Monday, March 24, 2014

On *Not Getting Over It*

**The therapist asked me to write about myself.  That didn't quite work out, but this came out.

The thing about grief is that it is always with you, right there below the surface. It is always brewing, always bubbling, waiting to blow like Old Faithful or to percolate up like the La Brea tar pits.
We, the grieving, alternately try to hold it in, push it down, run away, shut it down or give in to it. I don't think we always make these choices willingly or consciously. So our minds are prey for the wandering thought, the triggering utterance or sight, or the simple memory. The thoughts we want to conjure are also prey for the grief - swallowed along with our ability to concentrate - in the black hole of our loss.

I believe when others want us to get over it, they bring both compassion and selfishness. Our grief hurts them because they love us and because it triggers them. For who has not lost someone close? 

I am sure there are all kinds of other issues intertwined - guilt, remorse, fear, insecurity. You name it and grief probably amplifies it.

I am hopeful that with practice, compassion and skillfulness we can come to cope with grief in such a way that it does not control us forever.

I am hopeful that we can learn to confront the moments with the understanding that they will pass. That we will learn that facing the grief doesn't mean falling into the abyss. That someday the memories trigger the flip side of all those issues: innocence, gratitude, safety, confidence, joy and acceptance.

Moon over ABQ from Sandias, October 2013

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