Nature and Grief
As we prepare to launch RecuperAcres in the upcoming months, I sit back and reflect on what brought us here today. I found a Ted Talk by Caroline Arnold that really hit home for me. In her Ted Talk Get Back to Nature for Good Mental Health, she mentions the foundations in her interests were around grief after the loss of a few family members in her mid-twenties. She went on a trip in which she was immersed in nature for days. During the presentation, she becomes emotional when talking about it. I found myself getting a bit choked up with her, as that was also the same way that Ecotherapy made its way into my life.
“The hardest times teach us our most important lessons,” is a quote I often think of when I think of the foundation of RecuperAcres. When my father passed unexpectedly, he had been my mother's primary caregiver while she battled Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease. I had seen how positive and productive he remained while care giving for her, in comparison to many other caregivers who really seemed to struggle, especially with mental health and self care when devoting so much energy and time to their loved one. One element that I knew was a big part of my dad's life was how much he immersed himself in the outdoors as he owned and operated the farm that RecuperAcres will be located on, and worked outdoors for the state of MN. At that point I decided if there were any lessons I was going to take away from him in all this, it was going to be this one.
And I'm glad I did it. Even with the loneliness that comes with losing loved ones, I never felt alone in nature. Nooshin Razani mentions this in her Ted Talk Prescribing Nature for Health. We found an effective and healthy way to cope with the compound grief situation we were subject to. Nature is forever our classroom when life gets hard.