Wellness Pearls

12 February 2020

No Winter Lasts Forever, No Spring Skips its Turn

I have to let winter be winter.  I recently learned that my cousin ended his own life.  This brought on a wide range of difficult and conflicting feelings all in the same hour: bewilderment, guilt, anger, grief, powerlessness, nostalgia, blame.  I am guessing he was at first reluctant to be here, then decisive–he could not be here.  I imagine a future he could have wanted.  A fierce reminder that I can never know what another person is facing and to always err on the side of kindness and generosity, especially with my attention.  For anyone who has experienced losing somebody to suicide, some very clear thinking from my favorite Irish salve, the late poet John O ’Donohue (excerpts FOR THE FAMILY AND FRIENDS OF A SUICIDE)

May your loss become a sanctuary
Where new presence will dwell
To refine and enrich
The rest of your life
With courage and compassion.

And may your lost loved one
Enter into the beauty of eternal tranquility,
In that place where there is no more sorrow
Or separation or mourning or tears.

From “To Bless the Space Between Us” (a.k.a. “Benedictus”) by John O’Donohue (C) 2007

10 Responses

  1. Courtney Joncas

    So sorry for your loss, Eileen. Your post is so inspiring. Thank you for sharing. I will remember your family in my prayers. May your cousin RIP.

  2. Heidi Wilson

    So sorry for your family’s tragic loss. We just never know what others are facing, even when we think we are close to them. May you find peace.

  3. Kirsten Wiegert

    It saddens me to hear of your family’s loss. May time be kind and strengthen the sweet memories your cousin provided in the creation of you.

  4. Nancy Plemmons

    Hello EIleen,
    So sad about your cousin. Your sharing his story and this poem will help people who face a similar scenario by offering a perspective of hope when it is most needed.
    You are a blessing.


    You’re a bright light in the world, Eileen. Thank you for sharing this, and hope you are well. I just saw a relevant Ted Talk about Grief by Nora McInery.

  6. diane chase,fnp

    sorry for your loss. I agree ,we cannot always know what some one is going through , but kindness is always a good place to start. enjoy your blogs very much. very insightful

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