A lot of running happens in therapy.
Running in circles, from the past, away from emotional turmoil. Deflecting away from the hard stuff, the pain, the grief that we all encounter at some point in our journeys. Somewhere along the way, some emotions began to embody the big, bad monster that lurked under our beds as children. Something we more subconsciously than not pull the metaphorical sheets over our heads in feeble attempts to cower from.
Perhaps we are so fond of running because we hate the ending of most everything that is “good”. The conclusion of a relationship, the closing of a life chapter, the death of a loved one. Unless the ending is on our terms based on our clocks, we want nothing to do with it. Even the ending of a TV series or the conclusion of a good book can send pings of longing and hints of sadness dancing delicately down our spines. A witty commercial once termed this experience falling into a “show-hole” and I still giggle at the accuracy.
I wish I could convince others (and myself) that running from “the end” is only going to leave us exhausted, lost, and with no sense of satisfaction.
Grief is apart of the human condition. I feel like someone left this out of the “How to be Human” handbook. It’s the balance that is necessary for a full life. Just as joy and the full extent of enjoyable emotion is inherently ours to experience, grief is just as required. We forget to acknowledge the beauty of grief and the purpose of this heartbreaking sensation. Perhaps this is due to the breath being knock from our lungs and the punch in the gut that follows.
Can anyone guess why grief is a side effect of humanness?
Grief exists because love ensues.
Personally, I think the most courageous act a person can do is to love deeply following the experience of grief. We begin our lives with innocence enveloping love. Innocence serving as a protective barrier away from the existence of conclusions. Love only means connection, security, snuggles, and togetherness. As we grow, the harshness of reality chips away at this barrier, some quicker than others. However, there is typically enough innocence left over for our “first loves”. I believe we can all envision a memory of either experiencing or witnessing a “first break-up”. The dramatics of it may make you cringe, so sorry if it did.
I’d like to fill in the blank in your “How to be Human” handbook.
Grief will come, and the wave of its entirety will knock you senseless. For a moment, or perhaps a block of time, you may not know what is up or down. The sensation of emptiness and longing will leave you gasping for air. You may clutch at your sides in a futile attempt to hold your broken heart together.
Grief will come because love ensues. This the beauty in the chaos. This is the rainbow after the storm. What a privilege it is to love deeply and to be apart of a story that exceeds our wildest dreams. I wish we could have a say over the conclusions that we care most about, but these conclusions are simply not meant for us. The extent of our power as humans only reaches so far.
Let yourself feel it. Let yourself cry. Allow yourself to crumble amongst those whom you cherish. Validate your gamut of emotions that will wax and wane, for these are yours and they are meaningful.
“For what is grief but love persevering.”