When you're done with Suffering...

My friend Adrienne and I booked the "Frida House" for our trip to Tulum, Mexico. The Frida House was a cute, eco-friendly Air B&B right across from the beach.

Perfect, we thought.

We rented a car from Cancun and drove the two hours along the coast: the ocean was to our left and Mayan jungle to our right. Latin music blasted and we squealed with delight when we saw the ocean.

As we approached Tulum we admired the cute shops and restaurants…all had a beachy, bohemian feel.

At 10:30pm we arrived at the Frida House, an Air B&B honoring the talented and tormented artist Frida Kahlo. Right away we noticed the very loud outdoor club adjacent to our abode.

“How long does the partying last?” we asked.

“1:00 am during the week, later on the weekends,” our hostess sheepishly answered.

“It’s okay, “ I thought, “I have ear plugs for both of us.”

We entered the Frida House and noticed it was hot, and I mean HOT. Because of it’s eco-status there was no air conditioning, but we each had a standing fan in our rooms.

“It’s okay, “ I thought, “I’ve lived in hotter places.”

We were both beat and decided to go to bed. But the energy in the place wasn’t so great and needed to be shifted.

“It’s okay,” I said, “We can put on some mantra music and bring in Light and shift the vibe.” Adrienne is a Naam Yogi and lightworker, too. We did this and it helped.

Because of the thumping outdoor music we needed to close the windows to sleep. This made my (smaller) bedroom unbearably hot.

We decided to both sleep in Adrienne’s room on the king size bed and use both of the fans. I drug my fan into her room only to discover there was only one outlet.

The mosquitos started biting.

“It’s okay, “ I thought, “I lived in Nicaragua, I know how to do this.”

“Are you OK staying here?” Adrienne asked.

“Sure!” I said. She was the one who had found and booked the Frida House and I didn’t want her to feel bad.

So, we went to bed with the mantra music playing, earplugs in, and the sorry, singular fan desperately trying to circulate the hot air through the mosquito netting around the bed.

We could still hear the music. Our bodies literally vibrated with the bass.

“It’s okay,” I thought, “They’ll be done at 1:00. We can raise the vibration in here, and we’ll have a great day exploring tomorrow.” I started saying “Thank you, thank you, thank you…” and drifted off to sleep.

It was a super restless sleep. The music kept me up and I tossed and turned from the heat.

Whenever I started to get pissed about the situation I pushed my way back into gratitude. “The bed is comfortable…good thing they have a mosquito net…, etc, etc.”

I woke up again drenched in sweat to see Adrienne sitting up and on her phone. “What time is it?!” I asked.

“2:00am.” She replied. “I found another place, let’s get outta here.”

“YES, let’s.”

As we quickly packed up our things I noticed the Frida Kahlo prints on the walls. She was crying in one, her heart was ripped open in another. She has nails all over her body in a third. “Damn,” I thought, “She really suffered.”

The time is 2:22am as we leave.


Thirty minutes later we arrive at a place called Holistika tucked away in the Mayan Jungle.

Turns out this place is literally heaven on Earth. It is breathtakingly beautiful. The vibe is super light and positive, it is sustainable for the environment, the staff are happy and fun, and the vegetarian food is hands-down some of the best food we have ever had.

Every corner was sacred…there were multiple indoor and outdoor sanctuaries for ceremony of every kind - from fire to plant medicine; the yoga studio and pools were aesthetically stunning and positive messages like “Be Here Now” or "Follow that Dream" adorned every plate they served and every sign throughout the property.

When Adrienne and I were out on our excursions we’d always say, “We just wanna go back home to Holistika!”

(Check out my Instagram for gorgeous images.)

You may think, “Yeah, but it was probably super expensive.” Nope. Because it was low season and Adrienne found a deal on Expedia we literally paid the same as a budget hotel in the U.S.


The Universe set it all up.

And there was a big lesson that came through very clear for both of us.

Adrienne and I had both experienced quite a bit of suffering in our pasts. We noticed how we initially chose the Frida-vibe, but then decided to leave and upgrade. In doing so we had a completely different experience on our trip.

Swimming in the stunning pool at 3:30am at Holistika that first night we both affirmed that from now on we are DONE choosing “Frida”. We are done choosing suffering.

I saw how, sure, I can rise above and rise above and rise above a negative situation…but how about I just CHOOSE a positive situation instead???

How about I just chose "ease"?

How about I just chose "beauty"?

It took a LOT of energy for me to keep my vibe up in the Frida House. It really did. It was a definite fight.

I saw and understood that if I chose easy, lightness-of-being and beauty I have soooooo much more energy and life-force to channel toward areas I really want to help and make a change in (my life’s work, for example), instead of fighting to maintain a high-vibe in negative, heavy environments.

But then I thought of my kids. I noticed a strong belief I held that if they had a “comfortable” childhood with minimal suffering they would be soft little brats. It was a big belief. I had to sit with it and really think about it.

I also thought of the Buddhist teachings that “Life is Suffering”.

What I was shown, while swimming in that gorgeous pool, looking up at the moon and stars, was that it’s all a choice of what reality I want to move into.

Is there suffering in the world? YES, of course!! Do I want to continue this for my lineage? Or do I want to consciously participate in creating a new paradigm, a New Earth?

Yet I was still stuck on my kids turning out like entitled, soft brats if they didn’t suffer. I mean, isn’t through suffering how we all learned our lessons?

As I sat in contemplation I was shown that pressure is necessary for growth.

A seed underground experiences enormous pressure as it grows…a sapling withstands enormous pressure of the wind and storms so it is fortified as it grows.

I was shown that pressure is necessary, yes, and an inevitable part of growth…yet suffering is not.

It may just seem like semantics, but I feel that pressure and suffering hold very different vibes/energies.

Would my children and I encounter pressure as we live, breathe and move through the world? Yes. But did it have to be through the guise of suffering? No.

I’m still processing it all, but one thing is for sure. I’m done choosing “Frida”.

What if Life can be fun and easy and because we are happy and thriving we can help create positive change faster in our families and on this planet?

So, what do you think?

What about your life?

Are there areas that you are fighting and striving to stay positive in when maybe, just maybe, there is another reality that is waiting for you to choose it?

Just a thought ;).

(Click here to learn about leading and creating your own immersion experiences)

Bethany Joy