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Bereavement Circles - Restorative Communication Journal

As a circle facilitator, holding space in a bereavement circle to accompany individuals experiencing the grieving process is an honor. I am enlightened through the sharing of stories as it assists me in gaining insight to my personal bereavement process. Growth and healing happens when reflecting with others who actively listen and empathize while suspending judgement. Navigation through the emotional roller coaster of grief is a difficult journey, and becoming lost in the confusion of emotional triggers is a natural part of the painful process . I lost my mother to dementia, lost my relationship with my identical twin and am grieving the death of my step-mother of 35 years, all in a time-span of a year and a half. Redefining myself without these relationships in my life takes time and patience...

Holding intentional space to grieve for the loss of a loved one is different for every individual. Grief is non-linear- it is a journey for all to endure without expectation of the length of time it takes to adjust, embrace and accept the loss. A constant in the grieving process is to expect the unexpected... from feeling numbness to the unexpected shedding of tears to unrelenting anger, regret, fear and/or feeling buried and stuck in what is seemingly an endless cycle of emotional reactivity. Finding the support group to feel safe with and to express in confidence is a gift for all who participate in the bereavement circle - and this is where the healing begins. The importance of sharing stories in a circle - with an invitation to cry- lessens the burden of anyone going through it alone.

I am honored to authentically share, be heard, as well as assist people's grieving process as facilitator for the 7 week Bereavement Programs hosted by Lanark County Home Support (

"There is sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but power. they speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief. of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love."- Washington Irving

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