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November/December 2016 Newsletter

Where do you find your Hallelujah?

In the midst of one of the most stressful political seasons I’ve ever witnessed in the U.S., we lost one of North America’s greatest gifts to the arts: Leonard Cohen.

He died on November 7th, the day before our presidential election.

I will miss his musical genius, his poetry and his music. His famous song “Hallelujah” is always on the tip of my tongue. I’ve been known to sing it just about anywhere. And for almost anyone.

I’m grateful he gave it to all of us to continue sharing it with each other. Because the idea of finding our hallelujah, our gratitude, feels especially meaningful now.

Leonard Cohen, 1988 01.jpg
Leonard Cohen
Image by GorupdebesanezOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

This is a time of year gratitude runs deep in me, even beyond the cultural focus. It’s a feeling that lies below the waterline of the externally imposed “shoulds” of the holidays.

Many good things have occurred over the years in this autumn season, birthdays and Thanksgiving being at the top of the list.

Yet it has also been a time of great sadness. Some of my hardest moments, major losses of loved ones, have also arrived in unexpected ways around this same time.

That’s why gratitude is so complex for me. I suspect it may be for you as well.

I find that when I don’t expect it to bounce out of me all shiny and clean at just the appropriate moment (usually dictated by someone else), I feel it more frequently.

It comes in waves and ripples and sometimes brings me to tears. I can be in the darkest of places and suddenly it opens my heart.

How does gratitude — your Hallelujah — show up for you?

Do you welcome it?

Or can you befriend it if it’s been a stranger to you?  

You may want to start by acknowledging what you do have, no matter how big or small. And then take it from there.

For me, that sounds something like this …

The sun came up today and it is beautiful.

My children were recently all here under my roof again. My sweet mom was here as well.

We love each other. And I am going to sing today — and every day for a while — to celebrate Leonard Cohen’s life …

And the gift of every Hallelujah.

And, Enjoy…

Suzanne Scurlock-Durana's Signature