By Gemini Adams, MNFSH —

It took me a very long time to integrate the loss of my mother. Perhaps this was because she died so prematurely, at just 48 years old. She was still a young person in the eyes of many. As for me, at 21, I was even younger. We had only just learned how to become friends, having battled through the high’s and lows of my teenage years.

Just as we had come to see each other as allies, as women sharing similar challenges and interests, she was snatched away. It wasn’t unexpected. Mom died from cancer and her death was a long, drawn-out affair that took two and a half years, despite the fact that when she was diagnosed, she was given only three months to live.

After the death, the journey through grief was difficult. There were plenty misty days, thunderstorms, and moments when the car slid down the road, revealing a sheer cliff-face which had me frozen in a state of fear. But after a couple of years, the bad weather cleared, blue skies burst through the monotonous gray and there were occasional interludes of sun beams: small, but nonetheless brilliant. Here are a few of the poignant ones:

  • When I realized I had heard the word Mom without my chest being flooded with searing pain and sickness.
  • The first year that I noticed I was actually excited about Christmas, rather than totally depressed.
  • When I was able to talk about Mom as if she were in the room, without fearing I would melt down into a blithering mess.
  • The day I went to Bhakti yoga and the tears didn’t roll down my face for the entire one-and-a-half hours of the class.

Slowly, the void that had replaced the warm place of my loving heart gradually filled, with new experiences, faith that things would improve and that new relationships would arrive, even if none of them could ever replace what I had lost. None of this happened overnight, it took three, four, five, even ten years for some of the coins to drop.

Yet it began when I made a decision. Somewhere along the way, I’d had enough. Grief had come into my life uninvited. Until it showed up, I’d been a happy-go-lucky person. I was sure this negative state didn’t fit my personality profile very well. So, I remember waking up one day and thinking, Enough. This isn’t who I am. I don’t have to feel this way anymore. I’m choosing this and I can make another choice.

Now, by this time, I was pretty good at doing grief.  Prior to losing Mom, I’d also been good at joy, hope, trust, and laughter. So I wrote my mom a note, telling her that it was time for me to remember her with love, but I was in need of a new beginning. I attached the letter to a beautiful red helium balloon, which I took to release at her graveside.

As it floated heavenwards against the clear blue sky, I drifted too, into a new place possibility, infused with healing, hope and happiness.

Gemini Adams is the award-winning grief expert and author of Your Legacy of Love: Realize the Gift in Goodbye.

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Gemini Adams

Gemini Adams

Gemini Adams, E-RYT, C-TREP - is a trauma specialist, yoga teacher and award-winning author who is passionate about unraveling the shadowy “stuff” that sits behind our suffering to bring relief and restore an authentic state of well-being to mind, body, heart soul. In the role of educator, Gemini has mentored and taught classes and workshops to adults, at-risk teens, children, the bereaved, the elderly and special needs groups on a variety of transformative, health and wellbeing topics as well as the creative writing and publishing process. 

Knowing from personal experience how trauma impacts the present moment, causing frustration, disruption, robbing us of inner-peace, health and the ability to “be” who we truly are. Gemini began practicing yoga, meditation and seeking transformative tools in her early 20’s to recover from her own trauma's — school bullying, parent’s divorce, boyfriend rape, substance abuse, and her mother dying from cancer at a young age. A Somatic Trauma Resolution (STR) and advanced TRE® practitioner, she draws on 20 years of trainings and certifications with the Trauma Center Justice Resource Institute, Trauma Prevention, CRUSE Bereavement Care, the Tony Robbins Leadership Academy, the NFSH, the Health Wave Institute and studies with Ray Castellino, Sharon Porter, Dr. Peter Levine, Dr. David Bercelli, Dr. Betty Martin and Dr. Diane Pool Heller. Gemini is a trauma-informed Yoga Alliance registered E-RYT teacher with over 800 hours of yoga study with Sivananda, Sri Dharma Mittra, YogaBugs™ and many of California's leading teachers, including Saul David Raye, Govindas of Bhakti Yoga Shala, Sianna Sherman, Micheline Berry, Shiva Rae Mark Whitwell. 

Combining her passion for changing lives with her love of exploring different cultures, Gemini has facilitated youth, mental health, environmental and social impact projects in Africa, Peru, China, Poland, England and the USA, with The Red Cross, Raleigh International, Personal Overseas Development (POD) The Tony Robbins Foundation and The Temple of the Way of Light. 

She is also the creator of Womb*Sense — a fusion of yoga, somatic experiencing and sensual movement — which she’s taught to hundreds of women across four continents. Held in the safety and solidarity of sisterhood, women are guided to shake out pains of the past, freeing trauma from their bodies and wombs, to essence, open to pleasure and their heart’s desires.

Gemini currently works with the Center for Relational Healing, a trauma and addiction recovery center in Los Angeles, where she also has a private practice offering one-on-one sessions with somatic experiencing and shamanic practice to overcome relational neglect, abuse, sexual assault, incest, bullying, CPTSD, PTSD, low self-esteem, unresolved grief or trauma, depression, anxiety and to integrate journeys with plants or psychedelics. A recipient of the prestigious Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship, she writes for Open to Hope and the Huffington Post and is the author of several bestselling books, including Your Legacy of Love: Realize the Gift in Goodbye and The Facebook Diet, which have been published in multiple languages and featured on The Today Show, the BBC, The Huffington Post, Reuters. Also, her freelance healthy living articles have been published in Medium, Women’s Health, Red, BOOM, Live It Natural, and Yahoo.com. You’ll find her popping in to teach at retreats, festivals, conferences around the world, relaxing at a spa or hot-springs, shopping at a local farmers market, dancing under the moon or creating mischief and magic with family and friends. Gemini was a guest on the radio show “Healing the Grieving Heart,” where she discussed 'Lasting Memories of Our Parents' with hosts Dr. Gloria and Dr. Heidi Horsley. 
Listen to the show at https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/39570/lasting-memories-of-our-parents

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