wings and things

The retreat: 3

on September 24, 2017

It was the three counselling + guided meditation sessions with Karen that most helped me to take a hesitant step forward. In the first session, I explained that I felt trapped behind the bars separating my life with Anthony from my life without Anthony; in the second session, I had become curious about the future but was also wishing that I could have had one last conversation with Anthony. Karen suggested writing him a letter in the journal I’d been given on arrival. I did this and brought the letter to my last session, read it out to Karen, and cried.

One of the things that struck me about this exercise was that it was so different from my writing to, and about, Anthony on my blog for so many years; the public speaking Ming and I had done recently; the death notice for the newspaper; and even my notes for the eulogy. This time, I was writing something intensely personal just to Anthony and it is comforting to know I can do this any time. Yes, I read it to Karen but she was like a sort of conduit between the grieving me and the curious me and, once I closed my journal, I felt safe in the knowledge that I had written something very private – just between Ants and me. I am very grateful to Karen for her compassion to me, and her wisdom, and how comfortable she made me feel during these self-revealing sessions.

So this is my last post (for the time being!) about the retreat but I have also written a  recommendation here:

I was so incapacitated by grief when I arrived at the retreat but I came home stronger, wiser and filled with gratitude and, yes, curiosity. On my drive home I got a real sense of Anthony laughing kindly at my antics, and wanting me to be okay.

I’m okay.

20 responses to “The retreat: 3

  1. Anonymous says:

    You are so much more than OK, as a person and a role model. Grasping with both your hands this opportunity to begin your journey into your new life, new label, (widow), to join yet another new and gigantic group of women who have gone this way ahead of you. I too, am curious to see the adventure ahead. Lovely daughter. Total woman.

  2. Val Boyko says:

    You are okay and beautiful Julie 💛
    Thank you for sharing the noursishment and renewa of your retreat.

  3. susanpoozan says:

    So pleased to read that your few days at the Retreat gave you so much help. I hope you continue to make progress.

  4. so pleased to read this Julie and glad you are okay. it will be a while before healing is complete but I suppose you could think of it as a wound closing up but then the healing continues. God bless you

  5. Tiny says:

    Dear Julie, I have been absent from blogging, particularly reading since July when I lost both my father and my husband (in his early 60s) to a massive heart attack within 2 weeks. I so see myself in what you wrote. Hugs

  6. Judy says:

    Reading about your retreat is captivating and very touching, Julie. I felt teary imagining how desolate you were when you arrived. You have a long road ahead, but you are a warrior. I am here for you. I hope you know you can write to me anytime. I really care about you even though I am far away.

  7. This retreat sounds like a true gift. I want you to be okay too Julie.

  8. tootlepedal says:

    I am glad that you have found some help.

  9. I am so pleased that the retreat in in fact help you at such a terrible time

  10. Okay! Okay is good.. Love love c

  11. arlene says:

    Glad to know how you are after Anthony’s death. You are doing well. Take care Julie !

  12. That feeling that you had driving home…. I believe perhaps is the very beginning of the healing process… take care Julie… Diane ❤

  13. what a wonderful place it sounds, how did you find it Jules?

  14. Sounds wonderful. I’m so pleased you are feeling stronger. Hang on to that feeling.

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