October 4, 2016

The Business of Grieving, pt.1.

Grieving sure is a funny thing. People often describe grieving like waves in the ocean. Some moments are calmer, others are big huge tsunamis of emotions. This month in particular was more difficult for me. September marked 6 months since my husband passed. Again, some days were good, then the quiet of reality would hit and I was highly emotional, crying over nothing.

But then something magical happened to me this weekend. I attended Camp Widow in Toronto, ON. Camp Widow is by their own description "a unique and incredible experience. Over a weekend this program provides both practical tools and relevant resources for widowed persons rebuilding their lives in the aftermath of the death of a spouse or partner. But the most important thing that Camp Widow® provides to the widowed people who attend is an in-person community of others who are making their way through widowhood one day at a time. Campers come from all over the country, and around the world, to meet other widowed men and women face-to-face, and to experience the camaraderie that this event creates."

Attending something like this is highly unlike me. I'm a very shy person by nature and I have never traveled alone before. That in itself was very freeing. In my search for help in grieving I came across Soaring Spirits, the organization which puts on Camp Widow. I thought it sounded like a great place to finally talk to others who maybe understand how I'm feeling. There isn't much for grief groups here where I'm from. I only personally know one other widow my age, and none with children. So I took a leap of faith and decided to attend. Thankfully with support from my parents who would take care of my children, I went to Toronto for 3 days to attend and what a life changing decision it was.

There was just something about sitting in a group with others who actually want to hear your story and share theirs too. There's no worry about making someone feel uncomfortable talking about your love one, we've all lost our person. We cried, we laughed, we hugged, and most importantly we made new friends. As someone who is still new to this, I found so much comfort in hearing from others who are further in the process than I am. This experience brought a lot of Hope for my futureand brought me a new perspective on my life moving forward. I now understand that I can have Hope again and Hope elevates you.

Losing my husband has sent me on a new Journey of self discovery. At this transition time in my life, I don't know what I'm going to do in the future, but I can proudly say I am stepping into this time with courage and strength, in part thanks to Camp Widow, its hosts, presenters and fellow campers. I cant thank them enough for how they have helped me.

Going to share a few more lessons I took away from camp soon.

Long Live Love,

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