I got up with the sun (and the son).
Unfortunately our eastern sky in Lone Tree CO was SOCKED IN at sunrise.
I like how today’s prompt is called Sunrise Ritual.
Ritual. It can be so comforting.
This morning’s ritual, the first day of Capture Your Grief, is a comfort to me.
I’m remembering several years, now, getting up on October 1st. Some mornings crisp, wearing Kade’s flannel. With intention, getting up in the dark, quietly getting my things, and driving to an expansive place where I could watch the sun crest.
I’ve actually been counting the days to Capture Your Grief this year. I think I crave structured outlet for my grief. It’s so easy to go along with my days and weeks and weekends; months and seasons; work, family, play; and not intentionally attend to my grief. To Kade. Opportunities like this help me drop in to my feelings. My soul. My spirit. My grief. My continuing relationship with my son.
I’ll sip my cafe latte and toast to the damp sunrise. Here’s to an October of capturing my grief.
And my love.
Capture Your grief is an expressive activity created by CarlyMarie, an artist and bereaved mom in Australia. She has a prompt for each day to take a photograph to capture your grief. When she posts her daily photo on Facebook, participants can comment with theirs.
Capture Your Grief website:
CarlyMarie’s Facebook page:
g – grief therapy class
My Grief Therapy class at Regis was an impacting experience. I had heard that the only instructor who taught it, Dr. Annamarie Fidel-Rice, was soulful, depth-oriented, and remarkable. I jumped on taking it as soon as I could because I knew it wasn’t offered every semester.
Dr. Fidel-Rice and the class did not disappoint. It was by far the most expressive, feeling, experiential, and immersive class I took in the program—I guess like grief is. You can read more about the class in this previous post: heworeflannel.com/2017/05/03/one-year-down/.
In learning about providing grief therapy, we were allowed to process our own losses. We created loss timelines, engaged in writing prompts and coloring prompts, chose and reflected on images that spoke to us and our grief, allowing the unconscious to become conscious, and learned and participated in healing ritual.
Though not a picture from ours, we partook in a burning bowl ceremony choosing something no longer serving us. There was power in taking part in rituals in community.
Day 2 instructions:
“Create a new mourning ritual. When you rise in the morning spend a few moments in silence and create space for yourself. Wherever you choose to do this, whether it is at the end of your bed as you wake up or out side with a cup of tea, take a few minutes to ground yourself. You can do this by either sitting on the ground or placing both feet flat on the floor. Take a good posture and close your eyes. Take some slow relaxing breaths in and out. Envision your child’s light burning bright like the sun from your heart. Once you feel calm, awake and present, dedicate your day to living for your child and set an intention for how you want your day be. Write it down and share it with us.”
I usually wake at the latest possible moment, squeezing all the milliseconds I can out of hitting snooze. This morning, though, I got up with my alarm and turned on my bedside lamp. I scooted upright, and opened my journal to the blank page (the one after my entry from the bank of the Arkansas after rafting), and closed my eyes.
I thought of Kade. Then I looked at the picture of him holding Asher on my wall. I sat with him for a quiet moment. If you’re not a bereaved parent this might sound crazy to you (or maybe it doesn’t):
It was nice having a little time with him. I’d been missing him. I need to hang out with him again soon.
My intention for the day came to me in the form of a bracelet I ordered from a site I follow, Hands Free Mama. My bracelet reads,
“Only love today.”
There was my intention.
I found my bracelet, jotted my intention, added a little love note, “captured my grief” (snapped my picture), and felt calm and ready for the day.
Starting my morning slowly, mindfully, and by setting an intention was a brilliant change of pace. I will try to do that for at least the rest of October’s Capture Your Grief, and maybe it will become a habit beyond.