One gift I took from my Lutheran days in college is an appreciation of spiritual rituals and traditions — that the “outward and visible is a sign and shadow of the inward and spiritual.”
Remembering my baptism – celebrating bellybutton, ‘gotcha’ and recovery birthdays – these are examples of life milestones and anniversaries that I choose to make traditions in my life.
December 21st is also a significant milestone in my life of recovery – in my “second chance” gift to reconnect with my true self and my Higher Power. It’s the date when I hit my spiritual and emotional bottom, reached out to my Higher Power through loved ones in my life, and started my life-long road of recovery.
It is with humility and gratitude that I celebrate, honor, and remember the hope, gratitude, loss, grief and resurrection in this first milestone,
A close friend shared a book with me earlier this year – Praying our Goodbyes: A Spiritual Companion through Life’s Losses and Sorrows. It has been a tremendous source of inspiration and guidance. I will close for now with a short passage from its preface – for those who know the connection I have with butterflies, you’ll appreciate why it struck such a chord with me.
I remembered the necessity of eventually “letting go” and that the journey does not conclude with goodbye but is followed by “hello.” The pattern of growth as of one of “life, death, resurrection” provided both solace and hope…Like the caterpillar, our grieving thoughts and distressed emotions lead us to believe all is ended, but what is happening in the darkness of our grief and desolation of letting go is that our life is slowly being transformed. In the midst of our emptiness and bleakness of heart, God is nurturing and strengthening us for future growth.
May your days continued to be filled with hope and grace.