Holding Space in your heart was something that I first heard about on one of my cancer retreats with the Callanish Society. I had never heard this before and really did not truly know what it meant. My vivid memory of the Callanish retreat was crying more than I have ever cried in my entire life. I remember sitting in a circle and sharing our losses and as each person spoke it was like they were speaking for me. But there was one person…who I will never forget…who changed my life in that very room forever. A young man, so full of love, kindness and wisdom but his life was soon coming to an end. How can this be…how is this fair and how can I ever be sad about the little upsets in my life…I have the privilege to live.
This year has been full of memories, new friendships, leaning about farm life and creating a new community for our family. It has also been a year of many great losses. A dear family friend (whom I called Mommy), our neighbor who was like a grandfather to Abigail and Nolan, a cherished friend from our Callanish retreat and one of my best friends Crystal.
I was not sure that it was possible to have enough space in my heart for all these beautiful people to leave so soon in such a short period of time. I did not have the power to make them stay…so I had to say goodbye.
What I have learned is that life will always bring dark and difficult times. Just like the tide…it ebbs and flows. Learning to feel and stay in the difficult times…cry, scream, punch a pillow, allow the emotions to come is all part of being human and growing as a person. Feelings are meant to be expressed not suppressed. Allowing ourselves to feel helps us to reset and live a more authentic life. Somehow in the end there is always good that comes out of the difficult times. When people pass away…people come together.
Thank you to the Janie, Danielle and the ladies of Callanish. I will never forget all you have taught me.
The Callanish Society creates a healing space for people who have been irrevocably changed by cancer.