Friday, January 12, 2007

a posting for the blog

My first experience of the Haven was a few weeks ago - attending the course 'Anger, Boundaries and Safety' guided by Joann and her team.  Though weak from everything she had come through, Joann made the trip from WA through challenging weather conditions.  From a newcomer's eyes, her spirit seemed to me indomitable, so determined, so passionate about her work.  I felt privileged to be in her presence.  And it was a presence I will remember ... so real, so honest ('straight' as she would say), to the point, full of insight, shining with wisdom.  I did not have the good fortune of a personal conversation with her.  But I felt a deep and warm connection with her when she winked at me a couple of times during the weekend.  The winks were a spontaneous response of hers to moments when I came forward from my deeper, more authentic self.  It's funny how such a simple act done at the perfect moment can feel so good.  My heart brimmed with gratitude at the end of this program.  And in gently embracing her fragile frame I said, "Thank you, Joann ... I feel so much freer and lighter." 
Throughout the days of the course, Joann remarked that she had been close to death while in intensive care ... but that a memory of something unfinished seemed to pull her back.  So she concluded there must be something more for her to do.  After I completed the course, I thought (selfishly) there was at least one reason from my perspective: 'I think she came back for me.'  And how I would have loved to be in her presence again.  And perhaps I am.  And perhaps we all are.
Her spirit lives on in her dear family whom she lovingly talked about through stories, as ways to teach us lessons of life.  And she lives in all of you connected with Haven who knew her so well.  And also in those of us privileged enough to have been in her company - albeit even for a short time.  Blessed journey, Joann.  And 'thank you.'
Maureen Wild
Sooke, BC


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