Updated: Jul 30, 2022
The Path to Growth Through Grief
Grief is inescapable in life, and at some point, we all face a loss that feels like a bottomless cavern we will never climb out of. But what if your grief became an opportunity for personal growth? What if I told you that you could climb out of the cavern and then learn to fly?
In Candi Wuhrman's new book, Moxie, she uses the skills and techniques she has learned as a Board Certified Chaplain to navigate her way through personal loss—the loss of her mom.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Candi this month and get to know her better. Candi was born in Mississippi and is the third daughter in her family. After moving between states, Candi's parents separated.
"I guess it is a big piece of my story. My parents divorced when I was nine. That was devastating for me. Everything changed. It was such a marker, yet I couldn’t wrap my head around it. I was very disconnected. I didn’t understand it all, I was so young," Candi explained.
It wasn't until later that Candi realized how big an impact her parents' separation would have on her life. While discussing these harder topics, Candi did mention how she use to connect with her father as a child.
"My dad was a hospital administrator. I talk about my dad being a hospital administrator because that was my playground. That is where I connected to my dad. We use to walk the halls in the hospital. I see where I have gotten a lot of my connection from that."
Candi's professional life as a chaplain started uniquely. After her first marriage, Candi joined the military. She served in the Oklahoma National Guard and was introduced to chaplaincy there.
"I was introduced to a chaplain there who helped me get what I needed spiritually. He was there to help me find my way. I was early in recovery. That chaplain helped me to get to a meeting and a synagogue. I only learned later how impactful that was."
While going through recovery, Candi says she developed a spiritual consciousness. This guided her to start the long process of becoming a chaplain. It began with a lot of interning and studying but led to an impressive list of accomplishments. Candi has a Master's Degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. She has attended seminary at the Academy for Jewish Religion in California and is now a Board Certified Chaplain.
"I have done work in hospice, which is near and dear to my heart. Hospital work is also near and dear. And I have worked in the prison system as well as in the community. Now, I am in private practice. I love it because it always connects me to and is a reminder that we are all on a spiritual journey."
Candi has not stopped learning or finding ways to help others. Her new book, Moxie, started with a desire to have a guide, or example, of the spiritual journey. She wanted a book that discussed the spiritual transformation one might experience through grief. And she was able to transform herself while writing the book.
"When I was writing the book, I ended up addressing grief from 50 years before when my parents divorced. And the knowledge that my mom, this is after my mom died, would be there as I wrote this, as I was called to write this. The connection was still there and deepening the love and knowing that she always thought I had moxie but finding it on my own. It was transformative for me and moxie was one of my mom’s favorite words. It was who she was, it was what she saw in me."
When I asked Candi what she wanted people to take away from her book she said, "I hope they take away that every grief experience is different because every relationship is different and it doesn’t have to be one way and that it’s a big journey with big emotions and it’s all okay. Even though I have worked in this life for so long surrounded by death, dying, grief, and lots of trauma, I have also discovered this place in it that is profoundly rich and transformative, beautiful and painful, and it’s where I thrive."
Candi's new book, Moxie, will release in 2023. If you are interested in learning more about Candi Wuhrman or her work as a Chaplain, visit her website, sacredworkwithcandi.com, or follow her on social media.
Stay tuned for more interviews, announcements, and events regarding Candi and her book!
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Breanna Bartels is a creative discoverer exploring all her new interests in life. Along with being an avid book lover, she is a photographer and videographer with her own company, Candid Mirth. In the spaces between art and work, she is venturing into writing. She prefers a used book to a new one and has fanatical plans to own a used bookstore one day. When she isn't home attempting some new venture, she enjoys camping and hiking with her husband, Danny, and their two dogs. Reach out to her for creative opportunities or to discuss a good book! You can find her many projects here.