When the unexpected makes you grateful.

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Yesterday I read the Eulogy at my Nan’s funeral.  I felt privileged to be asked, as not only my mum but my aunt and three uncles had agreed that they would like me to do it.  I had no hesitation in saying yes, I know it has been very hard for my mum losing her mum and to be supportive by carrying something emotive and difficult, the hardest goodbye was my way of being there.

A funeral means different things to different people, we all have our own way of saying goodbye, and despite preparation and countless readings and re-readings of this Eulogy (I think my husband could recite it in his sleep) when I was sitting there yesterday waiting for my part in the service I was overcome with nerves, so much so that I had a moment thinking I couldn’t do it.  My thoughts weren’t about me; they were about others, what if I let them down?  What if I didn’t read it well and didn’t do a good job of it?  My husband, who knows me inside out knew that this was my ‘wobble’, we all have them when we are doing something which is immensely challenging and scary but equally very fulfilling, and the squeeze of his hand in reassurance was what I needed to get me up there and standing in front of my family.

Did my voice wobble at the beginning when I read the first part and had to get a hold on my emotions before continuing? Yes.  Did my leg shake uncontrollably throughout?  Yes it did, thank goodness for a pulpit to give me some support.  Despite that I read it, with my heart and my soul and I know I connected with those who needed to hear it, and will have taken from it what was important. I was, without doubt immensely proud of myself that I had done something that was so important, especially as it meant so much to the people sitting in front of me.  When my aunt and uncles thanked me and said that I thought I had done a good job I tried really hard not to be dismissive, disparaging of myself, I took their compliments and know that I had represented my family in a really positive way, at a really difficult time.  I also realised that in the end, the courage it took for me to face something difficult meant I was being myself, I was helping myself by facing those fears, and the reward was indescribable.  I said a fitting and beautiful goodbye to my Nan whilst supporting others to do that too.

When I work with women who are trying to do their best for everyone else, and forgetting about themselves, my job as I see it is to give them the space to find their own happiness and fulfilment first, before looking around them to find out what else needs fixing for everyone else.  Yes, I made the decision to read my Nans eulogy for my family, but I also did it for me too.  My purpose is to overcome my own anxieties, so I can be there for others so that they can overcome theirs, and when you are anxious about getting pregnant again and it has a significant impact on everyday life, I know I can hold that space for you. So, I will leave you with this thought.

What one thing have you done today that makes you feel grateful and positive for the life you have.  It can be the expected, or the unexpected, as was mine when I felt good about something on a sad and momentous day.  What step can you take to overcome those anxious overwhelming thoughts and give you pride in yourself and who you are?

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