May your journey through your own grief awaken you to levels of knowing, empathy, and peace that frees your own soul, opens you to love big, and allows you to embrace the beauty, the sweetness, and the unbearable, but glorious, impermanence of it all.
Seane Corn, extract from her article, Grief Transforms Us.
I didn't have too much to do with grief until my mother died, back in 1999. And even then, it was as Seane wrote, describing a conversation she had with her father as he was dying: 'He held me once, not too long before that was physically impossible, and told me I would never again feel so ripped open. “Remember this feeling,” he told me, as I studied the new tumor on his shoulder that I could swear wasn’t there just hours before, “your grief will either consume you or set you free. It won’t feel this way right now because you’re in it,” he said, “but you will come through, you will heal, you will grow and you will be grateful.” I told him to go fuck himself and we laughed hard, until we cried, at the horror of it all and the beauty that we knew we would both one day come to understand. Me, as I struggled to let him go. Him, as he accepted he had no choice but to.”
And I know it is true. When I am 'in it', in whatever the 'loss' is ... I can do anything I have to do. I can give my first ever public speech at my mother's funeral, and I can move countries, and take jobs I never imagined taking.
Being in that state, as your known world falls apart ... it protects you for a while.
This morning, after reading Seane's post, I was compelled to share it on facebook. It felt a little like cutting open a vein but it was important too ... because I am learning so much about grieving out here in the world, about myself and others grieving for things lost.
On facebook, I wrote: My first ever public speech was at my mother's funeral. It was incredibly difficult but an honour too. I was glad to be able to farewell her in that way. However I don't think losing the people we love, to death, is the only thing that we grieve. The longer I spend out in the world, meeting others who have lost relationships, families, homes and future plans, to divorce and relationship break-ups, the more I see that there is a huge need to mourn that loss too.
This loss is the loss of losing the love of, or for, another. It's the loss 'normality' ... of inhabiting a conventional, socially acceptable space in the world, of 'owning' a known place in a community.
Try not to turn your back on those who have lost marriages and relationships. It's another kind of loss, and there is a degree of shame and/or humiliation that, perhaps, makes no sense... whether you stopped loving, or someone stopped loving you.