Our Dreams Are Giving Us Away
"i tried to pass for nothing
but my dreams gave me away"
-bright eyesI had no idea what to expect when I arrived in Kingston for the weekend womens retreat (ReTREAT) put on by Beth Brewster owner of Kingston Adventures. I took the ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge. Drove through the canopy of pines, interrupted only by mailboxes, cows and one casino to the house I would be staying at for the next two nights. In the back of my car I had the shorts and tees I'd selected for each name and size listed on the excel spreadsheet I'd been sent months prior. Extras tucked in there in case people misjudged their size.
Soon enough the excel list would transform into people. A 'SarahSizeSmall' would arrive, she'd actually be a size xsmall and have two kids and bright, endearing smile. And so on. I was excited to meet everyone, and of course a little anxious about this new experience as a part-sponsor of a women's retreat.
First off I found out I was sleeping in the laundry room, which everyone thought was funny. But I loved it! I slept so hard in my dryer sheet infused nook. After checking out my digs, I went upstairs to match shorts and tees to be laid out on each bed. Holy swag: GoLite trail, Oiselle shorts and tee, Amphipod water bottle, Bonk Breaker bar, Recofit calf compression sleeves, Run Like a Mother book, a free drink at Cup & Muffin, Fitsok socks...
One by one the women arrived. Some from Kingston and many from the other side of the water. We went out on the stand up paddle boards, and generally played until it was time to meet each other with a name game. After, Sarah Bowen Shae read from her (and Dimity's) book, Run Like A Mother. Her reading was followed by the best dinner I've had in ages. Dinners (and one lunch) were catered by Molly Ward Gardens. Ah-maz-ing. The first night we had salmon and cucumber salad, green beans and then chocolate cake with homemade whipped cream.
After dinner we were at the main event. A goal ceremony. Each woman had been thinking of their goal for months. They walked up spoke their goal outloud to this mix of known friends and new friends, lit their candle and set it to bob along side the others in the glass bowl. There was laughter as some flames dipped into water and needed to be relit and claps to encourage everyone. An attentive silence for each goal unwrapped, however timidly.
Sometimes I feel like a detached observer of the world. Especially women. I watch us, them in a way. With voices small, speak their goals. And I know watching them that they can do it, they will do and they may still never know it. And I want that to change. I am the same way. I know what I can do, and sometimes, damn, don't I just say it. But I also have moments where look at my feet and whisper my goals. "I think...." "Maybe..." "Yeah I'm sort of a runner...."
The goal I spoke was not to sell myself short, but not to lose myself in the process. I can hide my talent and guts, I have the past 5 years. But I'm finding them again. I have been afraid to uncover that part of myself. Afraid I'd have to lose my other parts. A woman this weekend said she was afraid of success. Me. too. I want to be a fast runner, devoted. But I want a balance. A night out to see music, a time to write, a time to drink wine, to eat cake, to see friends.
But if I'm honest the part of this balance I'm missing right now is coming clean that I have BIG goals. It's time to stop trying to pass for nothing. I'm not nothing and none of us are. And our dreams are giving us away.