spectating participant

June 2, 2005

catching up and reflection

Filed under: unlisted — suzanne henderson @ 9:45 pm

Alone in the house tonight, Alex went with Megan to see Alex’s gymnastic thing. Chris has his rifle club meeting tonight. Just me and a movie and lots of thoughts.

I keep going back to PDF, mostly due to stuff on lists and also actual events that I was involved in. This PDF I expected everything to break but I didn’t give energy to it and instead decided to pull through with the best that I could do. My therapist loves to remind me of my endless self-fulfilling prophecies, so I try to avoid that when I think of it. And I’m glad I didn’t walk through the gates waiting for everything to break. Instead, I was constantly amazed at the energy, the vibe, everything that I encounter, that I did not expect to see.

Everyone I met and talked to and hung out with were basically new people to me. Many had been to PDF before and for others it was their first time. I am normally so tied to being shy and so trapped, in a way, within my own preset circles of friends, that I don’t talk with new people or connect with them. This was what I needed. I needed to see that new people are not the enemy, that we can continue to grow and provide a great event to new and old people. I was happy to see that some people get it right off the bat and that others get it by the end of the weekend. Sometimes, after years of doing this, I forget what it was like the first time I showed up at a burn, the first sparks of energy I had, the way the whole world changed for me and how I suddenly knew that there were endless possibilities of creativeness out there.

But in all this happiness, there is one event that still makes me uncomfortable and reminds me that I am not ranger material, nor am I site contact material. I am not good when things crumble, I hide behind other people too much, and worry too much about everyone instead of just focusing on one issue. I can say that I kicked an issue sideways and let it remain at that, mentally wash my hand of the entire incident, but that isn’t an honest evaluation. I can honestly admit that it was way more complicated that I was able to fully handle on my own and I am glad others stepped up to the plate to help deal with it. I can’t say I was terribly pleased with the overall resolution, but it is one that I accepted at the time. And, had it gone the other way, I would have been just as uncomfortable and supportive of it then.

And now, as more information is reveal, more takes on one story, more statements made, it is really hard to not get pulled down by it. I understand that we are fallible and that we made the best decision based on the information that we had at the time. However, that information doesn’t help the fact that I know how distressing and upsetting this entire event is for the community as a whole and the people in general. I am not good with these situations, nor am I good at figuring out where to place these feelings and what exactly they are. It is really hard when, now with the new information and with the additional time to let this simmer, I wish that our actions had been different, that my actions had been different.

I still feel that the step we took, as a first step in resolution and not to imply it was to be the final or only step, was a valid and reasonable set of action. But it is so hard to accept that now, when new information has been provided that would have made a difference then. And, it is hard because I continue to hold responsibility for this, though I know that is not actually the case. Sigh, I’m dragging down with this, that inescapable feeling of having done wrong, having not lived up to expectations, of having upset people, of having disappointed. I continue to carry the energy of the community and the responses with me everywhere and haven’t been able to get out from under them. I will never ranger again, I have thought before that I was not cut out for it, and now I am reminded again that it is not the task for me. Though, does that also mean that I am not fit for serving on the board either?

I have extremely high expectations for PDF. I want to see it continue to grow in a positive manner. I feel that we need people who’ve been around for a while to remain in the folds to keep some ideas held fast. We’ve seen a great amount of change, in ideas, support, and people–which is a good thing– but I also feel that we lose some of our core values when it is a revolving door of planners and planning goals. I’ve got a lot to think about, a lot. I hope that I can back off from this situation somewhat, I may need a break from the lists for a little while, but I doubt that I will leave. I’ve too much invested in this community and this event to walk away now. Things happen, choices are made, sometimes they are right and sometimes they are not, but it is still part of growth, wether we want this kind of growth or not.