Remembering Interdependence

Re-membering Interdependence

Discover what wolves can teach us about relationships

A unique retreat with Meghan Walla-Murphy, Matt Nelson & Koelle Simpson

Eagle River, WI  I  February  8th – 13th, 2023

 

Re-membering Interdependence

There’s something truly remarkable that seems to unfold when we spend quality time exploring our connection to nature outdoors. Mother Nature gently guides us to examine our own internal landscape. As a young girl, I sought out  connections with horses to help me avoid spending time in uncomfortable relationships with people. In turn, each time I reached out to form a relationship with a horse, he or she would invite me to notice what was stirring in my own inner world first. For example: What was my emotional state? Where was I holding back and why? Could I see my needs as equally important as theirs? Did I realize there was nothing I needed to prove? To be engaged in a safe, balanced, relationship with a horse I had to open my heart and become intentional about forming a friendship. This required me to be  present and learn to hold  my own experience with equal value and importance to the horse’s experience. 

Whether it was the horses I played with, the grasshoppers that jumped high into the air as they grazed, the forests through which we wandered, the birds that sang in counterpoint among a chorus of other animals, or the squirrels who diligently dug holes to stash away their tree nuts … one key lesson from Mother Nature was always present – the vital importance of interdependence. 

Interdependence is a balanced state of self and others in a relationship. This isn’t the type of child-like dependence that leaves us unable to tie our own shoelaces, but rather a recognition that we commune and evolve in an ecosystem of relationships. Just as plants grow within an ecosystem that is sustained by a complex web of interdependency with fungi, microbes, animals, trees and other plants, we too have a deep need for diverse relationships with one another and the natural world.

The Challenge

For many of us, it’s no easy task to look within ourselves to explore the fears and insecurities that sprawl across our inner landscape. It can also be daunting for some of us to open ourselves up to truly cultivate relationships of interdependence with one another.

When we experience betrayal, broken trust, or trauma – especially early in life – we develop strategies to help us avoid that pain from being repeated. This often results in actively pushing away human connection in order to hold on to a sense of safety. Unfortunately, it also creates a web of loneliness that carries the illusion of protecting us, but holds the reality of trapping us. 

While we’re doing the best we can with the conditioned skills we’ve acquired, each generation unknowingly passes down unresolved stumbling blocks that impede us from forming safe healthy relationships with one another. This unresolved intergenerational trauma can cause us to disconnect from others and focus solely on our own survival with a “go it alone” approach to our lives. While this might seem like a good solution at first, it collides in direct contrast with our condition as social beings with hardwired needs for love, connection, and a true sense of belonging. In fact, our entire internal and external ecosystem thrives when we foster relationships of interdependence that support reciprocity.

What Wolves Can Teach Us About Relationships

I always look to Mother Nature first when seeking guidance for how we might restore our essential wisdom with one another. To curate this unique opportunity to explore the lives of wolves, I reached out to my dear friends Meghan Walla-Murphy and Matt Nelson who are both exceptional wildlife animal trackers. They are eager to share with us how wolves can offer us a profound and successful example of living an interdependent life. Notwithstanding the  hierarchy that wildlife biologists have assigned to wolves,  (dominant Alpha, passive Beta, lower Omega, etc) in reality, the structure of the wolf pack is more lateral and fluid. Each member of the pack is as essential to the safety and protection of the young pups, and to one another, as the alpha hunter. 

Unlike our western culture where everyone is in pursuit of their own individual happiness at all costs, wolves live in a dynamic culture of interdependence, where each member holds different roles that are essential to the survival and success of the entire pack.

Retreat Details

Given our deep need to reconnect with our essential wisdom and restore our relationships to cycles reciprocity, I’m teaming up with Meghan Walla-Murphy and Matt Nelson to offer you a unique tracking retreat. Join us for 4 days and 5 nights in forests of Wisconsin where we will embark on the adventure of winter tracking. During this intimate retreat experience we will allow the wolves to guide us to re-member the beauty and magic of living a life of interdependence

Here are a few lessons we can glean as a humble student of wolves:

  • Discover the key elements we need to embrace interdependence and maintain healthy relationships.
  • Explore the archetypes we share with wolves: the nurturer, the guardian, and the leader.
  • To remember our responsibility to future generations by caring for others in a balanced way. 
  • To explore our inner stories, fears, projections and genuine needs in relationships with others.
  • Recognize wolves as our kin, explore how we too might cultivate a truly nourishing sense of community with one another.

We hope you will join us.

Remembering Interdependence

Retreat Agenda

Remembering Interdependence

Wed Feb. 8th, Evening Arrival: Coming Together

  • 5:00pm | Arrival and getting settled into your rooms. We’ll have a well appointed AirBnB to serve as our central retreat gathering space
  • 6:00pm | Dinner, introductions, and intentions
  • 8:00 pm | Winding down for a night of deep, restorative rest
Remembering Interdependence

Thurs. Feb. 9th, Day 1: Awakening to the landscape

  • 7:30 am | Breakfast
  • 8:30 am | Depart the house, taking a shared van to start our wolf tracking adventure
  • 9:00 am – 2:00 pm | Following the tracks and signs of wolves while being attentive to personal insights and lessons that arise.
  • 12:00 pm | Packed lunch on the trail
  • 2:00 pm | Return to the house
  • 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm | A break for rest, reflection, or play
  • 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm | Group discussion and coaching facilitation
  • 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm | Dinner, storytelling, and connecting
Remembering Interdependence

Fri. Feb. 10th, Day 2: Discovering Our Relationship Patterns

  • 7:30 am | Breakfast
  • 8:30 am | Depart the house, taking a shared van to start our wolf tracking adventure
  • 9:00 am – 2:00 pm | Following the tracks and signs of wolves while being attentive to personal insights and lessons that arise.
  • 12:00 pm | Packed lunch on the trail
  • 2:00 pm | Return to the house
  • 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm | A break for rest, reflection, or play
  • 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm | Group discussion and coaching facilitation
  • 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm | Dinner, storytelling, and connecting
Remembering Interdependence

Sat. Feb. 11th, Day 3: Forming Safe Relationships

  • 7:30 am | Breakfast
  • 8:30 am | Depart the house, taking a shared van to start our wolf tracking adventure
  • 9:00 am – 2:00 pm | Following the tracks and signs of wolves while being attentive to personal insights and lessons that arise.
  • 12:00 pm | Packed lunch on the trail
  • 2:00 pm | Return to the house
  • 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm | A break for rest, reflection, or play
  • 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm | Group discussion and coaching facilitation
  • 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm | Dinner, storytelling, and connecting
Remembering Interdependence

Sun. Feb. 12th, Day 5: A Life of Reciprocity & Interdependence

  • 7:30 am | Breakfast
  • 8:30 am | Depart the house, taking a shared van to start our wolf tracking adventure
  • 9:00 am – 2:00 pm | Following the tracks and signs of wolves while being attentive to personal insights and lessons that arise.
  • 12:00 pm | Packed lunch on the trail
  • 2:00 pm | Return to the house
  • 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm | A break for rest, reflection, or play
  • 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm | Group discussion and coaching facilitation
  • 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm | Dinner, storytelling, and connecting
Remembering Interdependence

Mon. Feb. 13th, Departure

  • 7:30 am | Breakfast
  • 9:00 am | Check out and departure

Program Details & Registration

Retreat Dates: Feb. 8th – 13th, 2023
Arriving the evening of Feb. 8th
Departing the morning of Feb. 13th

Retreat pricing includes:

  • 5 nights & 4 days of retreat facilitation.
  • Beautiful lodging at an AirBnB home (private rooms available)
  • Healthy nourishing meals throughout your retreat program.
  • Daily support and coaching facilitation from Koelle Simpson, Meghan Walla-Murphy, & Matt Nelson
  • Group transportation from our AirBnB to our tracking locations each day
  • Small group size of no more than 7 participants

Pricing does not include:

  • Flights and transportation to and from the lodge

Other items to keep in mind:

  • While we will be out tracking on foot in an area where the wolf population is strong, there is no guarantee that we will get to see the wolves.
  • This is winter time in Wisconsin. We will be tracking in snow during the day and it’s likely to be chilly. We will provide you with a list of lots of great quality gear to help you navigate the elements with comfort.
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Retreat Pricing

  • $6,500
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Pay-in-full

  • One Payment of $6,500
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Deposit Payment Plan

  • Two Payments of $3,250:
  • 1st Payment of $3,250 will be made when you sign up
  • 2nd Payment of $3,250 will be processed 1 month later

Interested in this Retreat?

Please complete the form below…

Given the nature of the depth of coaching facilitation that takes place during retreats, it is advised that you have worked with Koelle Simpson for a minimum of 3 virtual one on one coaching sessions prior to attending an in person retreat.

Concerned about Covid-19?

We understand. Your safety is a high priority. Thus we are taking precautions in order to gather safely:

  • Our group size will not exceed more than 7 participants plus our facilitators
  • You’re welcome to wear a mask if you prefer and we’ll be able to easily create distance as needed
  • If you face the unfortunate event of becoming sick with covid-19 leading up to this event, we will make every effort to apply your retreat fee to a future program or virtual coaching support by Koelle Simpson.

Cancellation Policy

Due to the costly, non-refundable nature of reserving venues for various events, and the limited spaces available in workshops and retreats, a cancellation made 60 days or less from the dates of an event is non-refundable. Fifty percent of the event fee will be refunded for a cancellation made between 90 to 61 days prior to a scheduled event. Any cancellation made 91 days prior to a scheduled event is fully refundable minus an administrative processing fee.

Please note that should an issue or challenge arise due to Covid-19 (either with travel restrictions or health matter) we will make every effort to apply your payment as a credit to a future retreat program.

Meet Your Retreat Facilitators

Remembering Interdependence

Koelle Simpson

Koelle Simpson is a life coach focused in the field of trauma, somatic processing, and attachment theory. In 2006, she founded the Koelle Institute for Equus Coaching out of a desire to share the incredible insights horses can offer us on how to heal from trauma. This gave rise to a passionate community of hundreds of certified Equus Coaches who share the lessons we can learn from horses around the globe.

Over the past sixteen years Koelle has continued her quest to team up with Mother Nature in order to guide us back to our essential wisdom, leading retreats with horses, whales, bears, and all of the wild kin who call the Africa bush-veld home – most especially elephants. Her work has been featured in O Magazine, BBC Business Report, the National Journal, the OWN Network as well as the TEDx stage.

Today, Koelle lives in Colorado supporting clients and leading intimate retreats guided by the wisdom of animals. She see herself as a humble student of life and marvels at the magic and resilience of the human spirit.

Meghan Walla-Murphy

Meghan Walla-Murphy grew up roaming the Santa Monica Mountains in Los Angeles County. This landscape’s dry ruggedness and abundant biodiversity deeply shaped Meghan’s ethic of Respect for both ecology and human communities. She learned  the destructive impact of humanity, but also how humans can be an integral part of a healthy eco-system. 

With great fortune, Meghan has been able to combine her passions for animal tracking, writing and people into vocations of habitat conservation and public awareness. As an Educator, Ecological Consultant and Writer of books, essays and articles, Meghan strives to help people connect to their external and internal landscapes.

Remembering Interdependence
Remembering Interdependence

Matt Nelson

From the Arctic to the Antarctic, this simple traveler has left footprints in search of authenticity in his life. Slow to learn and insistent on the hardest of life’s lessons, he’s a generalist in the true sense of the word. Easily bored, Matt has worked more jobs than can be listed here, searching for himself amid all the glittery promises of the materialistic culture he grew up in.

A lifetime hunter and woodsman, Matt strives to share his deep observations and his love for all things wild and true freely amongst his human interactions and in his teaching. 

Matt is a graduate of the Wilderness Guide Program, a 12-month wilderness immersion program at the Teaching Drum Outdoor School, with whom he maintains a close relationship and collaborates with to this day.  

Matt holds a Senior Tracker certificate from Cybertracker Conservation, is a track and sign evaluator with the same organization, continuing the work of keeping animal tracking alive and valued in our modern age. 

Matt has worked on numerous wildlife and research projects, including the Gualala River Watershed council, the Garfield/Mesa Lion project, and the East Bay Puma Project. He currently resides in northern Wisconsin.

What Clients Say

“I loved the whole experience. The retreat helped me get back in touch with nature. I feel even more drawn to go out and explore in my area, all the animals and plants that are living there. I also became really aware of some of my processing patterns. My internal landscape. There were some really old held patterns that came to life. This retreat allowed me to take a good look at them and then become more aware of how I can lean into doing things differently.”

 

Karen W.

“The Return to the Heart Retreat had a positive impact on me. It made my heart and smile expand. It made the lessons I have learned over my life move from my mind into my heart. I now have a deeper understanding of what matters in my life.

I loved the animals—relating how they interact with each other with how we, humans, could do the same in our life. Sharing our experiences on game drives was an intimate way to help me open up to ways I can grow. It opened my mind to new perspectives on life and helped me with some of my blindspots. It especially help me pause in my habitual response to always wanting to be right.”

 

Pat J.

“I had a lot of awareness rise up. I observed how people would drop into fear over what they thought the animals might do instead of watching what they were actually doing. That has been a big lesson for me: when you let fear take over, you lose the ability to track the energy, moment by moment. You are instead in a pattern of fear and that distorts what is actually happening.”

 

Angela W.

“ChiGong, the game drives, sharing and learning from each other and feeling supported throughout along with Koelle’s strength, warmth, wisdom, and clarity made the experience very rich and powerful for me. Realizing I am not alone in facing life’s challenges—we all have trauma to resolve and need to learn to love ourselves and find inner peace. Authenticity. Koelle’s deep involvement and genuine support helped to challenge my well-worn (destructive) behavioral patterns while offering a new way of seeing and moving forward with a positive outlook and energy.

The small group size made it possible for everyone to have individual attention and coaching. There was nothing “boilerplate” or “standardized” in Koelle’s approach. She touched all of our hearts in an individual and very personal way. Incredible.”

 

Carolyn J.

“It was magical. Koelle, you are a force of nature and a “keystone individual”. I am so grateful for your inspiring guidance and support.”

Valerie Z.

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