Way back in 2003 when we attended the International Conference in San Francisco, I went to it basically as a baby sitter. The twins where not quite ready to separate from mom for long periods of time, and it just seemed easier to attend then commit to the 4 hour round trip to SF each day driving would require. I figured we'd leisurely get up each day, go find something in the city to do, wonder back, do dinner and go to bed. I saw my role as keeping the kids busy so Cheri could do her thing.
Well, there are only so many things a 2 year old will enjoy (Zoo...hmm, that's about all I could find), and it was interesting hearing what Cheri was learning. So by day two, I was thinking mayyyyybeeee I ought to go to the sessions I'd signed up for (read Cheri told me to go since she couldn't attend 2 sessions at once). Turns out there where things here for people who weren't lactating (a feat I'm unlikely to accomplish). I learned more about this attachment parenting Cheri was always going on about, and saw how great all the kids where doing at the conference. I met a couple of other dads who where in the same boat as I was. We played in the various rooms set-up for kids and their caregivers. We had some lunches and dinners with the chance to meet some really great people.
Turns out this conference thing was a blast, which I was not expecting. Cheri is normally an extreme introvert, though if you meet her in July, you'd never know it. She just walks up to strangers and start talking away. I'm normally an extrovert, though in a large setting with lots of strangers, I clam up (something my coworkers find hard to believe!). But for whatever reason, I get along well with the LLLI crowd. At other conferences, I don't look forward to the meals; sitting around a table with a bunch of people that I don't know and don't share anything in common. That doesn't happen to me at LLL.
So, when Cheri mentioned the upcoming conference (back in 2005!!!!!), I was all for it.