In typical fashion, I am doing things backwards. I attend then I describe why I came and what it meant to me. I wish I could say I was purposeful in doing so, but I cannot. I wasn't joking about Gerry practically dragging me to the conference kicking and screaming. I went to make him happy. That's all I wanted to accomplish. And secondarily I wanted to meet folks like Phil and Jon. This may seem silly, but I only now get, through an email exchange with Chris, just what I contributed. I didn't have to have grand ideas to present. I just had to be myself. Much easier than I thought. I found the whole idea so daunting, hence my reluctance. I am not a professional. I am a stay at home mom. How helpful is that? And how incredibly boring, at least to me. I was going to post ahead and mention that I'm an active listener. I am also good at offering encouragement. Beyond that, all I had was a shoulder shrug. But there I was, an open person in open space. Just hanging out being authentic and vulnerable. And childlike. Realizing that there's perhaps a peculiar benefit to having little self-confidence. This allowed me to have no assumptions about what I might contribute. And, then, after the fact, allows me to enjoy the fact that I did. I told stories based on my experience. That's what I do. I look for a way to connect. To me it was all just a huge conversation. The more I could relate, the more I felt compelled to leap in. Not so self-consciously, either. What an incredible group of people. I am enriched by those who shared pieces of their lives with me.