Flowers From Felix
Flowers from Felix is a giant community flower garden at Purewa Cemetery. It began as a guerilla planting exercise to help with grief around losing my son Felix. As the flowers began to die I packaged up the seeds and gave them away to anyone who wanted to plant a flower garden.
I have sent flower seeds to bereaved mothers as far as Niagara Falls in Canada and Sussex in England as well as Lower Hutt and Henderson Valley. Watching the flowers grow and die and reseed and grow again has helped me with my own grief journey and I want to make that experience available to anyone who wants to grow flowers.
As the garden grew donations of plants and seeds and coffee arrived and many people have joined me to create a place of beauty.
Together we have brought life to the cemetery.
If you would like to join us in this creative experience please register to volunteer. If you have spare plants or seeds that you would like us to grow we have a donate page or just bring them along. We also have workshops for those who would like to know more about growing and harvesting therapeutic plants.
There is something for everyone, it is a no pressure environment. You are welcome to come if you can, bring what you have and do what you want to do. There are jobs like weeding, collecting seeds, making signs, replanting, watering. It is also a place where we laugh and talk about many things as we work and then we stop for coffee (or tea) and carry on for a bit if we want.
It’s important to remember that profound grief is trauma, and we will all at some point in our lives experience the loss of someone close to us. This trauma will likely never go away and will sometimes rise up and render us incapable of anything.
It can be helpful to have strategies and there are resources that are known to help. Stories of survival helped me to find a way forward and so I told my story in the hope that it would help other parents who have also had to face the unbearable truth of the loss of a child:
More podcasts like this can be found at: https://ataloss.co.nz/
Grief Counselling has been a huge help to me. It took a few goes to find the right one and I was lucky to find Bronwyn Alleyne at https://yourpath.co.nz/.
The Grief Centre is a wonderful place to find out how to do this journey: http://www.griefcentre.org.nz/
But if you need help urgently please please pick up the phone
1737 Call or text 1737 for support from a trained counsellor, available 24hrs a day, 7 days a week
Lifeline 0800 543 354 or (09) 522 2999
Suicide Prevention Helpline 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO)
Youthline 0800 376 633
Samaritans 0800 726 666
Alcohol Drug Helpline 0800 787 797
Depression Helpine 0800 111 757