Wednesday May 7, 2014

Dan called on a customer yesterday, and instead of playing salesman, he found himself playing counselor.  This woman recently lost her husband at too young an age, and she's very early in the grieving process.  Dan allowed her to open up and share her anger and sadness.  She's been surrounded by civilians, so Dan was a welcome relief.

Dan left feeling good about doing something for another.  It's part of who we are now, and it's a good part.  We do "get it" when someone suffers a loss.  We are further down the road now - 28 months of living with the loss of Shannon - and maybe that gives us a little more perspective on the grieving process.

Dan and I talked about how, in those early months, we didn't know if we could ever be happy again.  We couldn't imagine life without Shannon, or how we would carry on and make any sense of this journey.  We were scared about the rest of our lives.

But, I can honestly say, there is much happiness and contentment in our lives now.  The three of us are each busy with our own endeavors, and we enjoy each other's company.  We make a good threesome these days.  

Shannon's spirit is with us, always, but we are gaining perspective and re-establishing our lives with each month that passes.  It's a process that's never over, but there's beauty in that.  We don't ever have to feel like we should be done grieving.  We are at peace with the fact we will grieve the loss of Shannon forever, but it doesn't have to hold us down.  Instead, it inspires us to be better versions of ourselves.

I received a sweet note yesterday from a dear friend.  On the 6th of each month, I send out the Shannon O'Hara Foundation Newsletter.  These words made my day:

"I cannot believe it as we mark another month since Shannon passed away.  I love receiving this newsletter each month.  Makes me smile & take a moment to stop & remember Shannon...big brown eyes, bright smile, mischievous behavior, her grit & determination.  I hope today is wonderful."

It was.