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And This Is How Our World Will Change

Illustration of woman and bunnies under umbrella

Weathering the Storm by Kim Ferreira

Those who have deeply suffered know the only way to attain authentic and lasting contentment is to turn our hearts outward in service to those who are suffering. Here are two stories…

On Being with Grief When I want to be with my grief, I hike barefoot into the mountains, usually alone and in silence. I found this practice in 2007 when I was hiking up Brewer Trail near my home in Sedona, Arizona. I’d had a stressful week and felt on edge, my mind discursive. The day before, I’d been in contact with eight families whose children had died. The grief moved through my body—it was palpable—and I felt my own sense of despair for the agony I knew they suffered: an agony for which there was no cure, no verse, no healing I could perform. I knew I needed to get into nature. The magic of the natural world has always awed me. But on this day, the superficial distractions of my mind taking me away from my own potent feelings of shared grief were powerful enough to disconnect me from my emotions. Disconnected, I no longer felt angst about the too many grieving families I’d met the day before, but I also missed every bird’s song. I missed the clouds and the rising sun. I missed the manzanita and the little daisy growing between the spines of the saguaro. It was as if I wasn’t even …

Adapted from Bearing the Unbearable: Love, Loss, and the Heartbreaking Path of Grief, by Joanne Cacciatore, PhD. Published in June by Wisdom Publications.

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