Grief and the Wisdom of Our Bodies

How Can We Truly Open Up and Accept Grief?

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Grief is not usually an emotion that gets much of our attention, even when it’s begging for it. Grief isn’t one to be invited to the party, but rather stuffed, even choked down with a strong drink or the pop of a pill.

Grief is a paradox emotion, being both scorned and vital. It has few opportunities to show its true power and capacity to those it meets. It has a dangerous reputation to be avoided at all costs, and yet it bears gifts that so often remain unopened. 

Humans are a species that loves, that bonds and attaches to other beings. We live, play and survive together. We are a species of connection, relationships, and kinship. We thrive in social communities, friendships, camaraderie, and alliances. 

Our bodies hold the capacity to see, to hear, to taste to smell and touch, so when a loved one dies, or we experience a huge life loss, those imprints remain with us. Their memory can immediately conjure up the weight of their embrace, their laughter, their smell, or their voice.  Our bodies remember and they hold the residue that grief is trying to mourn.

Our bodies know what to do if we just get our rational logical thinking brain to quiet down.  

Overthinking is paralyzing our natural release valve of grief. Our overthinking, rationalizing thoughts of “why are am I crying” or “ I don’t need to cry,”  admonish our feelings of despair.

Our brains have evolved to both think and to feel, and we place a higher value and importance on the thinking, logical capabilities of our brains than our emotional feeling. This is stunting our emotional growth – we all need to feel the feels, however uncomfortable they are. Humans are so uncomfortable being uncomfortable. 

Grief is the ultimate emotion that levels the playing field for everyone, but it’s a playing field that we have socially constructed, created our own rules for and promptly started to believe our game as truth. 

Grief shouldn’t be relegated to the margins of admissions, cloaked in secrecy and shame. Maybe just maybe when we start to allow, welcome and release our grief, we just maybe will be able to reduce the amount of libations we consume and the distractions we permit all in the pursuit of not feeling. 

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