The WAN writers retreat was amazing. We started out with locals and then and by Sunday, we had two ladies join us from North Platte and one lady from Ainsworth! It was a great eclectic mix with everyone bringing their various levels of writing experience and life experiences to the table and that is what made the difference I think.
My workshop was a hit and the energy is the room was at a vibrant level, this stayed with us for much of the weekend.
I was so proud of all the participants, they absolutely trusted me and each other with their hearts, their vulnerabilities, and their writing. (Which I feel, are often all rolled in one.) There were a few who were in various stages of processing some grief and I'm glad they came, because they are now equipped with a tool to make that process easier.
There were really two things that came out at the retreat, and they were both things that tie humans together, no matter the gender. The one was grief and the other was realizing we dont take time for ourselves to nourish our souls enough. Granted the women talked of this mostly, as the men listened intently, thinking; "Oh crap, does that mean I have to do my own laundry and my own cooking?" (Ha Ha Bob and Dan!)
Speaking of men,there were only two in attendance for the whole workshop, old cowboys. But no need to worry about them, they were totally in their element, flanked on all sides by beautiful women!
It was so amazing because at the beginning, I don't think anyone had any intention of sharing their writing, but EVERYONE did. And that was the glue that bonded everyone together... even the words were spoken: "I thought I was the only one who felt this way."
And THAT is why I love writing, writing retreats and groups. Because you find out how UN alone you really are.
By Sunday we were all exhausted, because we had processed so much through our writing, that we were a bit draggy; but very happy.
I kept hearing people talking of how the retreat was healing, and that really touched me. That is not necessarily what I went in to do, but process took over what needed to happen, did.
The women and men I met as strangers at the start of the retreat walked away as friends and all now reside in my heart.
We have formed a writing group and we met for the first time yesterday.
But more on that, later.