Seems like with every year added to our age after 50, we find ourselves regarding our women friends as ever more precious. Is it just time, a matter of these friendships growing in strength over the years? Possibly. But I think it’s more a matter of our own wisdom and experience that makes us pull together and value one another like never before. We’ve learned that our husbands or partners cannot satisfy every need for sharing and companionship that we have, and that’s OK, because our friends can provide the same value. We’ve stopped comparing and competing in favor of simply appreciating. We’ve developed deeper compassion. And we’ve learned, through loss and wisdom, that nothing is forever and today – right now – is the time to savor and embrace life.
One of the best settings I know to celebrate and nourish ourselves through our women friends is at an annual event called Women At Woodstock, a national gathering for women just outside of Woodstock, NY. I’ve been several times, and every experience has been eye-opening, comforting, warm and welcoming, and inspiring. And my circle of friends has grown because of it.
Women At Woodstock is actually two separate events held every October; the Women At Woodstock Workshop Weekend October 11-15, for women over 50 (workshops, walks, networking, wine, healthy food, and a mastermind session); and the Women At Woodstock Writers Retreat October 15-19, for women writers of all ages, both novice and experienced.
Both retreats are held in a beautiful eco-friendly lodge in the woods outside Woodstock, New York. Started by Ann Voorhees Baker back in 2012, the gatherings have grown in depth and richness over the years, and have spawned life changes, career launches, books written, and many friendships that stretch all over the country and have held strong for years.
I highly recommend both of these events. The Workshop Weekend is the event to attend for any woman over 50 seeking a new “tribe” to call her own or a forum to express her dreams and gain encouragement and practical support. The Writers Retreat is for women of any age who are or aspire to be writers. You will find much to nourish and inspire you at either retreat.
To find out more about Women At Woodstock, click here. And if you attend, let me know! I’d love to hear about what you learned, changes you might have decided to make, and the friendships you forged. Enjoy!