I am blessed.
I have incredible women in my life.
Brave, gifted, creative, fierce, kind, compassionate, witty, funny, wise, strong women. Friends.
Dear, dear friends.
Some are plane rides away. Or subways. Or a couple of doors.
Our bonds hold no matter how much time has passed.
Which is so easy to take for granted in the minutiae of life.
Just with the friends in my own city it is uncanny how challenging it is to just be together.
In the same place. At the same time.
So many many reasons.
I have been been grateful just knowing they’re there. Somewhere.
I think even when I was younger I always had at least one or two stellar woman in my orbit.
But for a long time I didn’t know how to be with them. They seemed in my eyes to shine brighter.
To be other.
And for a while I was working this bullshit lone wolf thing.
I can do everything! All! By! My! Self!
And then last year I got all the feelings. The need. The longing. The missing.
I needed more.
My old-soul daughter, age 6, says of people you feel connected to, that you love or are attracted to that you feel magnetic them.
And magnets attract to each other.
And as some of my truest friendships have deepened I’ve realized that we all shine bright in each others’ eyes. We can and need to be vulnerable with each other. We can listen and empathize and joke and support and vent and laugh and cry and express and understand or not-but-be-there-anyway. And thrive.
And be totally and completely ourselves.
They are just as magnetic to me.
I have just as much to offer them.
I named 2016 My Year of Movement and Connection.
I am reaching out and showing up and I am asking for my people to connect with me like puzzle pieces. I am asking new people I feel a connection with to be my people.
I am joining in, taking part, belonging.
And fostering new shiny chains with beautiful powerful links.
What this does for my heart and soul and ego and smallness is pure magic.
It’s not dependency. Or neediness or burdening. It is fulfilling and energizing and goes both ways and is necessary.
It is support and love and being heard and being needed.
I did my 28-day healing cleanse in January with two other women. We never saw each other once but emailed each other almost daily from weeks before we started until today.
Help, support, soundboards, witnesses, guidance, cheerleading, recipes.
It got us all through and beyond.
Our little community was part of the healing.
On the first Monday in January one of my far away loves sent a group text to me and two others. We immediately responded and this 4-way text is still going on more than two months later. Sometimes it’s just good morning and a shout out to rock the day. More often, it’s day-long conversations between clients/meetings/family about our work and our challenges and showing up in the world and mountains that need to be moved.
We are literally in this together.
Every year, at the beginning of ‘treat, my annual women’s wellness extravaganza, I tell everyone they may be surprised by how much of an affect they will have on each others’ experience.
And I just watch.
I witness these women come together like puzzle pieces.
Clickclick. Oh, you’re my people? I wouldn’t have known. Yes you are my people!
The sharing, the stories, the openness, the acceptance – in a weekend – is remarkable. And when I realized many of them have stayed connected throughout the year(s), I got inspired to create The Well, a monthly gathering for all the alumni to deepen the bond, expand the circle, keep learning. To keep connecting. Clickclick.
To fill our well.
The sisterhood is the heart of the wellness.
And what might be the most beautiful lesson I’ve learned about myself – and what I see in each of us in my various orbits, is that the more we connect, the more of ourselves we become.
The connections don’t disconnect us from ourselves but help us recognize our true selves more clearly.
To shine brighter in our own eyes.
A community, even of two, is greater than the sum of its parts.
There’s nothing wrong with being a lone wolf.
But even she gets stronger touching base with the pack.
let’s rock this thing.
PS – Here’s the ever-awesome Brené Brown on connection, vulnerability and shame.