Sink Into Grief
Weekly Reading Topic for May 9, 2020:
Well, good morning, love! I just opened a Reading for you, my newsletter subscribers and here’s what I heard in answer to the following:
What do my readers most need to hear this weekend? What is the most important message to send to my beloved readers?
The answer was: “sink into grief.”
What follows is your weekly reading, dear one.
Weekly Reading │ Sink Into Grief
Q: What do we need to know about “sink into grief?”
A: The Indigo Girls start one of their songs with this lyric:
The Mississippi’s mighty, but it starts in Minnesota
At a place that you can walk across with five steps down
And I guess that’s how you started, like a pinprick to my heart
But at this point you rush right through me and I start to drown
This weekend we are being asked to allow our hearts to be pinpricked, to allow that pinprick to start a trickle, which turns into a flood.
So we can drown.
It’s time to release the immense grief caused by so many things, so many things.
For some of us, it’s the shut-in feeling that is driving us mad.
For others, it’s the remembrances of times we’ve been hurt.
For others, it’s the fear of what’s still to come.
There is death, and cancer, and injury, and illness, and broken ankles and sprained thumbs and nightmares and children with fevers.
We are overwhelmed, so many of us, right now, with Grief That Seems to Have No End.
Because it’s mighty, like the Mississippi.
And we’re feeling like we’re drowning in it.
Or maybe worse: we’re feeling like we have to keep it inside, keep it still and stuck in our head, in our bodies.
If we let it out, what will it be? That pinprick, it will lead to a spring, a place that you can walk across in just five steps — but later it will turn into a great moving river that boats and barges ply, that trees try to gnarl at the sea opening, but nothing keeps that river from flowing. If you are caught in Minnesota, it’s currents will bring you all the way down to the Gulf, and deposit you in the ancient forest that lines its seabed.
And it will feel like a drowning, like a death.
Because feeling great grief? It IS a death. It is a death of the old life, the one that you have lost already, but think you can get back if you Just. Hold. Your. Grief. Inside.
But that’s not the way grief works.
If anger is wind, and joy is fire, then grief is water. You cannot contain water and hope to enjoy it.
Water stuck in one place for too long turns stagnant, mossy green. It starts to smell as bacteria and micro-entities take up residence.
Healthy water is free-flowing. It tumbles about, and surges. It trickles.
And so it is with grief. Keep yourself from grieving for too long, and friend, darling one, you will stagnate. You will stink like a mudhole in high summer.
That is cesspool life.
So. Sit in a quiet place this weekend, and listen to the water, whatever water is near. And allow it to pinprick your heart.
Feel the quiet gush of the first spring, and sit and allow the water to widen, amass itself into a river. Allow it to move your body, feel itself moving through you, rush right through you, until it becomes a mighty river, a thing that moves on its own with its own rules, its own rhythms, its own timing.
I know, it can feel so terrible, to give control to something else, even to your own grief, to your own body as it sheds its grief, to your own pinprick, your own five steps down, your own Mississippi.
But it also feels kind of good, too. It feels luxurious, almost, in a way, to really grieve.
Because here’s what happens when we grieve, and grieve fully: we remove the stagnation. We rid ourselves of the silent, still pools of resentment, and anger, too. All that gunk that was silting up our bodies and minds, all that stuck emotion, flows out with the grief water, leaving us feeling empty.
Yes, it’s a kind of death. But not grieving is the same as dying. It’s just not dying WELL.
And once we have grieved, and rested, empty, on the bottom of the Gulf’s great floor, staring up through the layers of blue at the sparkling lights above, we can recover our strength.
And once strong enough to surface again, we will rise, face up and floating. Floating. Floating, rising, until our face breaks the water and we flutter our eyes and gasp at the precious air, and realize that we have not died at all, that in fact, we are fully alive.
Grieving our grief, whatever grief we have to grieve, moves us from Old to New. The phoenix uses fire to restore itself to new life. But grief uses water.
So grieve, and allow the river to drown you. It will not actually kill you.
And waken to your new life, your new day. We promise, it will seem cleaner, more orderly, and more manageable.
And your lungs will be able to open fully, take in more oxygen.
It’s a beautiful trip, once you’ve made it. The kind that you never forget, the kind you tell your children about. The classic hero’s journey: to start down the river and let it take you where you are going anyway, eventually: to your destiny.
Remember to relax. The water knows the way, so much better than we do.
Much Love to You,
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