We are sorry to hear that Trish Grainge, who touched the lives of many at The Haven, through her program The Journey to the Well, at Reflections, and in countless other ways, passed away on May 16. Here, Susan Clarke remembers her.
I remember meeting Trish Grainge for the first time twenty-some years ago. I watched this very elegant woman waltzing around the exterior of The Haven Lodge with a long broom (or something of that kind), sweeping away cobwebs. She had a style that was oddly unique, genuine and a touch distant.
The next time I met Trish was at the start of The Journey to the Well, part of The Phase I program at the time. We began with games and improv. We laughed and shared some memories of our childhood. The ease of the first night quickly shifted to becoming characters traveling on a long journey, first meeting at the fireside. Trish was the Fire Keeper, Sara, the guide to The Well. For the next couple days we dove deeply into our stories. I became The Dancer, the one who had no words. Each time I struggled to find a way through, I was gracefully guided by the simple, direct words of the Fire Keeper. I did not believe in myself at that moment, yet her confidence and complete commitment to my ability to find my way was a beckon so strong I journeyed. That journey has stayed with me through the years.
I had other wonderful moments of learning and connecting with Trish. I found her inspiring and deeply committed to her journey.
I was sad to hear Trish took her journey home last week. I hadn’t known she was so ill. Though I had not been in touch for a while, I did feel joyful when I heard she had friends singing and lighting the way for her passing. I was reminded of how many people she guided to The Well or through various journeys over the years. It seemed right that she had people there to assist her.
Once, before a performance, I was wavering and not ready to take the stage. I was in tears. Trish was directing the New Year’s event again at The Haven and saw my collapse. She walked over and simply said, “You’re up. Take those feelings and put them into your piece. This is not the time to falter.” I believe it may have been one of my best performances! I still use the line whenever I doubt I can go on.
I have no doubt there are many sharing stories of their travels with Trish. She offered a number of deeply transformative programs both at The Haven and in Vancouver. She bought her own unique vibration to whatever work she was doing, even sweeping cobwebs! She had a way of guiding people to deep places and supporting them without enabling or over-directing.
I will miss you, Trish. May your journey home or to wherever you go now be one that is as bright as the light you have been for so many here!!