Do you read the obituaries? I do. I didn’t use to, but since I have moved to our small community, I have a deeper sense of connection to those around me. I’m surprised by how often I recognize the names or families listed. Living in a small town, I’m more aware of the trials and tribulations of others in my community. When I pass the fruit and vegetable section at Sobey’s, I expect to run into an old friend who I would often see there, only to be reminded he is no longer with us. When I see fundraising notes and coin jars on the counters of local stores, I’m more inclined to donate knowing that I likely have an indirect connection to the face I see on the bottle. When our first responders pass by areas on the highways that mark the sites of accidents, they too are reminded of losses. Having grown up in downtown Toronto, I wasn’t used to that degree of connection.
I received a letter from my father last week, and for the first time noted a shakiness in his writing that reminds me of his passing years. I pray that those who reside on his busy Toronto street will keep an eye out for him, as I know we look out for each. Together we celebrate, grieve, struggle and grow. Growth, recovery and healing lies in the heart beat of our communities. Strength lies in connection.
In appreciation of each and every one of you who helps to make us strong,
Belinda Seagram, Ph.D., R. Psych.
Founder, Landing Strong