Free to Grieve
Grief, not a word or emotion we are taught to be comfortable with. Ever notice how when someone breaks down and cries we are quick with the Kleenex, faster with the platitudes or we change the subject. Anything to mask and normalize that raw emotion, the heavy burden of grief.
My father passed away last night. Quickly and painlessly at the age of 85, daddy went out on his own terms it was a good death, and a good life. No stranger to grief and prepared, I feel strangely hollow, un-moored and adrift. My grief is washing up against me in waves. A tug here and a pull there, then nothing but quiet.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve and no time limits. Each of us must feel this in our own way and our own time. A cyclical process, nothing linear about it. The important thing is to feel it. Not to turn away or stifle our emotions, to really feel and let the grief wash us clean. Too often we have been conditioned to put on a brave front to be strong and get over it, life goes on. And indeed, it does.
It takes strength to grieve, to feel and connect with the raw and tender parts of our hearts.To celebrate the cycle; birth, death, birth…nature knows. New life grows out of the ashes of death, the blossoms peak, fade and die once again. A continual loop a magical cycle. Grief can recognize this and feel it’s beauty.
In our lives we may grieve over many things, loss of life, loss of friendship, marriage, job, community, home, on and on we are given opportunities to grieve. What of loss of a dream? This subtle and deeply personal loss can be one of the most painful as our dreams are uniquely our own. Dreams come with heavy needs and passions. Dreams come from a place only we know. When the loss of a dream comes full circle we can either acknowledge this and feel it, or deny it’s pain create more suffering.
What are you grieving? Like the birth death birth cycle our griefs can loop and be a continuous pattern of gain and loss. Allow yourself the freedom to connect with this truth, your truth, your dreams.
My father, through conditioning and belief systems, did not allow himself to feel his grief. He lost much in his life; his mother when he was nine, his brother when he was twenty, eventually his father and step-mother as well. He prided himself on never crying, never feeling, never grieving. Though he was a great man, brilliant with many gifts, & I loved him dearly he could have lived a different life. A life with less suffering one with more connection had he allowed himself that one simple yet difficult action…the freedom to grieve.