The Survivor's Hope

Spreading hope and finding resilience through suicide loss

Observe & Surrender

“I’ve learned a lot of myself recently” is usually something I say when I’ve been on the verge of a mental breakdown and somehow come out okay.

But how exactly do I keep “learning”?

 The past few weeks have been very stressful (good and bad) but with the practice of taking on the role of the observer more deeply (the thing I like to ramble on the most in my yoga classes) stressful situations have had less of an effect on me. For example, getting into a car accident last week has taught me how much I am willing to keep going and how resilient I am becoming with the help of this practice. It sounds silly, but after my dad died any car trouble I have has lead to a complete meltdown without him there to answer the phone and be here for me right away.

Feeling of grief, abandonment, loneliness, anxiety are just a few examples of the stuff that comes up. Now, I don’t accept those feelings rather I think, “that’s interesting this little car accident can bring up such deep trauma and old wounds.” The moment you step back and recognize the mind being the mind the uneasy feelings dissolve. I notice, I listen to what the feeling is, then I chose to not give them a starring role in the moment. 

After these steps I surrender. I wait with open arms to see what’s going to happen instead of trying to plan out the next step. With this particular situation I noticed thoughts like “but how am I going to sleep after this? I have to wake up at 4:30.” “I am hosting my first workshop tonight what if I can’t make it? What will I do?” “What if nobody shows up?” Every worry showed me how much more I needed to surrender. And you know what? I didn’t sleep Thursday night. My classes on Friday went well regardless. More people showed up to my first workshop than I expected. It all worked out, imagine that.
A few days after, I am ​sitting in traffic on a one way street with a roundabout for over 30 minutes. A situation that would’ve sent me into an hour long panic attack last year is now just casually annoying.

Don’t get me wrong, the panic starts to come up but then once I recognize it, the emotion loses its power. 

With an accomplished smile and heart filled with grace, the words from Dharma Mittra come to my mind:

You really have to believe in this stuff if you want it to work

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Tell me what you know about night terrors


In the last month I must have started about 50 posts but I am actually going to finish this one without being attached to the idea of it being “perfect”. Words are words. Take this for what it is. Hope it helps someone.

I woke up in the middle of the night in a panic. To be honest, that’s not really anything new. In fact, my heart was racing for the same reason it usually is: uncertainty, guilt, doubt, etc. this time, all centered around one particular event/karmic lesson my life has been playing on repeat for quite some time. To explain further, do you ever recognize this certain thing that always happens to you? Just when you think you have healed yourself it comes back to test you and apparently you fail because you feel back at square one. Maybe it’s just me.


During the panic I remember something I heard over the weekend. Saturday, I had the opportunity to experience kirtan with Bhagavan Das and Sharada Devi (if these names mean nothing to you, it’s not important). Every so often between songs they would share some sort of wisdom. Without really explaining much, Sharada Devi shares something like, “and when you wake up in the middle of the night in fear, GET UP AND PRAY. Pray that instant to be released of the maya  (illusion) and pray to remember the love” It was one of those moments where you know the message is intended for you. If not, unfortunately there are other people with this problem of reoccurring night terrors.

Trying to pray in these difficult moments is hard. You might think, “BUT IT HURTS I CAN’T” but yes, you can. You will keep trying until you can. You are okay.  Everything is okay, always. Sometimes this healing stuff hurts. Surrendering  takes times.

In the morning I found these rose pedals blessed from Saturday night and I instantly felt loved and taken care of.

Trust the process, you are so loved.


& Sleep tight.

Book List for Healing

The Untethered Soul By Michael A. Singer 

One of my all-time favorite reads. Singer guides his readers through self-realization and raising consciousness of your soul. What I’ve really took out of his teachings is how to be friends with that voice in your head that you spend entirely too much time with. I read this book often not because it has changed but because I have changed. In fact, I encourage you to reread many of these books any time they are being called to you.

You Can Heal Your Life By Louise L. Hay

Oh Louise, she’s great. Full of affirmations and love, as always.

Finding Your Way after the Suicide of Someone You Love By David B. Biebel, Suzanne L. Foster

(See below)

The Scattering of All: Tales from Extraordinary Survivors of Suicide Loss By Marlayna Glynn Brown

Something about hearing other people’s struggles with suicide loss helped me cope. This book was extremely comforting even if it became dark at times. Recommend about 4-6 months after loss when your life starts to feel real. Great for releasing and accepting your new life full of healing and hope. You are not alone, in fact you learn you are normal as fuck so hang in there.

The Top Ten Things Dead People Want to Tell You By Mike Dooley

Very interesting. A light learning on death and how it’s not so permanent. 

Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao By Wayne Dyer

Wayne Dyer is probably my favorite person to ever live therefore, I recommend all of his books. This book particularly because Dyer follows Lao-tzu, a God-realized being’s 81 verses of the Tao Te Ching expressing his way of applying the principals to modern life. I have read many versions of the Tao but Dyer’s is simply life-changing. I have this on audio and frequently play it over and over wherever I leave off in times where I could use some serious grounding. I use this book on when I’m anxious on a plane ride, stuck in traffic,  or just in a shitty place. It works. 
I will probably add a part two to this eventually. 
Knowledge is power!💪

My God.

I get asked a lot about my religious beliefs, especially in the yoga community. A lot of people assume I’m Buddhist. Others listen to my music and think I’m Hindu. Some know I go to a Christian Church and are offended by my philosophical teachings and religious curiosity. But the truth is, I identify with all of those. At the same time, none of them.


I think God is always the same. There are different stories and every religion is right in their own way.

There are many different names for the sun, but no matter where you are, it’s still the sun and we all understand that.

I think of God in the same way.

I can chant my Hare Krishnas and I can sing worship songs of Jesus Christ. That is what works for me. I encourage you to find what works for you and what you actually believe in. Just because someone told you that there is a God doesn’t mean you have to believe that. Maybe you don’t believe in God at all. We are all so different and that’s  what makes it beautiful because we all teach each other different ways of thinking and eventually we find what resonates with us.

Who God is to me

To me, God is my best friend.

It seems sad to think about but if you’re anything like me you don’t really have a lot of people you can talk to that know everything about you. Not to mention actually finding someone that will listen to you. Someone that takes you seriously when you need an ear. No offense, but most people will start to listen to your problems but then just interrupt you and talk about themselves. Does that sound familiar? I hope it’s not just me. There is a small amount of people in my life (maybe even, like, three) that I can think of that won’t do that to me. I have to be grateful for the people who don’t listen to me because for that I have found a better relationship with God.

When no one is there you will find God. When you’re looking for love in all the wrong places, God is there. And no I’m not talking about romantic love, I’m talking about selflove and acceptance. No one on earth will give that to you like God does. No one understands what you’ve been through and why you are the way you are like God does. There is no one that will wash away your pain and your grief and your regret like God’s grace will. When people tell you that you have made mistakes God is there to reassure you that you are perfect in every way.

I don’t know about you, but that’s who God is to me.

& God is so, so good. 🙏

Dealing With Drama After Suicide

There will always be people with different opinions and ways of thinking than you. Personally, I’d like to consider myself a very open-minded and easy to talk to person- that’s just what I’ve been told. I can see just about every side to a situation and understand where anyone is coming from even if I don’t agree with it. However, sometimes people in our lives are just wrong and we know they are wrong. Their goal is to hurt others. Why? I honestly have no idea. Maybe it makes them feel powerful or better about their own pain. Maybe seeing you hurt brings them pleasure.

Still two years after my dad shot himself people are still making up nasty rumors (yes, these people are over 50 years old) maybe to mask their pain of their loss. But just because they are hurting doesn’t mean nobody else is too. That’s my dad. This is my family. I hate comparing pain but I wish they would understand for a minute how that feels.

I could act more like my mom. Ignoring these nasty people, knowing confidently my truth so I do not need to act out, but rather just wish them well and move on with my life (bless her heart).

Or, I could act more like my dad. If my dad knew someone he loved was being hurt he would put a stop to it himself. Physically. He was a very scary man. He would tell them they had no business talking about his family in that way. His actions, always out of passion and fear.

So I’m torn. Do I say nothing? Or do I protect my family?

As much as I want to say mean words and come down to their level that’s not me either, sorry dad. I recognize their pain. I know the truth. I know that every moment is a lesson. I watch the battle inside me arise and I know choosing peace is always the answer especially when it’s the hardest. The pain I’ve been through the last two years has only opened my heart and made me more compassionate. Every opportunity against that is just a step backwards.


In these situations it is important to ask ourselves…

Am I unintentionally causes anyone pain?

Could I use my words to bring more light?

How do I deal with what doesn’t resonate with me?






Astonishing Light

It’s in YOU. Spread it.

Something about everything from Hafiz make me feel some type of way.

I encourage you to find a good soild few hours and to get lost in poetry and ancient spiritual teaching.

Comment your favorite find below, I’d love to hear it!

Fighting Forward 

Somewhere along the way someone hurt you and now you feel like you can’t move forward.
When you have been through something tough (like losing someone to suicide) there is no doubt the tragedy is going to try to take over your personality, no matter how long it has been. 

You carry the weight with you. You have that chip on your shoulder as a reminder to stay detached. You want to move forward into love but you are held back by pain and suffering. The pain of a broken heart, although not physical, constantly challenges you to stay alert and steer clear of any chance you could feel that pain again. You might feel forced to stay defensive because you remember how much it hurts to lose someone you love. 

Or, maybe you still try to give your all to something/someone but then when they seem uninterested you pull back and slam the door saying something in your head like, “See!?!? That’s why we DON’T do this!! It’s too risky!”

I wish I could follow this post off with a simple way to fix this problem and how to break free of the weight, but, I’m still there. I’m still learning how to love people again. I’m still learning about trust. I still feel like I’m constantly being denied love and acceptance even though that is not what is happening it’s probably part of that defense mechanism.

From what I understand right now, to get anything you have to give it away first. You have to just jump in and love the innocent people in your life who deserve it despite who hurt you. You have to love yourself first-always. You have to open up and not take everything so personally because the truth is, most people are wounded. So maybe we can be the first to step up.

Maybe today we take a moment to ask ourselves what we really want. If we want love, we work to love ourselves first. Start by saying nice things about YOU. Don’t ever wait to hear those things from someone else. Actually believe those things because they are true. 

Overtime I think that weight will lift when we keep fighting forward. 

When You’re Weird 

I know I’m weird. I’ll be the first to admit it.

As a child, I never played sports or went on trips to Disney or even camp. Instead, my mother took me to photography classes and art walks. I remember watching Bob Ross with my grandmother for our afternoon naps. Although fitting in always seemed exhausting, I never tried to stand out.. That’s just how I was raised, and I loved it and still wouldn’t want it any other way. I admired my artistic family, that’s what I wanted to be but had a hard time finding exactly what my ‘art’ was.

This little girl never changed. In fact, I think I have came back to her more after the attempt at trying to grow up too fast.

I don’t like crowds. I don’t like drugs or drinking anymore. I don’t like working myself to death like I used to. I don’t like being around people for too long.

I like taking time for myself. I don’t really go out with new people. I like reading yoga books and attending every yoga workshop I can afford even if it means paying my bills a few days late.

I know it probably sounds stupid but I have to do those things. It’s very important.


Because yoga has become my art.

Because when it comes down to it, I’m deeply afraid of myself. I’m afraid I will kill myself like my dad did. I’m afraid there’s too much of him in me. I’m afraid of putting myself under so much stress because I don’t ever want to find myself in that space where my father was. I don’t ever want to hurt my loved ones the way he hurt mine. Sometimes I’m afraid because nobody is there because I don’t let them be.

My desire is to do the complete opposite. I want to spend my life finding answers and helping people find hope and light. Because I really think together we can do that.


I finally understand why people spend so much time in their art.

Stick to those things that bring you peace and help you find that light.

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