From “Springs of Living Water,” the grief support e-newsletter of Optage Hospice
Welcome to 2023. For those who are caregivers and for those who grieve, the New Year can bring up conflicted emotions. This is often considered a time to look forward with hope. But the surge of optimism that others may be experiencing might seem strange to those of us who are witnessing the slow decline of a loved one or grieving their loss. Sometimes it takes everything we’ve got just to make it through today – let alone think about tomorrow.
The poet Gwen Flowers describes loss as “absorption, adjustment, acceptance.” If you are still trying to absorb significant changes in your life, hope can feel very elusive … perhaps impossible. But even as we experience deep sadness, hope can help us see our struggles against a larger horizon. Hope can bring us a surge of joy and the energy to act, even in the midst of pain.
So even if it feels a little strange at first, try to begin this year with a thought of hope – what do you hope for, right now, within your own circumstances? In the face of all the challenges and the setbacks, what is still possible? Although this seems like a simple exercise, you might be surprised at how powerful it is. A thought of hope can quickly become an act of hope.
No matter what we are facing, time pulls us forward. Hope reminds us that we won’t always be where we are right now, and hope can help us find the way ahead.
Upcoming Grief Groups (Zoom)
Grief Support: Hope for The New Year
Wednesday, January 18, 7-8 PM
We’ll discuss the impact of hope on the grieving brain and body as well as reflect on our personal hopes as we begin 2023.
Grief Explorations (six weeks)
Thursdays, 1-2 PM, Jan. 19-Feb. 23
We’ll explore the impact of grief on the mind, body & spirit and what you can do to help ease the process.
If you are interested in joining a group, contact Chaplain Jenny Schroedel by email at [email protected] or by phone at 651-341-7105.
Optage is the home and community services division of Presbyterian Homes & Services.
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