By Karen Bradley
Dancing in the Sky 2017, a vigil for a community’s losses to suicide and a celebration of the lives of those lost, took place on Sunday, September 10, 2017 at the rink in Musquodoboit Harbour. At least 50 community members joined the Eastern Shore Mental Health Association, MLA Kevin Murphy, and family members who had lost a loved one. Music, readings, and a candlelight gathering followed the talks. Four young men from the band Foggy Road played a number of evocative and poignant songs in memory of friends they have lost.
Bev Cadham, whose loss of her son Shay prompted the gathering, said, “This was a very important event for me and the other families. It means a great deal for us to share the need to understand the pain our young people feel at times. As a community, we can unite together and work on intervention and prevention.”
The vigil highlighted the very real concerns of communities all along the Eastern Shore for the young people who struggle with mental illness, addiction, joblessness, and loss of hope. Recognizing that we have a heartbreaking problem in our community is a first step in addressing it and a number of concerned community folks are doing so.
Conversations will continue through the Eastern Shore Mental Health Association’s and Old School’s grief and bereavement group that is meeting on Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30 until Wednesday December 6th. For those who wish to know more about the grief and bereavement work, to request or develop other support groups, or who are in need of a conversation, please contact the Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/245721602063/) or Anita Rose: firstname.lastname@example.org. Coming together makes it easier to face theses difficult challenges in our families and communities, and support the well being of everyone in our community.