A new year and choosing differently

New life!
One of the fig cuttings we kindly received is growing!

A lot has happened on the finca the past month. There are now 2 builders Koker and Juan Carlos, working here to do the main building that needs to happen. They are really great and creative with building, making it as natural and sustainable as possible. I’m learning a lot of construction Spanish, trying to help out wherever I can with trimming trees that are in the way. For the yurt, I sorted out and cleaned the wooden floor planks and thought along with how to put everything together, since it is a second-hand yurt without much info on how to put it together. It’s not yet totally done, but Charlie is living in it and it looks amazing (feeling jealous sometimes, although I love Lotje)! Just like the bathroom that is being built now, it’s stunning! I’ve also been helping with things like, sanding, painting, sowing (the yurt has gotten windows) and together with Charlie making the decisions on what we want. Also cleaning other spaces where we want to build something and preparing the huerta, our garden. Making a raised bed and sowing seeds.

Preparing a raised bed manually… that was a lot of work! but proud of the result and hope that it will bring us good food!

With spring happening now, it was also the time to get creative with nettle, of which I made a fertilizer/bugrepellent and a cream that helps against burns from the sun or insects (also the burn from nettle itself). Looking forward to doing more of this with the herbs and flowers we’ll grow. Starting to feel like a proper witch!

It’s been quite the process here with myself and Charlie. A practice of taking it one day at a time, continuously observing again what it is I feel and need, and finding the right words to express that. Our relationship being more ‘business’ now, where I figured I needed to ask for a bit of support to be able to stay. It’s now more of a workaway situation, where I help out with all that needs to be done here and he partly takes care of buying the food. It feels a bit strange to have to arrange it like this, but for me it is really what I need to not stress out about my own financial situation and being able to dedicate most of my time to the project here.

The skeleton of the yurt!

With us having separated and him seeing someone else, I was also hearing the stories about his new relationship and the long-distance struggles. Noticing that I do want to know about it, so that it can become more real and easier to let go of, but also feeling that it makes me feel sad to hear about it. It confronts me with a feeling of not being good enough, my desire of not wanting to be alone, feeling my increasing ‘skinhunger’ (the need for physical skin contact) and feeling jealousy because he found someone else and he is in an in-love phase, while I’m not (although I don’t envy long-distance). We were arguing a lot. He was quitting smoking and we would just trigger the crap out of each other. However, we still always kept sharing and found understanding and compassion towards each other again. At some point, with all the conversations we were having, that felt really connected and loving, and while his new relationship was not going well, and because of some things he had said, some hope had sneaked in again. The sensation of butterflies. The feeling of our happy moments and the connection we have. When we got to talk about it, as he was in a good relationship space again and he expplained that I had misunderstood it, I just felt sad all over again.

The yurt up in the woods 🙂

Disappointed by myself for suckering into it again. It’s amazing how easily I can almost forget about all the sadness I felt and wanting to believe in love and the attachment that apparently has to come with it. Also feeling that I would love to be with someone new, who really chooses me. Someone who I don’t know yet and can totally romanticise in my mind and can manifest, but feeling the familiarity and the connection of us. With that, I realize that I’m really taking the challenging route, by staying and working on this transition. I’m not sure if that is the best thing for me to do, but it is what I’m doing. Fortunately, he was gone quite some time to arrange things and be with family and his love. But, during the whole process, I also had to leave a few weekends and stay with Carlos on his finca. Just to get out of the space, the triggers, the feelings and the memories, and be with a beloved friend with whom I can share pretty much anything, in Dutch (which is so incredibly nice).

The kitties were helped at the vet and I made Eki a nice shirt, so she didnt have to wear the collar, which was a pain in the van…
Super hipsterkitty!

I also spent some quality time with the girls here and had a few surfsessions. This all helped me to get my head clear again and trust my own feelings and intuition, which were sometimes really clouded by all the emotional conversations between Charlie and me.
During my therapy time years ago, my therapist told me to make a mindmap about my ex back then, to visualise the good and bad things. I had such a hard time lettting go of the idea of how I wanted it to be between us. This really helped me to get it clear that I wasn’t in a happy relationship back then. I did it again now, which gave me some perspective. And I made a new one for the man whom I want to invite into my life.

Just before the virus alarm phase was set by the government, I had some days where I was on the verge of leaving. I felt so tired of the triggers and making the effort to work it out. There had been some days where I had been exhausted and my body just couldn’t do anything anymore. I felt a lot of fear about my diet and health (I feel good, but haven’t been tested yet), about my future here on the finca, alone, and how to make it all work financially. I had asked Carlos if I could stay with him for a bit longer, but quite soon after, felt that I didn’t want to leave my home. I’ve been living here for several months now, and it feels like home. And I don’t want to run away from challenging situations anymore. Especially not if there is room to share, work it out and grow, which with Charlie, there is. If I’d go, it will probably come back to me in some other way with a new partner. Even though I sometimes feel tired of all the processes and having to put everything I’ve learned so far, into practice, it is why I learned it. No need for more trainings and retreats. This is it, with someone I care deeply about. It doesn’t get much more challenging. This is the practice. Breathe and 1 moment at a time. Being open and vulnerable with nothing to lose that is not to be had in the first place.

With the rain, the yurt door is closed, and the kitties had a tendency to squeeze through any hole they could find. But now they have their own door 🙂

And then the virus hit and we were not allowed to move much anymore. Surrendering into what is, staying and appreciating the free therapy. It’s interesting how, when there is no choice anymore, it becomes easier to make the effort to work with what is and to stop fighting it. Counting the blessing that are there.

My birthday 35th was a day after the new rules. I had planned a little gettogether with friends, which I had cancelled to be on the safe side. So, it turned into a quiet day, with quite some birthday songs over the phone or in messages. That always warms my heart! I had made some diet-proof coconut whipped cream/pumpkin cream/chufa pancake goody, which I shared with Charlie and the next day with the neighbours, to celebrate. We did our shopping and almost got a €2000 fine each, for driving in a car together. But it was the first day of confinement, so I guess we got lucky because we didn’t get the fine. It’s a strange time for a birthday.

My yogaclasses had been going really nicely. Every week I could notice that I felt more comfortable with teaching in Spanish. Besides the construction Spanish, I was also quickly learning anatomy and movement Spanish, thanks to youtube and yoga with Xuan Lan ;). I started with no yogis or just 1, but after the second week it slowly started to increase. In the end I had about 3-4 regular yogis per class. They were lovely! Helping me out if I couldn’t find my words and they always left really happy and relaxed. In the beginning I was always feeling a bit hesitant to go to the studio to teach, but afterwards there was this feeling of incredible gratefulness. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to share and an amazing opportunity, that totally got me out of my comfort zone, but I managed to pull off really well. It’s a shame that, with the virus outbreak, the classes had to stop, because it might have been my last class (for now), without me even realising it. Aude is now back and I was covering for her, but let’s see what will happen next.

Some time to practice the Art of Not-Doing, practicing what I teach.

I feel really grateful for being able to live here, in nature, with space around me, with someone I care deeply about. I am really thankful I feel healthy and strong and that I’m not on prednisone at the moment. Fingers crossed that my diet is really helping! We have the Kombucheria, an amazing little ecosupermarket in Vejer, where we get most of our healthy food. We still have lots to do on the finca and kind and helpful neighbours. For now, Koker and Juan Carlos are working and we can still get materials to build. We just need to get the finances sorted out, which have become a challenge with the virus outbreak. So, if you would like to support us in our forest-school and reconnecting with yourself and nature project, and give yourself a present in return, go to vyanayoga.nl and get The Art of Not-Doing online practices (in Dutch or English), which are an amazing way to start your journey within, guided by me, especially during these strange pandemic times.

Wishing everyone good health and peace of mind <3







7 thoughts on “A new year and choosing differently”

  1. Hey Rianne,

    Even though we hardly know one another I feel the need to tell you this. After all a dear friend of Carlos is a dear friend of mine 😉😃

    I’m truly amazed by how you cope with you situation over there. I don’t know if I would have been able to do so. It takes a strong person to deal with the things you did in the way you did.

    As you probably know my girl left me after 20 years from one day to the next. And I’ve never seen or spoken to her since. At the time I thought that was the worst way to break up and I would have given anything to get a sort of similar experience you have. A lot of feelings and thoughts you describe I can relate to and I can feel your pain and longing. I really feel for you!
    I really don’t know if I could have dealt with and can deal with that being so close to the one I once loved.

    Your story opens my eyes to the fact that for me it might not have been so bad the way my breakup went. Although I still feel it was not the most respectfull way of her to do it like she done. Maybe for me it was a blessing in desguize.

    I don’t know why I felt the need to tell you, and thank you for you story. I’ve also choose a different route in life and one of the things is being more open and vulnerable.

    So… I wanna thank you for your story! It opend my eyes to how my breakup went, and that feelings I have are not that ‘strange’. Breakups are just s##t however they go and we have to deal with them as best we can.
    I commend you for not running from your triggers but facing them head on. That’s something I still need to do, I’ve been running from them.

    Your story gave me a lot to think about. Thanks again for that.

    Stay strong! Survive corona!
    For now a virtual hug, you’ll get a real one once I come over there in beautiful Spain again. Which I will, don’t know when but I will.

    Lots of strength and love.

    • Hi Arjen!

      Wow, dank je wel voor het delen. Het raakt me om het te lezen. Mooi dat het je zulke inzichten brengt. Ja breakups zijn hoe dan ook sh*t en we dealen ermee as best we can. En de reis naar kwetsbaarheid en liefde niet makkelijk, vooral als het nog niet gehoord kan worden, al is het tegenovergestelde op de lange termijn veel moeilijker begin ik te voelen.

      En ja, de knuffel houden we tegoed!

      Heel veel liefs terug ❤️

  2. Dear Rianne,
    I am so happy to hear that you are feeling good about diet and health, about your future in the finca, and about your emotional balance; I mean the whole of result of your constant practice for being open with nothing to lose.
    ¡by the way interior of the yurt really seems cosy!

    Maybe because of I have been accompanying your published stories and also told you about a feeling of partaking and gratitude about your shared experiences; during this time of worldwide crisis I happened to think of you, wondering whether you were in a safe condition. So imagine what a nice surprise has been to me such a retaking of your blog.
    I also thought about writing you, but up to now hesitated since I was feeling to tell you about an heartbreak adventure I am now diving through, and I at the same time didn’t want to risk to bother you.
    Now the chance to do it in public a public forum as a further case seems me to be the answer to the recurrent inner question: who can I tell this story to?

    When last month I wrote you I was at the beginning of a rare online dating match, which quickly grown in an intense chatting, where we arrived recognise ‘we are so akin we should have matched well before’. Then I organised myself to go to Italy to meet her and she prepared a one day trip for us, by offering places to visit, things to do and a lovely meal too. It had been a perfect day (just like that of Lou Reed’s song), we recognised each other and got close simply by looking and doing those things, that is without even needing to go into secret tales of ours.
    The day after I told her about my yearning, deriving from being frightened by the thought of the potential of our connection. Two days later she wrote an extensive celebration of that day as well as of me, but ended up by saying she was confused and angry with herself and that trying to clear out such sensation she understood she has no room for anything beyond friendship, since she has own paths that is not able to imagine to walk with anybody else.
    In that moment I understood I had been swept up by my desires and even thou I couldn’t negating them, I tried to reorient myself by considering and stating that, on the base of what she already revealed me, I was in any case trusting she knew what would have been better for her, for us (and for me too in this case).
    She didn’t reply, then two weeks later after I returned to Portugal, as the contagion was so increasing in Italy while writing to my closest people I also asked her how was she doing. Even thou I had again no answer ten more days later I sent her a playful post about the politics of plague situation written in a cultural milieu, we previously discovered to share.

    I recall myself the pain of many people these days upon those pains of previous average days, nevertheless due to my private confusion, I receive as a blessed gift this occasion to express my episode.

    Thank you so much Rianne for your motivating open heartedness.

    With hope for everybody (at least in reason of the mystery of what is still to happen),


    • Dear Vincenzo,

      Thank you for your beautiful words and sharing your story. I feel honored that you feel the courage to share it here publicly.
      It sounds like a beautiful and really intense journey you have been on. Wonderful to be able to meet someone like that, whom you can connect so deeply with, but difficult at the same time for not being able to live up to the imagined dream.

      I wish you great health and that you will be able to reconnect with her again when the time is right.

      Much love


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