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David Nicol's picture
August 30, 2021
by David Nicol

When Covid swept around the world early last year, Kate and I saw it as the long-awaited trigger event that would mark the start of the great unraveling of the current world system, and the beginning in earnest of our transition to a fundamentally new era. We felt well placed with our work in collective healing to offer support during this transitional period. Indeed, like many others, we felt we had been preparing for such a moment for a long time. Little did we know how personally we would be touched by the force of the crisis. 

As I’ve mentioned previously, I contracted Covid myself in October last year, and developed long-haul symptoms that lasted a good six months. It was a challenging and at times scary descent into chronic illness, something I had never experienced before. As we delved more deeply into the research to help me with my recovery, Kate realized that she too had been dealing with a number of debilitating long-haul symptoms. The illness catalyzed an intensive process of learning for us about health and healing and thankfully we are both doing much better. But during this time Kate’s father was diagnosed with a serious form of lymphoma cancer. And, just as I was coming out of Covid, we discovered that our beloved dog Jackson had also developed cancer. For several months, we tried absolutely everything we could think of to give Jackson a chance to recover, but, so sadly, his health deteriorated and in late June we had to say goodbye. 

Jackson’s passing was an unexpected and exquisitely painful loss that brought us up close to the mystery of death in the most personal way possible. In this long post I’d like to share some reflections on what I’ve been learning on this path of grief. With all the loss so many of us are facing in our crisis-stricken world today, I hope it may be helpful for your own journey of grief too.

Kate and I had twelve beautiful years with Jackson. He was for us just the perfect dog, we loved everything about him. He and I had a particularly special bond. He followed me wherever I went and slept by my...