The Love Work
We often refer to the psychological process of coping with significant loss as “grief work.” We encourage each other to be present with the pains of loss, name what is wounded and hurting, and take time to process and heal. Grief work can’t be skipped, can’t be rushed, and can’t be avoided - unaddressed hurts can pop up to take us by surprise and steal our joy. Grief work asks us to both confront and acknowledge powerful emotions, but it also helps us honor who we’ve loved and what we’ve lost.
Yet, even if we’re standing fully in the truth and pain of our grief, we may still have some work to do in another area - and so we’re calling this our love work. What if we had the same imperative to open our hearts as we have had to heal them? What if we spent time exploring the emotion that helps us connect past with present and future? What if we took time to think about how we relate, how we care, how we protect ourselves, and how we tend to our own hearts? Love - it’s what we crave, what we avoid, what we miss the most, what we’re afraid to allow. It’s sometimes the hardest thing and sometimes the easiest thing.
Together, we’ll meet once a week talking about doing some love work - because we know that, just like grief work, the questions of self-worth, intimacy, expectations, boundaries, fear, and relationships - don’t get easier with postponement.
The Love Work is a virtual Women's Empowerment retreat that will run for five weeks and includes:
- Group Zoom Session: Each meeting will be about 90 minutes in duration. We will utilize both breakout rooms (small groups) and the larger group for these sessions. We will expect to see your lovely face at all of these every Tuesday at 6 p.m. Eastern.
- Big Feelings, Small Groups: In order to ensure we build strong and enduring friendships, we'll divide the big group into smaller cohorts. This gives you the opportunity to move through the programming with a small band of sisters there to support you and share the experience.
- Prompts, Projects, and Activities Galore: A variety of self-guided and group sessions will be available. Your choices of self-reflection, movement, creation, and "love work", projects, and activities should take up between 3-4 hours each week.
- Facebook Group: Participants will be invited into a private Facebook group for the duration of the experience. Participation is not mandatory; rather, we encourage you to use this platform as another way to share, connect, and process.
- Workbook: Prior to the start of the retreat, you'll receive a downloadable The Love Work Empowerment Workbook. It will be a printable workbook/journal that you'll use to guide yourself through five weeks of introspection and transformation.
All times listed below are in the Eastern time zone.
- Week 1: What does Love Look Like
Tuesday Cohort: April 20, 6 p.m.
- Week 2: Seeing Love Around Us
Tuesday Cohort: April 27, 6 p.m.
- Week 3: Love, Worth, and Self-Compassion
Tuesday Cohort: May 4, 6 p.m.
- Week 4: Love under Construction
Tuesday Cohort: May 11, 6 p.m.
- Week 5: Wrap-Up
Tuesday Cohort: May 18, 6 p.m
We ask that you commit time to this event just as you would if we could travel to be together. Of course, we'll have grace with ourselves and each other, but we'll expect you to make the effort to create a sanctuary for yourself in your own space. We want you to create a covenant of accountability and support with yourself and your sisters. The bonus of hosting a retreat online is we can create an extended event that ensures no one misses any of the magic; the requirement of a retreat online is your focused presence - also so no one misses any of the magic!
Plan to block out 5 to 6 hours each week in order to participate.
- We recommend blocking a full 2 hours to get settled before and spend some easy time with yourself after we conclude each 90-minute zoom session. A variety of self-guided and group sessions will also be available.
- Set aside 3 to 4 hours each week for self-reflection, movement, creation, and "love work" projects, and activities.
This retreat is open to women who are now more than three years out from their loss. If your loss occurred within the last three years, please let us help you choose alternate programming. There are many options and we want you to be a part of our community.
No Cost, Great Benefit: Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we are able to offer this experience to you at no cost.
Instead of an application, we ask you to fill out a statement of intention between March 26 and April 9, 2021 (look for the blue button at the top of this page at that time). This confirms you're willing to find the time, make the commitment, and show up for yourself and your sisters. After we confirm your statement of intention, you'll receive a link to registration.
If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-959-TAPS (8277).