There is this thing you do at The Journey called group. The whole point of being there is to work on your story in a group setting. You meet together thirteen times over the course of five days to process the teaching sessions. And by process I mean participate in difficult discussion and experience conflict and then talk about how you felt about whatever it was that presented.
Two years ago I was in a co-ed group with a male and female leader. There were eight of us total, six participants and our fearless, kind, leaders. We connected.
When you struggle with safety and trust issues, it is extremely hard to let down your guard and risk sharing your heart with a group of strangers (albeit screened strangers). I had to work hard at this. I was determined, though, especially since someone had invested time and money into helping me attend.
I knew this opportunity was a gift, and I didn’t want to waste it. I wanted to prove that I was worth the investment. (This particular friend would insert here that it was a gift to have me there and that she was glad we were together and that I didn’t have to prove anything, but that’s what was going on inside of me, anyhow.)
I did it. I participated and shared and processed and listened and cried and struggled and tried to hide sometimes and was pursued. Kindly, of course. I’d invite you to consider…
Wednesday night after a particularly painful pursuit of process, one of our leaders reminded us that our time together was rapidly coming to an end. He was curious about whether we were serious about making progress and wondered if there was anything more we needed to bring to group before the end of the week.
This was hard for me to hear, as witnessed by a brief journal entry that evening before bed.
Tonight I felt confused in group. Perplexed was my word. Our leader challenged the group to more, and I heard, “Julie is monopolizing group time, calling attention to herself.”
It’s amazing how two lines can capture a lifetime of lies.
It’s also amazing that just when you think you can’t possibly leave group feeling any worse, you find out that you can.