renewed sense of community and connection."

—Tammy Merlo, Valley Village CA

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A Gift to Inspire Your Writing

Subscribe to my mailing list and I will immediately give you a beautiful eBook: Writing Toward Courage: A Thirty Day Practice.

Subscribe to my mailing list and I will immediately give you a beautiful eBook: Writing Toward Courage: A Thirty Day Practice

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