A year ago, an old friend from high school posted pictures of her petting grey whales down in Baja California Sur, Mexico. I didn’t even think this was possible, but here was proof that a lifelong dream of mine was within reach. I immediately messaged her to ask where this magical place was.
Turns out, Guerrero Negro is home to the largest concentration of grey whales during migration. In 2020, officials counted two-thousand of them in their lagoon. Guerrero Negro translates from Spanish to English as the Black Warrior, named after a whale hunting ship that beached in a sand drift during low tide. The shipwreck served as a warning to other ships for many years.
The town is mostly known for its manufacturing of salt from the salt flats, which produce 9% of the worlds salt. It is the largest open-air salt mine on the planet and produces anywhere between 7 million and 9 million tons of salt a year. The town is built around this mine and there’s not much else other than the infrastructure to support the workers and their families.
Upon learning that there are boat tours through a few of the small motels, I immediately started planning a trip there with my husband for this year. Whale season in Guerrero Negro is January to March. The closest airport is still a six-hour drive away. Alternatively, we could drive the whole distance from our home in Orange County, which would take about twelve hours and would require an overnight stop halfway on both ends.
Ultimately, we chose to fly into Loreto to spend a few days there before making the drive out to Guerrero Negro. We spent months researching and planning this trip, which we took last week. I was excited with anticipation. Of course we brought all our camera gear in the hopes of capturing some incredible photos and videos.
We would get two opportunities to engage with the whales, who are at choice with whether they will approach the boats and allow us to pet them. The first day, there were six of us on the small boat. We were told there were about four hundred whales that had made it to the area so far this season.
All the passengers, but myself, were able to pet the whales that approached. It was luck of the draw on which whale came and where they popped up near the boat. We stayed in our spots and enough whales came around to cover most of the boat’s exterior. Yet, they were always just out of my reach. And I was happy for my husband who got to experience it.
I cried with gratitude for how incredible it was just to see them so close. I even got to look one in the eye, which was profound and sent chills throughout my body.
On our second day out, the small boat was packed to capacity with fifteen passengers. We got a late start due to poor visibility since the fog was so thick. Because they needed to stay on time for the second tour of the day, which was also sold out, and the strong afternoon winds prohibited them from being out on the water past 3 p.m., our trip would be shorter than anticipated.
We cruised the lagoon, but the whales didn’t seem interested in approaching. After an hour or so, one whale approached like it was coming directly to me. This would be my chance.
As I moved to the bow, a woman sitting in the row behind me pulled me backwards as she jumped over the divider and shoved her way in front of me. At that moment, the whale brought its head up and she pet its nose with a squeal. She blocked out anyone else who tried to get near as she reached once more to pet its nose before he dove under the boat and swam away. The same woman then sat at the bow, claiming the whole area rather than returning to her seat.
Tears started to creep into my eyes as anger rose from my chest. I felt an old protective energy bubble up, something I hadn’t felt in a while.
Old me would have dove straight into my coping mechanisms and patterns without skipping a beat. My mind wanted to spin into a victim state of, “How dare she push me out of the way! How selfish and self-centered she is! I planned this all for a year and now I won’t get my chance. She took my chance from me!”
I took a deep breath and repeated in my mind, “Choose love over fear. Choose love over fear. Choose love over fear.”
My training has taught me to let both emotions have a voice and therefore I began to get inquisitive. What did this anger inside me have to say, and was it true? Anger is a cover emotion for fear and/or sadness. So, what was I afraid of, and what was I sad about?
Fear and Sadness said:
“There’s a limited supply and I have to get mine. All that time, effort and planning was a complete waste. The long drives and huge expense of a vacation was all for naught. Other people are selfish, rude and only out for themselves. I have to push back and be aggressive otherwise I’ll get steamrolled.”
I asked myself if any of this was true. Then I asked myself what Love would say.
“Each person on this boat is passionate about whales and hopes to experience them. The woman who pushed you is Russian. She and her husband could have come all the way from Russia for just this moment and this may be their one and only lifetime opportunity to experience this. You can, if you really wanted, try this again.
You also don’t know if she needed a physical encounter to catalyze her own spiritual activation, whereas your being in the general proximity of whales is enough to receive what you need to. This may be a life changing moment for her and the highlight of her entire life.
You also know that what is intended for you will always be yours. If this is an experience you are supposed to have, you will have it. It will happen naturally, easily and without effort. There will be no need to force it or manipulate it into being. It just will be.”
As I settled into this truth, I closed my eyes and focused on channeling Divine Life Force Energy. I sent it out to all the whales, dolphins, fish, birds and other wildlife in the lagoon and surrounding area. I channeled it into my heart and sent it out with pure intentions to restore the ocean and rejuvenate the life it held. I asked the energy to heal and keep the wildlife safe, and to send this blessing through the generations to come. Then I sent it to the people on the boat with me to fill all of our hearts with love and peace.
When I opened my eyes, I saw a couple dolphins. These are my spirit animals who pop up at impactful times. They were swimming straight toward the boat. I got chills down my spine and up through my third eye and crown.
I took a few photos of my babies as they porpoised up to say hi. Then I watched them swim out to the nearby whales and guide them toward us. It was as if the dolphins were saying, “She’s over here! Come this way!”
The whales followed the dolphins back to our boat and within moments we were surrounded. There were more whales than there was space for around the boat. Each and every person on the boat was able to pet them, including myself. Twice! I cried. It was so beautiful to witness and experience.
We spent the next hour with whale after whale who came to play, to rub against the boat and scratch their itches, to be curious about the passengers aboard. It was sheer delight.
The whole energy of the boat had shifted. Each person was laughing, lighthearted and in pure joy. We were chatting with each other and openly sharing our excitement. One man joked, “I’m never washing this hand again!” We later learned he was a whale watching boat captain out of Washington for 30 years and this was the closest he’d ever gotten to a whale.
This all was in direct opposition of the quiet, graspy energy that we started out with when each person was keeping to themselves.
I heard my inner knowing again say, “What is meant for you will always be. Trust.”
In each moment we have a choice to choose love or fear. Some moments are more challenging than others to choose love. Thankfully, we get many opportunities to practice. I’m grateful I got this chance to put it into practice.
It’s a reminder of the power we hold – and wield – to create our realities.