Storm Warning

Storm Warning

Have you ever watched a storm approach? In the distance you can see the dark black clouds, heavy in the sky. They look scary but they are far enough away so you don’t worry about it because you are still in the warmth of the sun.

Or have you ever seen an eclipse? So bright one minute and completely dark the next?

Christmas was my eclipse, my storm. I could feel it coming but despite the warnings it still hit with full force. It wrapped its hands around my throat and it plunged me into the cold, heavy darkness and no amount of tears could get me out. I didn’t have the strength to travel five hours to visit family…the stress and anxiety weighed me down so I was unable to breathe…the pressure to pretend became too overwhelming…hating the feeling of not being able to give yet being forced to receive

The enormous guilt and shame of wanting the days to be over when I know of families who due to illness, are counting the days, moments and memories with their loved ones. My logical self seemingly having no control over my emotions. My light being shadowed by darkness.

Through that darkness came blessings…

Weeping in my kitchen, unable to keep the tears from escaping my eyes, the sobs from my throat…with my head resting on my Mother’s chest, like I did when I was a little girl…the nurturing of a Mother to a daughter

Being welcomed into my sister’s home with open arms and concern. There were no judgments, just COMPASSION, KINDNESS, GENEROSITY and CARE.

Numerous texts, emails and messages of love, kindness, support and ultimately, unbeknownst to the senders, STRENGTH.

Making the decision to JOG 14k on Christmas instead of Boxing Day.

Lacing up my runners, filling up my water bottle and stepping out into the fresh air…the first real, deep breaths in a few days…

Immediately feeling the shift as I JOGGED, one step after the other, feet on pavement…my sister riding her bike beside me…a simple conversation begins…

“I’m so glad you made the decision to come for Christmas. If you didn’t I would have drove over and got you.”

The amount of love, care and concern in that statement resonating with each step pounding into the pavement, and into my heart…the LOVE of a sister

The storm lifted with each kilometer I JOGGED, bringing me back to myself and back to my family…the eclipse passed…hope was renewed, my perspective came into focus and I felt normal again. It’s the best way I can describe it…

JOGGING opened me up to receive the love and care I was being given.

If you suffer during this time, try jogging, hiking, cycling, rowing, dancing or boxing to increase your heart rate and release those endorphins. Find something that resonates with you and DO IT. It’s the only thing that I’ve found that snaps me out of the darkness within a few days. My mistake was perhaps not JOGGING far enough when I first saw the storm approaching…

If you are suffering, I know what it feels like, but I also know there can be a way through it too…

With a smile, compassion and love,



  1. [...] During a time of year that is meant to express LOVE and JOY, money can cause stress and anxiety. This year, I was determined not to experience the dark days of last year. [...]

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