(Personal news and retreat updates)
May seems to have flown by – but there’s quite a bit more to fit in yet .
I’ve been running a course for a group of ladies at a local church, one morning a week. It has been a combination of a “Living with Loss” supportive event and a “Grief Companion” training course. It’s one of the first times I’ve delivered an event to a “ready-made” group which was different in the sense that everyone already knew each other and there was instant rapport.
I liked this set-up and hope to offer it to more locations. I wasn’t the only one who liked it, because the feedback I received was very encouraging. Of those who filled in the feedback forms, absolutely everyone strongly agreed/agreed that they “enjoyed taking part in this course”, “the course was well-presented”, and they would recommend this training to others.
Excerpts of some of the comments:
Enjoyed the way this was presented, and would certainly recommend to others. It was well worth doing this course.
Feel more confident in speaking to, encouraging/supporting someone else [who is grieving].
I loved the openness and transparency, without anyone being pressured into sharing.
Seeing the journey we have been on for the past 5 weeks, everyone has learnt something and moved forward in coping with grief.
The course gave me lots of new ideas about how I can help others. It also was very relaxed and encouraged people to take part and share. We shared difficult things but also had lots of fun.
I hope and pray that the next event will have as much positive impact – and that’s just 2 days away , at the “House of the Open Door” in a village called “Childswickham” which looks as picturesque as it sounds. We travel there tomorrow and I will post pictures in due course.
This is the first ever “Living with Loss Part 2 – the Journey Continues” retreat, and everyone participating has already been to an earlier event. I’ll write more about it later.
While I’m on the subject of retreats, there is still time to book onto the next “Living with Loss” retreat in the Scottish Borders Town of Hawick. I’ve never been there before and am looking forward to exploring, but most of all, to meeting those who will gather there. Find out more on the retreat page here, or get in touch with me.
It’s all been keeping me very busy through what is actually my most difficult time of year – Catherine’s anniversary was in April, and Pax is at the end of May. A major thread in the Retreats is for those who are grieving to be kind to themselves, to take care of themselves. I try to “practice what I preach” as well, so the week after next we’ll take our annual visit to my favourite places in North Wales, where I’ll walk the Orme at Llandudno and visit Bodnant Gardens. The pictures below are from earlier trips – the walk to St Tudno’s is my yearly pilgrimage, and the visit to the cascade of colours at the Gardens is truly a highlight of my year.