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Our Founding Story

The Lodge Stories

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“It is profoundly meaningful that in times we would consider the most unimaginable, that we are able to find  nourishment in our tears and a love so deep words cannot describe it. It is here, in this depth that we begin to surrender to the notion that a well lived life must include grief. That sorrow is the seed of passion, of love and of human making."

Sarah Hines, Founder

I met a man one blurry night in Manhattan, and little did I know, he would be the soil in which my passion for grief work was to be planted. He had been rejected by his family for his life choices and was preparing for death without them.  Helping him through his struggle to come to terms with his love for them and in turn his forgiveness while carrying the heavy weight of going through treatments. Coming to terms with his lonely death and grief was heartbreaking and it quickly set me down a path that would eventually lead to where we are today.

 

It was shortly after his death, I completed training in Home Hospice Care. I volunteered in men’s homes for 5 years before the medications became reliable and being gay wasn’t always breaking family ties. Some of the most amazing times I have had in my life have been in the homes of dying. Strange, yes.. but so beautifully honest and raw. It reminds me of just how precious this life is.

I then completed the Children’s Hospice Care Training and crumbled into the heartbrokenness of dying children. It is in these years I layered in a deeper understanding of just how fickle death can be and how difficult it is to face death and grief. I was in awe that in times we would consider the most unimaginable, that we are able to find glimmers of beauty, cracks of light and the nourishment in tears.

 

There is a deep beauty in grief and death,

that we are too ashamed to feel.

To continue down this deepening, I studied the importance of Community while becoming a Death Doula.  This journey, while weaved with the loss of my own loved ones, was solidified by my participation in the Orphan Wisdom School.  This 2 year scholarship took me into the depths of what life requires from us, the importance of grief as a skill and how to honour all that is and what could be.

 

With the accumulation of all of these experiences, I left my executive role at a workplace mental health organization to dedicate myself to the mission of The Lodge.  A place where we can come together to experience the opening of ourselves to the idea that hard things are beautiful, they are empowering and they are truly what roots us in our humanness.  

“No more tame language about wild things.” Dr. Martin Shaw

 

Today, my work focuses helping leaders connect into their nature, find their passion and discover how their passions aligns with the work they do. How do we connect into ourselves and lead from the genius inside us?  How can we find desire and passion when we so long ago left it behind? How can we see passion and purpose come alive in the work we do?  It means I get to spend time helping organizations creating alignment through wise compassion.