By Laura Laughlin, written as a part of Debby Gaines' Community-Based Writing class.
Could courage be contagious? Or could courage be a pheromone, that invisibly commutes in a community and like in a tribe of females living in close quarters, could the willingness to share flashes of Self, with a capital S, be passed from the mind and heart of one woman to the mind and heart of another?
In a dark and chilly basement, the warmth of community grew. With returning members who knew why they were there, and with rookies, such as myself, not certain what the class would be and if it would resonate.
Beautiful naked angels, the vital nature of expectations, dragon flies and spider webs, panther totems, revisiting childhood, dog as significant other/child/key source of joy, navel band-aid birth control. These are the flashes of beautiful Selves shared. Passionate prose and vivid poetry.
I watched these women walk through the fire of honest self-revelation. And they came out the other side. Intact. Maybe, improved? Could I tell a story that had pieces of ME in it, and survive? They made me believe that I could.
So it isn’t even necessarily about the Self. It is about the Honest. The breathtaking combination of words, that ring true. Like shooting stars in a mostly dark sky, their words illuminate and embolden. Words shared here, they are: A safe place to tell little truths, a game of peek-a-boo with my willingness to find my voice and to speak my truth. They are little pieces of honesty practice.