"Two and a half days? Not speaking at all? You?"
My friend's question is not as ridiculous as it seems; anyone who knows me will tell you that I generally have a lot to say for myself, so to be totally non-verbal for anything more than about ten minutes is quite an achievement.
However, that was part of my meditation retreat and despite my apprehension about whether I'd manage it or not, I decided to throw myself wholeheartedly at the task. And was amazed to find that it wasn’t as difficult as I expected. In fact, I found it totally liberating and think it should be compulsory for everybody, especially busy Mums just before Christmas!
The point of being silent on the retreat is to remind ourselves that the source of all emotions comes from inside us. No one else can make you feel anything that you don’t want to, so when we are upset by something that has been said or done, it’s our choice to be upset. It’s a strange thing to think that the ultimate responsibility for how we feel is actually down to us, not anyone else.