Connection, Acceptance and Gratitude | Arts & Culture
Since arriving home on Sunday, I’ve been struggling to find a way to share my Creative Alliance ’12 experience with you.
I’ve searched for words with enough weight to convey how one weekend changed me from the inside.
But each time I think I’m getting close to finding a way to convey how impactful the experience was, my words evaporate before I can write them down.
I’ve decided that sometimes trying to put something so powerful into words somehow diminishes it.
Nothing I can say here can do the experience justice.
But what I will say is that I feel new. Tired, but new.
I headed into the experience feeling blocked, overwhelmed and discouraged.
When it was my turn to share my reasons for attending, I said through tears, “I used to be a writer, but I’m not anymore. And I want to be.”
And over the weekend, I felt a shift.
With each conversation, it felt as though a piece of me woke up.
Since coming home, I have:
- danced in the living room with my children in the middle of the afternoon.
- begun reading again; I started with Robin O’Bryant’s Ketchup is a Vegetable: And Other Lies Moms Tell Themselves and have also ordered Molly Campbell’s Characters in Search of a Novel.
- been inspired to make a meal that required shopping for ingredients and following a new recipe.
- laid on my bed, thinking only of how lovely the steady breeze from the ceiling fan felt on my face.
- put my iPhone down more than I ever have.
- laced up my running shoes and, for the first time in a long time, went for a run.
- picked up a pen and wrote my thoughts down on paper…just for myself.
- let go of another chunk of my grief.
There in Ojai, I felt a connection that I simply can’t describe, but this quote conveys it perfectly:
I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship. –Brene Brown
Yes…that. Exactly that.
Thank you to each of the women who attended Creative Alliance ’12. You are each magical, brave, creative and brilliant.
And I am so grateful to call you my friends.