How The Camino Changed My Life

I certainly didn’t get it when I would hear of people walking the Camino – and that life would be suddenly transformed after they got to Santiago. I was called to walk but I thought of it more as a time to clarify versus an event that would shake up my life as I knew it to date.

I was sitting on Lincoln Road in South Beach, Florida when I called my Mother to announce that I had given away the majority of my possessions, would be coming to California for a brief visit before continuing on to Spain where I would be walking to the tomb of St. James. “This just doesn’t ring true to me Sienna” she softly said as these ‘things’ had defined my success to date and the idea of me of transitioning from a Miami Beach lifestyle to a Pilgrim – with everything I needed in a backpack was a bit of a stretch. Her reaction was not a surprise as I surprised myself in those days and in the decisions I was making.

Looking back, that is when I started on ‘The Way’ that has led me to Santiago de Compostela where I sit now writing by candlelight. When I heard that the ‘walk would change my life’ I thought I might start hiking, stop wearing makeup, become more religious … but it was none of those things. When someone’s life is changed I believe that they can trace back to the moment where their path and the subsequent decisions took a dramatic turn. The moment for me was hearing the words Camino Santiago and my girlfriend (who hadn’t been able to walk) telling me that she thought it might be something perfect for where I was in Summer 2010. From there, every decision I have made has led to the present moment where I can look back and remember hearing the bagpipe playing as tears rolled down my face in an approach to the Cathedral.

It was almost as if I new I had found “it”. What is it? It is your purpose, your heart, your life, your love. It is getting to a place, internally and literally, where life seems to open up because you are exactly where you are supposed to be.

I went to hug Santiago (St. James) yesterday in the cathedral, express my gratitude and speak with him about my dreams for the near future. My dreams are not anything new – my dreams are to continue dreaming – to be able to stay in Santiago, to be able to continue on the personal and professional path I am on that is defined by fulfillment.

Actively spreading the good word literally has rained abundance on me through my relationship, friendships, family and work. And ALL of these things are in alignment as I am clear in the life I want and the life I am creating through my second-by-second thoughts, decisions and actions. This process is not flawless as the past 365 days have come with their lessons and lonely moments – but the more time that passes the fewer and far between these moments are.

I look around at the people that have entered (and stayed) in my life, at the opportunities I have to share love through my work and I am blown away – for walking to Santiago truly did transform my life.

I lived a life where I always got what I wanted (more or less), the problem was is that I was asking for the wrong things (and getting them in unexpected ways). Now I have learned how to ask the right questions, seek the right answers and create a life of abundance in ways that I did not even know how to measure.

Thank you to EVERY single person who has been a part of this year in ways big and small … and may you find the peace I have today. Buen Camino!


4 responses to “How The Camino Changed My Life

  1. Funny thing that. I too divide my life into pre-and post Camino. In my case 1999 for the first. There have been many watershed moments in my life, but none of them introduced so great a divide between the old and the new. They say: “You don’t choose the Camino; the Camino chooses you”. You were chosen, Sienna. And now you choose. Choose well and wisely and with love and compassion and how could anything go (seriously and permanently) wrong?
    Nos vemos muy pronto. Tracy

  2. you may say i’m a dreamer, but I’m not they only one, …..
    I also thank you for our meeting at santiago in july 2011


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