Others are sprawling, filled with human connection, emotion, experience, and life-altering experiences.
I would say camp falls in the latter category.
This was my 5th Leather Retreat, and by far the strangest. I played much less than usual, and most of my play was with one person. I taught 4 classes, and had a good amount of attendees for all of them. And this time, I didn't feel quite as much part of the event, opting instead to stay siloed within my own little world.
It was a very emotional weekend. Change was all around, and it was sad, and hard, and will be for quite some time. Events have occurred that will affect my life and those who mean the most to me. There will be some pain and heartache in the days and weeks to come.
Doors open and close. Relationships change. People change. Knowledge that you had becomes past tense. Things you thought you knew become things you don't. People change at their own speed, and when two people walk a path and one changes speed and direction without the other, it hurts. It's natural, but it hurts. Lots. It's hard to figure out what direction to go when the one you wanted becomes closed off.
I have a lot of people to thank for this weekend. I have to say, this has been one of the most amazing Oink cabins I have ever been in. I do not think we could have surrounded ourselves with a better group of loving, supportive, open human beings anywhere else. We had experiences together, and we loved together, and we shared each other's joys and pain. We leaned on each other, and we learned from one another. Thank you.
Finally, in times of heartache and stress, sometimes a golden ray of sunlight manages to make an appearance. I really must make a special call out to eisa. She managed to assimiliate herself into a cabin full of people she didn't know, situations that she had no history with, and was burdened with lots of responsibility. She was in the middle of the emotional hurricanes that took place, and yet... anytime you looked at her precious face, she had a smile waiting for you. She understood, she cared, and she stayed with me and my friends through it all. She took on a burden that I would never have asked her to do... and was amazing throughout.