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Mighty Summit

I have a bad habit of ignoring things in proportion to how much they mean to me. I think it has to do with the disease of perfectionism. If you send me a benign email that can be answered in one word, you'll probably get an immediate response. If you send me a beautiful heart-warming message I'll say to myself, "Oh wow, this is so lovely. I'm going to have to wait until I can send back the PERFECT, most well-thought-out response in the history of mankind". Translation: It will sit in my inbox for so long that responding feels asinine. And as a result, the people who mean the most to me become neglected. Boo. Right? I think I need to order Brene's book asap.

Because the same thing goes for blogging. I've had some of the most life-changing experiences over this past summer, yet I've had such a block up when it comes to writing about them. It's like, there's so much I want to say that my mind short-circuits into silence. 

But I'm working on it, starting right now with The Mighty Summit. So let me tell you how it happened. One day, I was reading Maggie's blog about last year's Broad Summit, and she mentioned that this year they were opening it up to applications. Never one to turn down a girl's trip, I immediately applied. And then I forgot about it because I was 99% sure I wouldn't be selected.

*Note* Tara wrote a fantastic post about putting yourself out there "how the 'no' we hear should never come from our own lips." Amen sister! And it turns out that sometimes the answer is yes! Because weeks later, an email appeared saying that I'd be joining these incredible women in the redwoods, to drink wine and roast marshmallows. And by the way it was paid for. DUDES. I'm sure I screamed for five minutes. 

And then I stressed over losing weight (of course). And finding the right outfits to wear (of course). 

And then I got there and realized I'd been stressing for nothing (of course).

This group of women is so remarkable. I adore, and was so inspired by each and every single person there. I know that sounds so shmoozy. But it's just true. I love them. And ever since I've been back, I've been wishing the internet would please just move into my neighborhood already. 

Thank you Maggie, Helen Jane and Laura for creating this incredible experience, for allowing me to be a part of it, and for inspiring so many women to live their lives more courageously. It was a gift. And for anyone who wasn't able to go this time, guess what? I think next year it will be open to anyone!

Okay, now this is the part where I mention that my other bad habit is not taking pictures in proportion to the level of fun that I'm having. I literally forced myself to grab it a few times, so these are just a bunch of random moment snapshots (cleaned up in PS). If you want to see more, you can look through the Zan's flickr set. She photographed the whole weekend, and I was lucky enough to have her as a roommie too. 


What's not pictured here (that you'll see in Zan's set) is the highlight of my whole trip when we were in the wine cave. I mean, for one WHO KNEW THERE WAS SUCH THING?! And second, who knew how amazing it could be to talk about your dreams in one, especially with a group of women who was so willing to offer up ways to help you achieve them. It was nothing short of magical. And if you want to read more about it, mostly everyone who was there (aside from me) is a real actual writer. Maggie has a great wrap up with links to their posts here

I have to also mention that another (slightly unrelated) highlight for me was driving RIGHT PAST our old house on the way in. It's been seven years since we left, and I feel like I've lived fourteen lifetimes. It felt somewhat serendipitous for a separate event like this to be swinging me right back where I started, like a reminder of how far I've come from the sad, home-sick girl crying on the laundry room floor when we first moved away.  

The little house that used to be painted pink, is now beige and being guarded by a doberman pincher with anger issues. Oh well. It was still a moment. 

Next up, why I've been traveling almost every week since June, plus photos and stories from Paris and England! 

Reader Comments (19)

That moment captured in that last picture will never stop making me HOWL with laughter.
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle
Oh, how I love that first photo! We are all just post posing, I think, so we look so natural.

I really miss you lady. I think of your sweet smile several times a day, and I had to resist the urge to caress the Epiphanie bags I saw at the Type-A Mom conference because they reminded me of you. I looked a bit like a love-sick teenager when I saw those bags, me thinks. :)
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCecily
oh my god i love you. i really do. how you describe your inbox and use of the word asinine, i SO relate! love these photos and can't wait to see more love!
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermeredith winn
What an amazing experience that must have been for you. and paid for! talk about a bonus. Im glad you got to bond and spend time with your lovelies. Im off to find out more about your friends :)
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTracy Wallace
Meeting you was MY highlight. You are so amazing and inspiring!!!

September 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterheather...
We've missed you and your blog! AND what a cute house.
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMegan
love the shot of your old house...tells so many stories in one frame.
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterrachel
Great pictures! LOVE the house!!! Not the dog. ;)
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenHef
You forgot the part about when you were telling us stories at dinner, making us pretty damned near incontinent with laughter.

Just saying.

(amazing images, friend)
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKaren/Chookooloonks
I can't even explain how much I love that photo of Mena. I'm so glad you captured the things you did because even though there were dozens of other cameras, no one saw the things you did in quite the way you saw them.

Again, it was so, so, so great to meet you in person. You are magnificent.
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteragirlandaboy
maileeeee!, i can understand the difficulty putting the experiences you've had into words.. you've made a great start!, it's looked like a blast with ladies full of energy and colour.
that shot of you by your old house is super cool, love the sneaky you in the corner.

you rock! big time! x.
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterxanthe
Wow, your sweet Sebu home really does feel lifetimes away, no?
Baby Chance, the Veggie-Tale junky! Your loungy bedroom...
the extravagant Mama's Day luncheon and Kelly napping on a blanket
under the tree with her baby... and your lavish hugs.

We've always been rich.
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMa'
I love the last picture, of course. My how we laughed! You captured the dog and the clouds. All that's missing is the mystery tattooed arm.

I learned so much about photography riding with you and Karen that first day. I miss you, girlie!
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRoxanna
I printed out the shoe shots to put up at my desk at work (sneaky) to remind me of JOY and of ESCAPING to do my own work.

Also, we need to have a heart to heart about authentic clothes, girlfriend. I'm also tackling that puzzle this year, and finding it tricky, and keep thinking of you and wondering how you're working on that problem.
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMeg
I love all of the photos, especially of me. That sounds arrogant. But what I mean is, you captured my "fun lady" side. I love that!
September 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmber, theAmbershow
Your first paragraph: YES. I feel the EXACT SAME WAY. I might even use that paragraph in an upcoming post of my own. Quoted, of course.

The rest of it - LOVE IT. So glad you overcame the perfection monster and posted. Real posts, imperfect but posted anyway, are the BEST.

And the photos - love them! You are so talented. And hard-working.
September 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLeah Bean
Oh I just adore you and not just because you serve the best flaming marshmallows ever!

And dang girl, your photos?


October 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlli Worthington
i am the same exact way! you put into words perfectly. awesome post :O)
October 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commentershawna
Your first paragraph completely summed me up to a T... something I could never quite put into words for even myself, so explaining it to my loved ones has always been a challenge. Thanks :-)

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