Rarely do any of us have the opportunity to meet and reconnect with so many courageous and dynamic people in a single venue. This conference was one of those uncommon moments.
While in this year's story-telling session, and in a few informal group discussions, I found myself thinking about my daily life, and interactions with family, friends and co-workers - and about how superficial most of our conversations really are. In almost "third-grade book report" format, we recount the events of the past weekend or gossip about some trivial situation. But for four days, I had the pleasure of listening and talking about things that truly matter - that get at the roots of human experience, identity, joy and pain. I had more candid, honest and meaningful conversations than I have had for months.
It was both exhilarating and exhausting.