Writing Together: Thoughts from Sam
"The difficult thing is that vulnerability is the first thing I look for in you and the last thing I'm willing to show you. In you, it's courage and daring. In me, it's weakness."
In this ongoing Writing Together series, I invite women to share their experience of a WTG in-person or online Circle or a WTG retreat.
What surprises you?
What brings you back?
Are there ripple effects in other areas of your life around connection, authenticity, vulnerability, boldness…?
Really, I'm looking for whatever comes to mind around this powerful, juicy topic of writing together, shared in whatever way feels best: blog-style, free-flow writing style, a few sentences, several paragraphs -- all is welcome -- no rules.
Here’s Sam, from the Summer GLOW, 2018 WTG Summer Retreat
I attended the first ever WTG retreat not having ever been to a circle. I went because Alyse is my friend and I wanted to support her, and I was curious...and the retreat looked pretty sweet.
I'll admit that had I been more tuned in to how the WTG circles went I may have been more nervous and resistant. Thank goodness I didn't tune in before I went! As we sat for our first circle I experienced a few moments of self doubt, criticism and reluctance and a second of "oh god...what have I gotten myself into."
But then Alyse explained, so beautifully, what the purpose of the circle is, why we free write and why we read our writing aloud. Ok, I thought...I'll play. And the first prompt was so gentle and there was no way to fail. Listening to the women read their pieces one at a time calmed my system and let me see each woman a little more clearly.
When it came my turn, it was easy. I felt fine and not at all judged. As the weekend and the writing and the prompts continued, we all dropped deeper and deeper into ourselves. The writing became more personal, more transparent, more brave, more vulnerable. There were tears and laughter, and more than anything there was a deep sense of connection and resonance. At the end of every single woman's sharing, all of us collectively made the sound "mmmmmm." Like, 'yes, sister, me too" or "oh, so much THAT...you said it beautifully, you captured what I feel".
There is something about being given a prompt, allowing the writing to take you on a journey and then sharing it that cuts through the layers of getting to know someone. I can't quite put my finger on it, except to say that it's quite magical.
I'm now a WTG circle addict. I will be at every single one I can, and you bet I'll be at the next WTG retreat because sitting in circles with women, witnessing their thoughts and hearts, and sharing my own is now part of who I am.
To all the women in my Circles: WTG Vegas, WTG Portland, WTG Zoom-Room (online) -- and women who've attended a WTG Retreat, I invite you to share your Writing Together experience. Put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard, let it rip, and send your reflections to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, because you never know how your words may land with someone who craves connection through communal writing but hasn't quite found the time or right fit.
Want to write?
Take a pen & prompt journey:
2. Keep your pen moving as you write the thoughts, feelings, and images that arise. Don’t stop to think or edit.
3. Accept ALL that you write - the pretty + ugly; absurd + boring. Discover what wants to be felt, known, expressed, released...