A Swede, an American, a Moroccan, a Turk and a Panamanian walk into a spa. It sounds like the beginning of a bad joke. Or maybe a brilliant one. I mean to top it off, there’s Islam, Christianity and Baha’i in the mix.

But it’s not a joke at all. It’s actually beautiful and wonderful. And it’s my life, my friends. These are the ladies I have come to lean on and grow with. We could easily dissect every difference of our cultures, faith, language or appearance – but why? Sure, these differences come up. But in this circle, they are safe and respected. As I looked around from one face to the next while we sipped mint tea, I prayed for their families who are literally around the globe and for their children who are growing up with mine.

This week has had more than its share of ugliness and division. This morning with my friends exactly was what my heart needed. And a serious dose of steam and scrub for good measure.