We can’t WAIT for November- it’s been two whole years since our five year Celebration in Chicago and it’s time to get this party started again! If you’re signed up and looking for a preview, or still haven’t made the plunge and need some convincing, here’s a list of the top 10 things we’re looking forward to at the 2019 GWG Annual Retreat:
1. Reconnecting with old friends. Ain’t no friends like GWG friends. Who would have thought that your ninja-like abilities to find a bathroom anywhere and everywhere, your undying love of Calmoseptine, the number of times you’ve survived docs getting up close and personal with your behind, or pooping into a bag would be your connection to some of the most amazing ladies you’ve ever met?! And if you haven’t met them yet, give it five minutes- you’ll feel at home at a GWG retreat like no where else.
2. A weekend in a new and beautiful place. When Elizabeth, our event coordinator, invited us to her neck of the woods, we couldn’t resist. And being the site of the CCF’s Camp Oasis in Colorado every summer, Camp Shady Brook already acquainted with the IBD community and excited to host GWG! Don’t be scared to spend a weekend away when it comes to this one- you’re spending time in a place and with a group that understands an is ready to meet your needs!
3. Late- night hilarity. Midnight fart-offs, anyone? The fun doesn’t stop when the lights go out- get ready for some ridiculous cabin moments that are sure to make you laugh until you cry (or fart some more?)
4. New activities like tie dye and axe throwing. If you’ve been to previous retreats, you have GWG shirts in sooo many colors, right? How about a new GWG shirt with ALL of the colors? Yeah, we thought that sounded perfect, too, especially for Colorado! Also, GWG retreats are all about pushing boundaries, so when axe throwing was offered as an activity, we couldn’t say no… show us another side of your strength!
5. Yoga with Elaine. When was the last time you got to take a yoga class from an ostomate? Elaine’s ready to talk about our unique, sometimes messy, and post-op bodies and teach us how to move gently and safely. Don’t miss this chance to interact with an instructor who truly gets your body and isn’t intimidated.
6. Awakenings Boutique/Ostomysecrets workshop. We all know that IBD or having an ostomy can have a pretty profound effect on your sex life. We have three amazing ladies ready to host an evening to chat about your needs, show you some products that can help, and help you to feel more sexy and confident in your own skin.
7. Learning about pelvic floor therapy. You may have seen conversations about pelvic floor PT pop up in our private Facebook forum, or even thought about exploring it yourself. Getting access to a pelvic floor PT can be difficult and not necessarily something your docs prioritize, so we’re bringing one to you! Liesel Jay, DPT can’t wait to spend time with GWG and teach us all about this amazing an underutilized discipline!
8. Talking about sexual health with Dr. Leslie Fuchs. You know all the questions you have about sexual health that your docs haven’t made time for or you haven’t wanted to ask? Well, this is the time and the place! Dr. Fuchs is a psychiatrist and ready to talk about it all, and you’ll be with ladies who are likely wondering about some of the same things as you!
9. Our Halloween party! With the time of year, we couldn’t resist- we’re finishing off the weekend with another GWG first. Whether you’re going solo or coordinating with a group, our costume contest is a place for your to highlight your personality, creativity, and even some good bathroom humor. Impress us!
10. Sisterhood. Even if you haven’t experienced in yet, you already know that being around GWG sisters is something truly soul-filling. If you’re a returning attendee, you already know!- get all of the hugs you’ve been waiting two years for!