My Hope Has Grown


Many thanks to Angela Hardy for allowing me to use her painting of Hope in this blog. Her work is amazing and she has captured not only the look but the heart.

Painting courtesy of Angela Hardy Fine Art

My heart is full of things to say but it almost stops beating at the thought that my kind, sweet, lovely, granddaughter is now 18. It seems like just a few days ago that I held her for the first time in the Vancouver airport or spent her first birthday on the beach in Campbell River gathering starfish and wrapping her in 20 foot strands of seaweed.  Her third birthday was a special occasion too.  Many special people gathered together and she had a lovely yellow princess dress.

Every moment I have had to watch this lovely child grow has been a gift.  I treasure every hug, every smile and laugh we have shared.  They have been too few.

When she was little and my own life was in a shambles I told people I had a little “Hope”.  Now my “Hope” has grown

I started a tradition when Hope was tiny.  Each Christmas she got a gold charm which was representative of the things she was interested in that year.  Yesterday I was able to give her the bracelet to put them on.  I pray it will be a reminder of the love I have for her as she moves through life and that it may be a cherished heirloom.

What can a Grandmother possibly say to a young woman on the verge of the adult journey.  Yes I am proud of the person she is but I am not eager to let go of the little girl she has been.  I suppose I fear for her as I have for my own children but I think as a grandparent I have a little more perspective. I know she will go into all sorts of dark and bright places, come through safe and stronger for the journey.

What words can I give her:

  •  Be yourself and never let that get lost in someone else
  • Be true to your values but always be willing to entertain the values of others being careful not to dismiss them
  • take advice – hold what works close to your heart and the leave the rest on a shelf in case you need it another day
  • always honour,respect and love the people who love you most – your family – the time goes too quickly and suddenly they are gone
  • seek truth and live truth
  • help others every chance you get.  It won’t bring you riches but it will make you rich
  • take time for sunsets, bugs and lightning storms – there is beauty everywhere so remember every day to look for it
  • follow your heart
  • travel, travel, travel and then travel some more.
  • live every day as if it is your last and plan as if you will live forever
  • learn from your mistakes but don’t beat yourself up about them
  • learn from other people’s mistakes too but be gentle with them
  • be brave but never be afraid to cry
  • you have a choice with each of life’s difficulties – they can make you better or bitter.  Chose better
  • most of all chose life

I love you as I love my life.  Blessings for the journey and thank you for being my “Hope” these 18 years.


About Peggy Guiler

You just never know what show up on my blog. As the name implies it is about the stuff of life just like Spilt Milk. Everyday events spark thought and contemplation. Special events in the community, the country or the world may strike a cord and get me talking. Sometimes it's about people in my life or circumstances, sometimes about my garden, sometimes about a book or a political issue. Always it's about something I am passionate about. In my business, River of Hope Enterprises (, I work as an "Certified Coach" (International Coach Federation), a trainer, consultant and speaker. and as a spiritual director. I also drive a school bus to keep the wolf from the door while I build my business. I love the kids on the bus (most of the time). My family is grown and I have three grandkids who thrill my heart but I don't get to see any of them very often. Circumstances of life have made "family" difficult. My son died by suicide at age 16 in 2000 and the strain on our family relationships since has been huge. Mental health is a field where I worked for almost 22 years and where I still do some consulting and training. That combined with my own battle with depression and my son's death weave together to form some of my greatest soap box items: suicide intervention, suicide bereavement and peer support in mental health are right on the top of my list. Social justice is an underlying passion. Keeping the wolf from the door as a single parent was full-time work and my career path as a journalists was augmented with cleaning contracts, cooking, retail clerk, and bartending. I have known hard work and am grateful for the experience and perspective it has given me. A firmly grounded faith and a passion for learning has now taken me toward a new field as a Spiritual Director and I am soon adding to that a license to marry people. As I move toward retirement I am very aware that I have to keep working so I chose to do things which will meet my modest financial needs and also my love of supporting people in their life journey. Woven into all of this is my love of writing. Trained as a Journalist, and having worked in the field as a freelance news writer for many years, I have a great love for writing. This blog is a new beginning for me. As I hone my skills and begin to form a daily discipline of writing I hope it will lead to more writing in the future.
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