Grief and Gratitude

seminar, personal developmentTwenty-five years ago, my husband and I attended a five-day personal development seminar. It came highly recommended but we hadn’t been given any specific information and weren’t sure what to expect.

I saw several banners on the walls. One said If Better is Possible, Is Good, Good Enough. It caught my interest because I thought my life was pretty good but knew there was room to make it better.

To say the seminar changed our lives sounds cliché, but it’s the truth. I came away happier and with the confidence to believe in myself. Our family became stronger and my marriage reached a depth I never could have imagined before. I learned firsthand that better was possible.

Over the years we witnessed countless others, including friends and family, benefit from the program. Volunteer roles allowed me to make a small difference in someone else’s life. I was stretched and challenged and learned I could do much more than I realized. Deep friendships were formed with those I served with and for.

Last week it was announced that this amazing program would not be able to continue. The global pandemic had imposed restrictions that couldn’t be overcome.

Feelings of grief and gratitude intermingle. We were not just participants or volunteers in a program, we had become family. Many are scattered across the country and we will no longer come together on a regular basis. I don’t know if, or when, I will again see these people I’ve come to care for. This is where the grief comes in.

I’ve heard the saying, Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened. With that in mind, I look back in gratitude for the Choices program. It truly was the adventure of a lifetime. I am a better person because I took what I learned there and applied it to my life. The training will forever live in my heart.

I am a confident and valuable woman, gently leading and making a difference by sharing from my heart.