Sunday, October 27, 2013
View of Camelback mountain during my morning walk on the retreat grounds today...
Well, another week, another couple of business trips for Ang and me.
I just got home tonight from working on the Grief and Loss Retreat in Phoenix, and Ang leaves for Philly at 5 am. She gets back on Halloween in the Afternoon, then heads back out next week for Minneapolis. Then, later in the month, I travel back to Jacksonville for the annual American Music Therapy Association conference to teach, reconnect, and serve as regional President-Elect (read: meetings meetings meetings! hahaha) That same week, Ang has to travel back to Minneapolis again.
Thank God for Grandmas!
The grief retreat was WONDERFUL. 20 participants, and FOUR of them were men! That's almost a record percentage... usually we have between 0 and 2 men. And... the four men all did GREAT work. It was great to watch as the men were all in their 60's and 70's, and men of that generation are traditionally and generally conditioned not to get in touch with their tender emotions, or share/show them publicly. There were so many great quotes and slides shared... I wanted to come back slingin' quotes for y'all!
The biggest theme of the weekend was that grief is so subjective and personal. Even two people grieving the same person will grieve differently because their style plus their relationship to the loved one is unique. I heard a lot of participants having trouble with siblings or adult children wanting them to do grief according to the sibling or child's preference, not the participants. Further, it was amazing how many people were getting really inappropriate "professional advice" from family members regarding the need to go on medication because it had 'been too long' for them to still be upset.
It was a relief for the participants to hear from each other the crazy things that well-meaning friends and family were heaping on them. We joked that we're going to make a book compiled from all the retreats called "The Stupid Things People Say..."
Man, do we do grief poorly in our culture!
Why do you think that is?
Enjoy some scenes from our local pumpkin patch!