ritual at the cam store

Embracing change with ritual

I often speak about the value of ritual. Those moments that we take to acknowledge transition.  I have been particularly reflecting on ritual as my family approaches a new era.  

Some context

Let me give you some context … I have 3 adolescent children.  In some form or another, this year each of them is graduating, and all of them are preparing to leave home - to go away to university, to travel, or to pursue careers elsewhere.  There are 18ths, 21sts and farewells abound. It is a wonderful time of new possibilities, anticipation, and excitement, but as with any change, there is also a lot of uncertainty and fear in the unknown. 

As a family we mark moments with ritual

As a family we have always marked moments with ritual and celebration.  When it is someone’s birthday, we go around the dinner table and each of us shares what we love about the birthday person.  When we are together on a Friday night, we light candles and break bread.  Before departing on a big adventure there will be a family dinner.  When there is a significant event in one of our lives we come together to be witness to that person. 

Whilst none of what I am describing sounds that novel, I invite you to reflect on the power of ritual in providing both strength and opening to the new, particularly at times of transition.

Ritual invites strength

In standing still and acknowledging transition we are witness to ourselves and we are witness to other.  In witness there is strength.  

Ritual offers a container

Ritual offers a container for the bigness of our experience where the tears can flow and joyous rupture can be expressed.

Ritual helps us embrace the unknown

The container of ritual helps us embrace the unknown. That magic threshold of the in-between where we can open to so much if we allow it. 

So what holds me back?

I recognise for me, what so often holds me back from stepping forward into the in-between space, is the fear of the unknown. 

However, within the container of ritual, I am able to step forth feeling more grounded and open.

This applies to the big moments of life as well as the small moments of my day.

A lived example

As I sit writing, ribbons of incense aroma gently rise from the embers. With the dawn coming, I lit the incense taking a moment for myself to acknowledge a new day, and subsequently felt inspired to journal. 

I reflect for a moment, that so often the ritual of a lighting candle or some incense helps me ground and open to what is stirring below. 

The writing nearly complete, the last of the ash falls.

As we begin with ritual, we close.

The beautiful scent lingers, and perhaps I wonder, so too will my words?

I see more and more, this ritual of letting go, takes time and has many iterations.

Travel safe, with courage and curiosity my beautiful children.  As I send you off on your respective adventures, know I will be here to receive you when you to choose to return.

Thank you

And thank you my readers for being my witness. The ritual of journaling and your presence here also gives me strength to help me step into my new chapter ... what it is to become my own person once more.

Perhaps consider how you might bring more ritual into your world.

It is through connection we heal. 

Love as always Sarah xx

1 comment

Your writing and insights are beautiful, Sarah. Thank you so much for sharing 🙏


Leave a comment