Guest post by Jan McDaniel

Just for today, I will light a candle that smells like lotus blossoms.
As I watch the tiny flame, I will imagine it fighting back the darkness of great sorrow.

That’s power.

I will remember your touch.
A gentle hug, the way your hand reached out to me in times of pain.

I will listen to soft music and practice my original blend of Qigong, gentle yoga, and Pilates.
I’m not good at any of those, but that’s okay. I have to move or I won’t be able to move.

I’ll try to eat color. I may have to pretend I’m a squirrel scavenging for what’s available,
But nourishing my body is a need, and I will make it pleasant, just for today.

I wake up too early, but I’m finding not trying so hard helps.
Just for today, I’m giving in.

And I’ll cry, probably, at some stray thought or when something reminds me of the life I used to have.
I will share heartbreak, be inspired, and draw a measure of strength from the words of others.

It is overwhelming to think of all the fresh, new grief and how many people have experienced what I have, but just for today, I will try to love myself and my new life.

I will forgive myself today. Just a little.
And I will tell myself that I will find something within me and in the world that is worthwhile.

There may be “bigger” things I must do, but no matter what they are, I will focus on these things,

Before I go to bed, I will listen to a guided meditation about a garden and imagine myself there, stepping down five steps – slowly – into the arms of my love.

That’s love. That makes me feel good.

​Just for today, I will light a candle that smells like lotus blossoms.

Jan McDaniel is a writer from the southeastern United States. She creates projects for survivors of traumatic loss, including suicide loss, through her website and blog, A Way for Hope.

A partner of Serenity and frequent guest blogger. Jan’s words always ring with wisdom, compassion, and resilience.