Spring has had a slow, cool, and very wet start in our part of the world. This week has brought sunshine and warmth to everyone’s delight! The grass is green, trees are blooming and neighbours share conversations as they tend to their gardens and mow their lawns. It’s like we are all breaking free of our winter cocoons, eagerly getting outside and turning our faces to the sun.
This spring has been a perfect analogy for my business. I took a leap of faith almost two years ago to begin a coaching business helping women develop a clear vision for who they are and how to show up fully in their lives for themselves and others. It’s been a slow start, in part because I have multiple skills and abilities and what I was lacking was a sense of cohesiveness. It always felt like there was a piece of the puzzle missing.
The one thing I have always been clear on is my purpose. Connection. Creating an authentic connection to myself, to others and to the world around me. Living life wholeheartedly. This has evolved to helping others do the same for themselves. These have been the seeds of my desire, planted in my garden of life many years ago, and over the years the harvests have been beautiful! I have been fortunate to contribute and serve as a police officer, holistic nutritionist and personal trainer. It has been a privilege to share other people’s journeys and watch them step into their brilliance and change their lives in ways that are most meaningful to them.
Now I am preparing to plant a new garden: helping others move beyond grief and loss. Grief is a normal and natural reaction to loss. It is also one of the most neglected and misunderstood experiences that we all face and one that most of us are ill-equipped to respond to.
Earlier this year I shared with you that I had come to an awareness that I had to heal my heart. This came as a result of feeling an almost constant ache in my chest that couldn’t be explained physically. It was also a sense that I was holding back from stepping fully into my business and I couldn’t understand why. This was the impact of unresolved grief. At the time, I didn’t know it as grief, I just knew that I couldn’t keep feeling the way I was. I found an incredible woman and coach that took me on the journey to grief recovery.
One of my discoveries was that when I experienced loss, I had a habit of isolating myself because expressing painful feelings felt like weakness. I had observed early in life that most people are uncomfortable around a grieving person. We don’t know what to say or do. Who can blame us? We get more training in first aid than we do around death, divorce, and any of the other emotional losses we experience. Besides, I had been a police officer for crying out loud! I “had to be strong”, for others as well as myself. I became adept at shifting my emotions to my intellect…so easy to do since I was far more practiced at thinking than feeling. The problem with that is, grief is about a broken heart, not a broken brain. Trying to heal my heart with my head was like trying to “paint with a hammer” — it was the wrong tool for the job! The outcome was that I never fully recovered from those losses and over the years, the grief accumulated. I created barriers to the love, support, and truly authentic connections I wanted. Not in an obvious way, but rather unconsciously.
Unresolved grief is like having weeds in the garden. If we don’t remove them correctly they keep coming back. They impede the other plants and flowers from flourishing and diminish the beauty of the garden. They need to be removed by the root. My journey to grief recovery was simple, but not always easy. I had to be willing to be completely honest about the emotional truth of my losses. I had to be willing to take responsibility for my present reaction to those losses, and I had to be willing to take the correct action to complete those relationships that were the source of my unresolved grief. I committed to all of this and in the process I found — and continue to find — healing and liberation. I also found my missing puzzle piece! Now I am trained to help others complete and move beyond loss. So these are the seeds I am sowing in this season’s garden. Helping people heal their hearts so they can expand their capacity for happiness. To be fully alive and free.