A different view

“Is this window seat taken?”

Due to distressing airline experiences early in my singing career, I developed an ambivalent relationship with flying at 550 mph 40,000 ft. above planet earth. I loved it and hated it. Flight allowed me to share the truth of God’s love with people literally around the world. Yet many days I boarded the plane declaring, “Lord, I wouldn’t do this for anyone but YOU.” Strictly an act of obedience and riddled with fear.

This month on my flight to AZ to attend training on the importance of funerals and ceremony, I sat by the window enjoying a unique view from high above. Then, just like that, it was gone. All of it. My view changed instantly to white fluffy clouds stretching endlessly across the sky.

Frequently peeking out the window hoping for something besides cotton balls, I told myself, “Dana, all is well down below. Even if you can’t see the earth, it is still there.” That solid layer of clouds surfaced a familiar unease and disorientation; that feeling of being trapped in the fog of grief unable to see a way out. February is a tender month for me as 19 years ago I learned the little life inside me had died. His little heart had stopped beating. The suffocating layer of fog consumed me as I waited for the inevitable miscarriage (four weeks later).

I entered a darkness where I felt ambivalent towards God. I wanted to run to God and away from him at the same time as my questions of “WHY?” hit the ceiling and fell back down unanswered. Shrouded in gray, day after day I had to remind myself that all would be well – even though I could not see the pathway out.

During the flight last week, the clouds parted for a brief moment revealing beautiful snow capped mountains. It took my breath away! Similarly, my journey of grief sometimes offers a break in the clouds revealing perspective and beauty I never anticipated. A different view.

Perhaps like a pilot trusting his instruments when he cannot see, with faith and experience I can be a gentle guide for others along their circuitous path of grief and loss, helping them trust in the midst of the fog that one day the clouds will part offering a different view and hope that all will be well.

Feb 21-24 I was honored to speak about grief and mourning to hurting parents of children dealing with mental health challenges, trapped in addictions, or who have chosen unwise paths. These parents experience many layers of loss in their relationships, hopes, future dreams, finances, etc. Many shared with me how helpful it was to have language for what they were experiencing in grief, and to have more healthy ways to mourn those losses vs. numbing or killing their hearts.

It is difficult to mourn someone who is still alive. It is hard to know the balance of dependent faith, and accepting and dealing with reality each day. These brave souls truly walk by faith moment by moment.

Grateful to offer help and hope. The sunset returning to Indianapolis was a beautiful reminder of all that God watches over every day that I so often miss from my limited view at ground level.

Prayer Requests:

Wisdom as I get involved with the Wellness Coalition of Westfield (my local community).

Actors needed for the newest diversity video our Innovation Lab team is producing. Also wisdom for those of us working on curriculum for the video series.

Strengthening of Partnerships  A few non-profit organizations here in Indy are starting to inquire about me providing some ongoing training with their staff about grief. Trusting God with each step.  Hope-Rises.com

Thank you for your prayers & partnership!