I have spent the last few days settling in after what must have been a dream: A Taproot Gathering at Squam. Did that happen? Yes. There are pictures to prove it.
The retreat was so much more than the sum of it's parts. It was more than interesting classes, beautiful scenery and a break from daily stresses. It was calm, quiet and gentle. It was fun and exhilarating. I had the pleasure to meet some beautiful people who I had previously only known through a screen. I took sweet Phoebe's class, A Return to Play. I made a little doll, but took away so much more. Sitting around a table chatting and laughing with these lovely women, while hand stitching little dolls and creatures without judgement was the perfect way to spend a day.
I do think the most meaningful moments happened outside the structure of the retreat, during passing conversations, shared meals and in cabins by the fire. My roommate, Shannon, was a perfect companion during the days I was there. She was thoughtful, funny and kind. I do think I've made a new forever friend. Everyone I spent time with was clearly there to connect. The conversations were real and meaningful. I even had a few conversations with Amanda. I've followed her since I became a mother and meeting her was so special. She was just as lovely as you would expect. A calm and gentle presence. Our other host, Elizabeth, was warm, welcoming and exuberant.
I have always been a grounded person, not easily swept up into the feeling of a place, especially if it's a 'zen' feeling. I wondered whether that quality would stand in the way of fully experiencing a retreat like this. Would everyone else 'get it', and I'd be left out? Would it be magical to others, but simply a change of scenery and some fun classes to me? Well, I am here to say that there was something magical happening there. There was a kindredness I felt very much a part of. It was simple and special and just what I needed.
And after all that, I am so very happy to be home with my people, with a renewed sense of peace and purpose and connectedness. The world is a wondrous place and I feel so lucky to have experienced one more magical piece of it.
Next, I'll have to share with you a bit about the Squam Art Fair. I was a vendor (for the first time)!