Kelsey Writes

Retreating to the Creative


To move back. To withdraw. To change one’s decisions or plans. To enter a quiet or secluded place.

I spent this past weekend at a creative retreat. I’ll admit to being a little more intimidated by it than I needed to be. Essentially, it meant that I booked myself into a cozy cottage for the weekend and gave myself an excuse to spend all my time working on creative projects.

I’ve never attended a retreat of any kind before so I didn’t know what to expect or what progress I would come out of this weekend with. I thought I might have some time to refocus in on the poetry I’ve been neglecting for awhile now and that did happen. But as it turns out, this weekend was more about working on the most important creative project in my life: me.

I have a hard time defining exactly who I am. I’m the person that freezes when asked to tell a little bit about themselves or even worse… share a fun fact. In those moments, there is nothing interesting, let alone “fun” about me. It’s gotten a lot easier over the past few years as I have narrowed down my interests, have become more grounded and accepting of my body and have stopped letting outside opinions matter so much. Exploring personality theory has also been an important step in gathering the language to define who I am and what my values are.

Looking back, I like the term retreat and how many ways it fits this context so well. To withdraw physically to a quiet place undisturbed allows you to take another step back. To withdraw and confront the soul. Confront the mind. Confront the heart. When your focus is undivided, there’s nothing to hide behind, no pressing matter that pulls your attention away. The truth has no shield and nowhere left to run.

I’ll be honest with you: I have a lot of ugly truths. A lot of flaws that I don’t particularly care for but they’re mine and a part of who I am. I have a lot of beautiful truths in me too, many of which the world hasn’t seen bloom yet. Strengths that I often underestimate.

One truth though is this: it all comes back to is writing. The thing that started it all and will continue to keep presenting itself over and over as if to say, pay attention, this is important. That is why I’m writing this. This is me accepting that writing is my truth that I don’t want to hide from anymore and hoping that maybe it’ll help me discover new ones along the way.



  • Reply
    Scot MacDonald
    October 3, 2017 at 11:27 pm

    Good luck on your journey, Kelsey. I’ll be here with you every step of the way.


  • Reply
    Darlene O'Brien
    October 4, 2017 at 3:06 pm

    The first time I met you I thought, this young women is like the diary of a teenage girl, a book with a lock to which only she has the key. There are secrets in there, things she is afraid for others to know, stories she needs to tell so others can truly know who she is.
    Finally! She has opened the diary and thrown the key away.

    The dream that has gripped your heart has finally been release to become your reality.
    Tell your stories and inspire others, share you with the world and tell of the beauty that bring life to your soul.
    Ignite the dreams of others so that they too may fly in the direction of their creativity.
    Your gift will only be seen if taken from the box you so carefully hid it in.
    You are beautiful, strong, and courageous to give expression to your inner heart and mind.
    You are about to experience the joy which few of us dare … being who we were made to be.
    I will be reading and cheering you always wishing you well.

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