Bent on world spa disruption.

I had someone tell me this week that it sounds like I’m “bent on world spa disruption”. Guilty as charged.

Real talk, friends:

At least once a week I wake up in a cold sweat, wondering if I’m wasting my life with this whole Milagro thing. Okay, maybe not once a week and maybe not awakened by cold sweat. More like a couple times a day. While I’m sitting at stoplights. Walking my dogs. Eating dinner.

Sounds dramatic I know. And I do have plenty of dramatic in me, but I’m not kidding. Post cancer, I have a real fear of wasting this one life I get. Which is kind of ironic, since I’ve also sworn off fear.

The only thing I allow myself to be scared of now is regret.

In our back room at Milagro.


I’ve been working a lot lately on being fully aware and observant of the people I encounter every day. To see if there are things I can do or say to be helpful. Even looking for things to give me an always needed perspective check. Things I won’t notice if I’m flying by on auto-pilot. I can tell you this: it’s overwhelming. And that’s not even taking into account the 48 hours I spent in NYC recently. I completely get the explanation that New Yorkers aren’t rude, there’s just too much stuff and too many faces to take the time and the head space needed to process it all. You’d be crippled if you tried. Keep your head down, keep moving. Here in Kansas, it’s a bit more manageable. But there’s still enough human story and struggle to weigh down my heart. Not to mention there’s the entire interwebs, filled with enough war and poverty and mental illness and sadness to make even a natural optimist discouraged. These are the things that run through my mind when I’m questioning my life choice to open a “spa”.

Whoa, lighten up, Ash. Right? Heavy stuff. But let me tell you this: if I’m pouring my heart and my soul and many, many hours of my life into something, it’s not going to be your brow shape. It’s not going to be your cellulite. Hell, it’s not even going to be concern over your use of sulfates or parabens. I’m sorry, I love you, but we’ve got bigger fish to fry as a human race.

Milagro is my love letter to my community. It’s my way of saying to you: I see you, I hear you, I’m for you. I think you’re fantastic. I think you’re interesting. I think you’re doing really, really important things. And I think you need a place to go to fill your cup.

It’s a little weird, it’s a little different. And let’s be honest – people may not get it. It’s definitely not standard fare when you’re thumbing through spa menus. But it’s me, doing it my way. No regrets.

© 2019 by Ashley Smith & Milagro Midwestern Spa Collective