Seeing the Journey through the eyes of the Way-Shower

Early in my grief journey, I met others who had lost someone to suicide long before. I deliberately focused on a few who seemed to once again be living a life that seemed ‘normal’ for lack of a better word. They had tough days, as we all do. They experienced stress and anxiety, perhaps at higher levels than before their loss, but most of their days were good. They included laughter, friendship, joy. I began to think of these people as Way-Showers. Someone who was finding their way along this path.

I would spend time reading what they had written early in their grief. It was easy to feel the tragedy in their words, the heartbreak was palpable and something I knew very well.

But I continued to read, to follow their journey through the weeks, months, and even years.

What I came to realize very well was that healing didn’t happen on a time schedule. It looked different for each of us. I also realized that quite often healing seemed to be quite subtle as it began to show up in a small chuckle, or appreciation for a hot cup of tea shared with a friend. Becoming aware of this was huge for me as it showed me very clearly that the strong belief I held that healing was absolutely possible was in fact being experienced by so many.

Now, more than 9 years from my loss I do believe that my heart has healed. I often reflect on the writing that I did in those intervening years, particularly the early days. It shows me so very clearly the path that I have walked.

As a Grief Coach, when I work with clients, I encourage them to reflect on how they are feeling now as compared to their earliest days. Journaling is a powerful way of not only expressing ourselves and processing our feelings but it also provides us with a map of our journey. It shows us how far we have come and that makes acknowledging our healing much easier.

This also allows us to show others that healing can and does happen. One day at a time, one step at a time.

Look to those who have gone before, the Way Showers.

Namaste,
Sandy Walden
Master Grief Coach