Monday, February 20, 2017

Self Compassion Letter

I have been challenged by a good friend and my fabulous counselor to write a letter of self compassion. Here is the result. I think it's a great idea for any who are deeply suffering.

Jared, what happened to you last summer is one of the greatest tragedies that can happen to anyone. On the day that was supposed to be the happiest of your life you lost your best friend and soulmate in a freak tragedy. After nearly 12 years in an extraordinary relationship full of connection, adventure, joy and profound love you finally were getting your “ducks in a row” doing all the things that you were always told were the path to happiness and joy. You and Shar bought a house and were finally starting a family after much disappointment and difficulty. Now you lost your dream girl, your favorite job ever, your beautiful new house that Sharry made a home and your entire planned out future. That is shitty, unfair and should never happen to anyone let alone to a couple that was so deeply connected, in love and one. I cannot imagine a worst thing to happen to anyone outside of acts of violence.

The last 250 days have been incredibly difficult. You are grieving deeply and mourning your profound loss. It will get better, never completely and that is probably a good thing but the tidal waves will continue to lessen in intensity over time until over months and years they are lapping at your feet with gentle memories that bring a smile with the tears. You have JJ a living literal piece of Sharry. He can be very difficult and exhausting but then the next moment he melts your heart. You are the most important person in his life and he is yours. He is your anchor and your salvation. Love him and savor him with your whole soul. As he grows you will see parts of Sharry shine out and you will be amazed and feel her presence about him and you. You have amazing family in the Deckers and Buhanans that are mourning with you and for you and will do all that they can to help you. Help them as well, especially Shar’s family. Show them how grateful you are to be one of them. You have amazing unexpected friends who are full of compassion, wisdom, insight and love. Be grateful for these people in your life. Jared choose to believe the heavens are with you. Your Heavenly Father and Mother and their angels abide with you. They love you and suffer with you. Turn to them for guidance and strength and you will find it. Sharry is one of those angels and she misses you deeply but knows you are doing the best you can as a single daddy with her beautiful baby. She wants you to find joy, love and happiness after your time of grieving is past. She is by your side supporting you and cheering you on.

Jared you are a kind, good hearted, compassionate and good person. You are strong, you can do this you are doing it. You are accomplishing much good in the world as a counselor and other pursuits. Love deeply. Love JJ, your family, your students, your friends, Sharry and yourself. You will be OK again. Life may never be as joyful and carefree as it once was but it you will know joy and you will know love on a more wise and mature level. Grief and this profound suffering are a receipt from loving so deeply. Always remember that life can be both so incredibly difficult and unfair but also so beautiful, wondrous and magical. You have lived the extreme ups and downs that life has to offer. Use your experience as a tool to savor the good, and to be a force for love and compassion in all that you do. Jared I love you, JJ loves you and Shar loves you forever. May peace and light be in your life as much as possible.

JJ first time in the pool, he was nervous at first but then loved it!

In Shar's journal, love it and I am definitely embracing my pain


  1. Amazing Jared. I am inspired every time I read your posts. I think if our eyes could be unveiled for just a moment, we would be overwhelmed with the number of heavenly angels that surround us. Always.

  2. Jared, you don't really know me but Shar and I had many mutual friends through school. I don't have any memories with her but I have felt connected to your story and have followed your blog from day 1. I delivered my baby, stillborn, on June 7 of last year and she is buried just a little walk from Sharry. I always stop by Sharry's grave when I visit my daughter. Watching you grieve in such a public way has been a gift to me. I know my baby and the love of your life are furiously doing amazing things. This letter is beautiful, if you believe even half of it you're doing all the right things. I'm sending love to you and yours. -Aubrey

  3. Hi Jared

    I just heard your story on Strangers. I am really sorry for your loss and I can't express how upset I feel for you and your family. I just want you to know that you are so strong and I am thinking of you and JJ.

  4. What a powerful exercise. I would like to do it myself. Thank you for the idea!
    I'm continually impressed by Sharry's amazing journal-keeping. What a gift she left behind for you, JJ, and future posterity that will be cherished with wonder at awe at her inner (and outer) beauty forever! Thank you for the post.