Always Make Space For Grief
Updated: Apr 13, 2022
Trying to make space for grief in a society that makes you feel broken and too much for loving your people so profoundly when they have died is why we have souls screaming from their insides.
People live with relentless grief, which is, by design, to keep the status quo as is. The dominant culture is rooted in the suppression of emotions; sit with that. The dominant culture is rooted in oppression which keeps people in their trauma and grief. The counter-culture is demanding a grief illiterate society. The counter-culture is asking us to look at our systems that are rooted in oppression. I am asking us to do better. I am asking myself that same thing. If you are good with what is, I urge you to listen and really listen to others without interjecting your opinion of their experience that isn’t yours.
Our society has been seduced by platitudes that say, “suck it up,” “get back out there,” “don’t share your pain; that’s weak,” “everything happens for a reason,” “It was God’s plan.” And other apathetic “support” that does not help people heal.
I promise that being dismissive while witnessing people’s pain, being the one who reaches for easy platitudes or to makes it about yourself, will keep you further from what we all desire as humans; to be connected, intimate, real, and empathetic to each other.
Listen to people on their death beds if you don’t understand what I am talking about, take in their regrets.
Grief comes out sideways if swept under the carpet. Watch how untended grief can rip families apart. Watch the dynamics unfold when we don’t allow each other to feel what’s on our heart or what has broken it.
Growing our tolerance to witness hearts break and allow it to be what it is, that is the medicine. We witness a shift in someone’s body language when acknowledging their grief instead of offering solutions to their pain. You don’t live in someone else’s body; you don’t know their pain. What may work for you does not mean it works for someone else. Show up humble. Show up as a student.
Become aware enough to know what it brings up for you when witnessing someone else in this kind of pain — your own fears and hangups around death and grief.
Let’s teach people how to hold a broken hearts so that they can mend.
Let’s teach people that living within the pain won’t swallow you whole.
Let’s recognize that this broken society is swallowing some people whole and does something about it.
The timeframe is different for all of us. How we deal with it is different for all of us.
Some never get out of the dark, but I promise it doesn’t change by pretending it’s not there. Let yourself grieve fully so that you can move forward with meaning, understanding, and with love.
My grief is a ceremony. Each day, a ritual arises to honour my grief and love that I carry for those who have died and those no longer in my life. A new part of myself revealed and tended to each brave step into the painful yet freeing space.
I meet my grief with curiosity these days. My dad is dead, and his ashes are in a ring I wear each day.
Every inch of my body is trying to make sense of this shattering, and I am here, to be in it. To witness the shifts, the messy parts of myself, to forgive myself and others who don’t know how to hold this.