The dinner is usually a time where people share, but they don’t necessarily go very deep. Well, what our Victoria alumni did was paramount to being real. As we went around the room sharing a brief history of ourselves, our names, it became clear quite early that the group was wanting more.
I usually pick random alumni to start the discussion and this night was no different. What was different, though, was the level of depth and vulnerability the guys went into. They shared recent struggles with relationships, their emotions fully on their sleeves, their long lost passions resurfaced and finding what makes them tick again. It was a group that knew that it was a safe place to share anything and all of it. It was a real and it was raw.
The night went on and it was the same band of brothers’ feeling I get at most dinners, but this particular group was wanting; reaching for the support of their peers, their comrades, their community. A lot of them reminisced at how safe the Centre was, how they missed it, how it was like home, and when they left they felt like it was the feeling of leaving family behind.
We left with handshakes, hugs, and see you soon’s. A night of sharing I’ll never forget.