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Cathering Colonia

Thirteen years ago, when Cathering Colonia's father came to visit his brothers in the United States, he had a tragic accident that forced the family to migrate from Colombia. So, at 18, Colonia had to finish high school here, learn a new language and discover another culture. She later married her high school boyfriend, had a child, worked as a nurse, opened a spa and discovered the common denominator among young working women: where's the time to do everything? In this essay, Cathering Colonia explores how she learned to navigate her daily work load.

My Secret Place

Early in the morning when I wake up, I look through the window of my kitchen. As I am filling the coffee pot with water, I notice the beauty of night and day merging together to become one. It is quiet and peaceful out there, and also within me. This is a moment when my mind can clearly hear the voice of my spirit becoming my secret place. Nobody can intrude; there are no more voices that would confuse the real meaning of my heart's whisper. It is in this moment when I find real peace.

As I go upstairs and wake up my son, the mom's internal voice that lives within me will soon wake up too, and the same for the rest of the world around me. As I am preparing my husband and my three year old son's breakfast, my mind is slowly leaving that quiet place. At this moment it is exploring what the day will bring. Yes, the day has arrived. It is here now. I will soon have to make decisions and face all sorts of situations throughout the day. As the day unfolds, and I begin my daily routines, it becomes harder for me to find that quiet, clear and pure place where I can find myself.

I am a mother, a wife, a business owner and a student. Each of my identities have their own voice. They all blend together and shape the way I am. All of them make up part of my day. But sometimes, it gets harder to discern what the right thing to do is, when so many thoughts are crossing my mind: I need to be on time for Josh's school. How can I help my husband with his stressful job? The client is going to be late, so I need to move others appointments for later this afternoon. How can I grow my business? What should I cook tonight?

Sometimes I feel like the pilot of an airplane that even in the middle of the turbulences, needs to keep the peace. I know my destination, regardless of the clouds in front of me... YET there are times when I have to abandon the cabin, and search for that moment of stillness and quietness. And I often find it in my daily life as I am driving and listening to music, or if I close myself into a small intimate place, such as the bathroom. It is then I can only hear my own voice.

I believe we all have a secret place, a moment where we can find our inner selves. During this time our thoughts are filtered and pure. There is no better place than the one where we hear our own voices just the way they are. It helps us encounter peace within us, Peace that is hard to find in the middle of a busy world.