The evening started with a cloudy window, smoke swirling across the street from a burning building. Our hearts began to worry, curious of what had happened and concerned if everyone made it out okay. Thankfully, those who were coming from that area arrived safely on location. We began our journey in one of our favorite rooms at the The Yard on Eastern Market. A conference room that seemed perfectly made for our gatherings. The light pours in beautifully from all sides of the room, painting our guests with the most beautiful hues from the sun. It didn’t take long for ladies to pour themselves a drink, which was either red wine or tasty apple cider from Trader Joe’s. TIS THE SEASON! After everyone grabbed some noms we wiggled in our seats and awaited to hear from our leaders, Megan Morrison and Catherine Wood.
Introductions were short and sweet. Most of the group hadn’t experienced an Authentic Relating Games before, so we all got looped in on what to expect for the evening’s activities. Essentially, it entailed directed prompts that you’d work on with a partner or the entire group to “fall more in love with yourself.”
We know that we all live in a city that pushes, a city that has high expectations and rarely tones it down. So how do we learn to push through those pressures and come out strong, confident, and worthy through a culture that constantly puts that into question?
One participant said, “Oh man, is it okay to talk about feelings.. OH SHIT it’s too late.”
We feel yah girl, but that’s why we all came together for this. To be in a non-judgemental space so we are able to let go and not feel guilty for opening up.
Parts of our discussion revolved around how our inner critics gets in the way of self love! There’s this constant internal battle that we tend to allow live because of what we think we’re not excelling in.
“I’m not the perfect mother.”
“I’m not good enough to find anyone.”
“How can I love this body when it can’t fit in the same jeans anymore?”
The self criticism is never ending and this time together was to learn to recognize those demons and start learning how to put them out.
One of our favorite excercies was circling up on the floor and telling the person next to you something that YOU needed to hear and that woman was meant to look back at your with love and say, “thank you,” and turn to the next woman and share something they needed to hear…you get it? We had women saying, “You’re perfect just the way you are,” “Your mother doesn’t need to be saved,” “You don’t have to pretend any longer.” Sometimes the messages were the right ones for the ladies receiving as well. The power of presence, nurture, and community was alive during this session.
We finished the evening sharing in small groups someone we ADORED & LOVED in our lives. We had to describe them in two minutes…then surprisingly we had to talk about ourselves with the same amount of passion as we did about that first person. Are you able to get as excited about how awesome you are just like you did about a friend or family member? That was the challenge at hand. What is missing from our lives to want to think of ourselves as enthusiastically as someone we cherish in our everyday? We’re asking you to stop hiding in plain site.
We want to thank all the beautiful souls that came and joined us for something new. We were so thrilled to see the amount of women who showed up and willing to give 100% of this session. Cat and Meg were ecstatic with the openness and willingness to put yourself first and the energy was noticeable and heartfelt. If you missed out, no worries, we’re hoping to have another next year.
If you’re wanting to join our Dominican Republic Retreat where it’s 6 nights and 5 days of heart centered work and a whole lot of chillin, please visit: http://packretreats.com/trips/dominican-republic/. It doesn’t not matter if you are not from D.C. to join us! Our early bird entry is closing on October 5th, so throw down your $500 deposit before pricing starts rising. CAN’T WAIT FOR THIS and looking forward to seeing the women who have already registered.