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Being there for one another the best way we can

Being there for one another the best way we can

“I got you a delicious cake,” said the mole
“Did you?”
“Yes”
“Where is it?”
“I ate it,” said the mole
“Oh”
“But I got you another.”
“Did you? Where is that one?”
“The same thing seems to have happened.” 

-The Boy, the Mole the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy
 

Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to show up for someone even if we might not know what to do.   Or maybe we try to say something and it comes out all wrong.  

Many people are hesitant to join group because it can be scary. 

“What if I say the wrong thing? What if I don’t belong?”  Or even worse, “What if I say something that injures someone?”  

Being in group is about meeting people where they are at.  Everyone starts in a different space, and goes at their own speed.  We aren’t supposed to all be the same. We don’t always say or do the right thing. But somehow we work it out.

I can promise you one thing …we won’t eat your cake!  Give us a call and join us for a group program this spring.

Warm regards,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

The bravest thing you’ve ever said

The bravest thing you’ve ever said

“What is the bravest thing you’ve ever said?” asked the boy.
“Help” said the horse.
“When have you been at your strongest?” Asked the boy
“When I have dared to show my weakness”

  • The Boy, the Mole the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy

 
I used to belief courage was about doing things that involved incredible risk:  Running into burning buildings; putting oneself into the line of fire; more recently caring for those with contagious diseases.  

These are indeed acts of courage.

What I have learned to appreciate though, is a quieter more invisible form of courage.  It’s the force that motivates us to speak when it’s easier to remain silent.  To stand up and be seen when we can blend in or remain invisible.  To ask for help when in many ways it’s less effort to simply carry on.

Asking for help may be one of the hardest and most courageous things we can do.

Warm regards,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Quiet Connections

Quiet Connections

Every Christmas Day I know two things will be true: 

  1. I will likely eat chocolate for breakfast
  2. I’ll spend time connecting with people I love.  

This year, although I’m fairly certain a Toblerone bar will make its way into my stocking, I also know the way I’ll connect with others will look different. With some people, I’ll connect with by phone, others by computer.  

The largest community, though, I’ll hold in my thoughts. 

When people are thinking about us, we often feel it.  Even when we may feel alone, our community is still there.  The connection is simply quieter… but not forgotten.

Know that each and every one of you are in our thoughts.  

Wishing you a Happy Holiday Season and looking forward to connecting in the New Year.

Warm regards,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

Nova Scotia Thoughtful

Nova Scotia Thoughtful

Have I told you recently how proud I am to live in Nova Scotia?  It’s sentiment I know many of us share: everywhere we look, there are flags and signs celebrating the strength and loyalty of Nova Scotians. 

I’d like to add another word to our vocabulary when describing Nova Scotians: Thoughtful.

Last night I was in IKEA.  I wanted to pick up a large shelf unit and had parked my cart on the warehouse floor, wondering how the heck I was going to get the heavy unit onto my cart.  It really was a two person job. A young couple walked towards me, interested in the same unit.  

“Wait a minute,” the young man calls to me, “You’ve got the wrong kind of cart, I’m going to grab you a flat one.”  

Before I knew it he had dashed to the end of the aisle and grabbed me something more suitable.  Together we easily got it loaded.  The next step was loading this monstrosity into my car.  I parked my shopping cart by the trunk, and was walking around to unlock the door when an older couple walked by.

“Don’t try lifting that on your own,” the man called out.  “Let me give you a hand.  No sense you strainin’ yer’ back.”

I hadn’t even had a moment to ask anyone for help and here this fellow was, making sure things went smoothly.  This is the kindness of small towns and close communities.  I drove away with a warm heart and appreciation for the thoughtfulness strangers. There may be a lot of challenging things going on in the world these days, but I, for one, am happy to be living in the Atlantic Bubble, and super proud to be in Nova Scotia.

Warm regards,

Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Executive Director, Landing Strong

A waste of lime

A waste of lime

It’s amazing how two people can hear the same thing but interpret it in entirely different ways.

Joe and I were at the cottage recently, and he shared a line from a country music song he’d heard recently that he found amusing.  The song is by Ingrid Andress, entitled “Waste of Lime”.

“That’s disgusting!” I exclaimed.

“What, no it’s not, it’s funny” Joe protested.

“I don’t understand what’s funny about it” I respond, looking at my husband with a tight feeling in the pit of my stomach.

“Well, she’s singing about the fact that she and a fellow shared tequila, and at the end of the evening, he left her, leaving her feeling that it had all been “Just a waste of lime and a waste of time” Joe explained.

“Oh,” I respond, with a sigh of relief “I thought she was singing about the fact that someone had been killed.. but they weren’t  even worth the lime that had been put over the body”

Joe and I started at each other.

How is it possible that something as simple as lyrics to a song could have such different meanings?

Joe immediately understood the lime reference related to drinking. 

After years working at the federal penitentiary and reading through forensic files, the same ingredients had very different meanings for me.

Different experiences, and different lenses for interpreting the world.

It makes a huge difference doing work with people with shared experiences.  They’ve been there.  They get it.  What may seem dark in one context, is just business as usual in the next.  

Come to a place where you’ll be understood, whatever lens you’re viewing the world through.  We’re offering a number of exciting fall programs. Sign up  now in order to avoid disappointment.  Seats are filling quickly.

Warm regards,

Everybody needs a prickle

Everybody needs a prickle

We all need to have a sense of belonging. Even porcupines need to connect.  Did you know that a group of porcupines is called a prickle?  Even if we don’t look approachable, it doesn’t mean we aren’t looking to connect.

I have a friend Kari MacLeod who walks both her cats and dogs through the forest near her house.  Recently, she has had an unlikely new addition to the walking crew: a porcupine has been welcomed into the ranks. 

This porcupine found its prickle with Kari and her pets.

Sometimes we find belonging in unexpected places.  Even if we are coming out of our comfort zone to create it.  Like porcupines, people who suffer from injury are not always seen as approachable.  There might be fears of getting close.  

It’s only after getting to know porcupines better that we realize their quills are only used as a protective measure.  They might look threatening, but underneath it all, they’re just as loveable as any other creature.  Their quills aren’t designed to keep people away, but to protect them from harm.

Many first time group participants have concerns about fitting in, but our shared experiences and common ground connect us in a way that is stronger than any differences that may exist.  Whether you find your prickle with us or somewhere else, we hope you find strength and support within a community. 

Warm regards,