One of my phenomenal mentors passed away this week from an unexpected illness. This is a tragic loss for the naturopathic community and the world. Josh Berry with his kind heart brought warm smiles to his patients, friends, colleagues and family. It is hard to comprehend how such a powerful healer could be taken away from us so early. He was 37 years old. I thought I was handling it fine until I had a moment to be still and reflect on my feelings. I was sitting on the plane and decided to write my blog about the importance of expressing your feelings to your loved ones while they are here so you have no regrets when they go. Sharing your feeling with your loved ones, both the happy and sad feeling, is cleansing and healing for your body and your soul. It is a perfect lesson that I learned from Josh. I feel confident that he knew how much I loved and respected him because I told him ever time we got a chance to speak or correspond. So as I sat on the plane with my thoughts about the years I knew “Cute Dr Berry” (which was our nickname for him at school) I smiled and said a quiet thank you. I thanked him for his generosity, wise words, and supportive way of being as he taught me about the art of natural medicine. I thanked him for the laughs in the office, calming me when I called frantically about a business matter or teaching me about how to use nature to heal myself. Lost in my thoughts I burst into uncontrollable sobs and waves of sadness. I just let them come so I clear them and start the healing process of just remembering the memories without the sadness. I cried until I fell asleep and when I woke I was tired but calmer and more at peace.
I am complete, sad but complete with our friendship. Loss is never easy but if you have been true and honest about your friends and loved ones it helps in your healing process. Grief can give way to loving memories over time that can act as a healing anchor mentally, emotional and physically when you need them in the future. My lesson to you is to make sure that the people in your life know how you feel about them; close friends and family or distant ones.