2019 meant facing a full year without Dad. Experiencing grief, day by day has felt like layers of myself being stripped away. There have been times when I’ve been totally despondent over everything that death represents.
Yet, it has been said, grief can lead to transformation; from darkness will come light. I believe this is true. This year, blog by blog, I have willingly embraced my inner voice and creativity, and worked purposefully to reach out, to look up, and out to the world. An alternative from drowning in the empty space Dad left behind, or dwelling on stolen ‘still-to-come’ moments I thought my children and I would experience.
This year I have delved into phenomenological and hermeneutic inquiry, as a philosophy and research method to frame my doctoral work. Phenomenology is a form of qualitative research that focuses on the study of an individual’s lived experiences within the world. It offers rich and unique insight into the activities and perceptions of individuals. Understanding the meaning of experience calls on special reflective efforts, which in itself challenges one’s own biases and assumptions. The process so far has also helped me pull towards the light, addressing some of my grief, and furthermore, taught me about the importance of ‘being present’.
So I wish you all, this Christmas period, a very specific wish; to be surrounded by people who care about you. And that you are able to let go, at least for awhile, thoughts of the past or expectations for the future, and breathe in the ‘present moment’, acknowledging the preciousness of life.
Thank you for listening and supporting this year. This has been as much a personal journey toward self-discovery as an exploration of new pedagogic or professional practices to support the Future of Education, Work and Sustainability.
Image: Luna Davidson