I just finished another Kneading Brotherhood Retreat, KB~3. in Park City Utah. What a wonderful place to have a retreat. It was lovely.
I have to say that the weeks leading up to a retreat are stressful for me. The stress of providing an experience that will be meaningful and enriching for the men attending is overwhelming to me. And the simple fact that men are paying to have this experience is also a huge factor.
I guess I can say I tend to stress. It is part of who I am . I want to do my best and am filled with anxiety over these weekends. From the food to the location, I stress.
Up to the event and during I tend to ask myself, "What were you thinking, who do you think you are, are you OUT of your mind".
Yes, it can be overwhelming. But I have to say that all the stress, all the anxiety, all the work is worth it. I have learned that hard things often times bring the greatest joy.
Each retreat is completely different is every way. The activities are the same, the core is there, but when you have a totally different group of men each time is totally changes the dynamics of what is happening. Men of different faiths, backgrounds, beliefs, and understandings, it tends to create totally new learning opportunities each time. I love that. I love the fact that for me I totally learn new things about myself and about men.
One thing I have learned is that all men are on a journey, and most men struggle with the same things. Our faiths and backgrounds may be different, some are married and some are single, some deal with same sex attraction and others have no idea what that looks like, careers are different, and family situations are varied, but when it comes right down to it we are all on the same journey in many ways.
We are all trying to feel connection, succeed in our careers, understand others, become our best, love our families, and grow closer to our God.
So when a group of men gather for the weekend, amazing things happen. One of the greatest I think is the understanding that we are not alone in our journey. That we do not stand alone in our aloneness and our feelings of not being enough. We come to understand and have compassion on ourselves and others. It is an amazing experience in every way.
Kneading Brotherhood was created with the goal in mind to help men understand that creating healthy meaningful brother to brother friendships can indeed make the journey better. Having the support of men who love you and understand just what brotherhood is all about can be a life changing experience. Men need men in their lives and learning how to navigate that in a world that has discouraged deep meaningful transparent connection can be life changing is so many ways.
Each retreat I leave a better person and I grow in my understanding of my role in reaching out to my brothers everywhere. I am more compassionate and have more empathy for all men in their own personal journeys and most of all I leave understanding just how much we need each other.
Kneading Brotherhood has changed my life forever. I have seen and felt Gods hand in this work and look forward to growing and becoming a better brother to all men.