I arrived in Belgium on 9-11-01, a visitor in a foreign country during a tragically tumultuous time of loss and confusion.

Last week, I awoke in Australia to another civilian disaster — the shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines plane — with the same ingredients linking global grief and sorrow. Outcries once again echoed across borders.

The television reports in Australia were somber and as factual as possible. I was overwhelmed by the lack of “finger pointing” and their grieving words. This is a country of adventurers and mavericks. Traveling is in the genes of the Aussies, encouraged by the surrounding seas.

The perspectives from Down Under touched me. The reports did not blaze away with contempt for the hundreds of countrymen lost. They spoke of the Lost Souls. The word soul was repeated. There was solace in that word for me and for the lives terminated so suddenly.

Reporting was compassionate and sensitive. Loss was expressed not only for Aussie countrymen but also for all and for lost dreams. Filtering through this Down Under lens of loss I sensed and experienced a reverence of explorers and deeply connected souls.

Globalization struck a new chord for me that day. It started with the letter “C”. Compassion without borders and communication without brisk judgment.

May we celebrate every day with personal peace while remembering our connection beyond man-made territories.





Susan Reynolds

Susan W. Reynolds developed her innovative system by combining interior redesign principles with grief recovery methods. Susan is a member of the Association of Design Education and a Certified Physical Therapist. Her training in wellness and ergonomics has given her sensitive insights into the needs of people in grief. She is a consultant to hospices on how interior design can help clients feel comfortable and safe. She speaks at bereavement groups to teach her methods to people who have suffered loss. She helps those in grief visualize how small changes in their surroundings can result in big changes in attitude. After her husband died of cancer after a difficult two-year battle, Susan participated in traditional grief groups. She found that a practical approach worked best for her. She uses her blog, "Room for Change", to present her ideas about the role of ergonomics in grief recovery. The book version of her system reflects input from bereavement coordinators and other specialists in the field of death and dying. Her company, Revival Redesign helps people refresh and enliven their personal space using items they already own and love.

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