What I’ve learned…

What I’ve learned…
Going backward before you go forward. Reflecting back to 2019.

Ironically, this was written before the uncertainty of the events we face today.  In the chaos of life, I am grateful for the gift of time and reflection. I see now more than ever, this post is appropriate.

As the new year begins, typically I try and reflect on a word that best describes the year in review-a glance in the rear view mirror as I reflect on what best describes my experiences in 2019. What can I take away from each experience as I work to move forward.

This is a lesson I learned early in my grief journey from my mentor, Dr. Alan Wolfelt.  He taught me that in grief, many times, we go backward before we move forward.  For me, I know this to be true. Has it happened to you? So often people say to me, “I thought I was doing good. It felt as though I was turning a corner and making progress, then wham,  I feel like I’m back at the beginning.”  I tell them, buckle up, wear a helmet and maybe additional padding is needed for this roller-coaster ride called GRIEF. It’s a one way ride of ups and downs, twists and turns, lows and highs.  “Does it ever end?”, they ask.  With a gentle reply, I answer, “No”. But the ride changes, it gets different. The highs carry you to the next low.  The twist and turns are not so sharp. They don’t take your breath away as often. It gets different.  Without realizing it- HOPE begins filter in.

In 2019, the Brian Dagle Foundation and Brian’s Healing Hearts reached thousands of people with their mission, “Anchored in Hope”- and empowered to support, is dedicated to the healing of grieving adults as well as community education on suicide prevention and awareness. Every support group, workshop, suicide prevention education training program, and every fundraiser, hope was the underlying theme. There is smiles in between tears.  There is an understanding that it’s ok to ask for help and to know that people care-knowing you are not alone. 

Hope is my word for 2019.