On October 23, 2009, I wrote a post called the gift of grief:
Seven months since she spun out of her solar orbit and left my life. Well, appeared to leave my life.
What a cruel lie it is to believe that those we love have gone; what an ignorant denial of Life’s infinity of guises and disguises; what a limiting perspective on the vastness of Life’s Play.
She is missed, yes. But I find that if I simply allow ‘missingness’ to be its unadorned energetic self and ignore the siren-call of memory’s stories, she is there, in that movement of energy. Missingness holds the blessing of mutual gratitude – a two-way appreciation of love known and cherished.
Who would want to miss such a blessing? Who would want to “move on from it”? Who would want to heal it, transform it, transmute or transcend it?
Who would want to deny the gift of grief’s solidarity, the diamond sharp sorrow shared with the mother whose child disappeared a decade ago at the school bus stop, the father whose son has just been shot dead practicing maneuvers for a dubious war in a distant land, the lover whose beloved has passed away before she was ready?
Grief is a great gift. I love the way it keeps my heart soft. I love the way I see it in your eyes, in the eyes of all ‘I’s walking this Earth. It is a hallmark of the unclouded Light of human-being-ness.
Please don’t tell me to get over it.
April 3, 2016 – an update.
Only one word to change: “months”, to years.
Seven years since she spun out of her solar orbit and left my life. Well, appeared to leave my life…
I still slip – delightedly – beneath the still surface to “the secret water, cold and clear”. I still marvel that these eyes spill tears of gratitude. Love blesses me with grief. I make no movement away, rather, I turn to meet it, gladly.
Grief is – for me – a shower of Grace.
The Well of Grief
Those who will not slip beneath
the still surface on the well of grief
turning downward through its black water
to the place we cannot breathe
will never know the source from which we drink,
the secret water, cold and clear,
nor find in the darkness glimmering
the small round coins
thrown by those who wished for something else.
Where Many Rivers Meet
©2007 Many Rivers Press
The original post was inspired by an email exchange with Vicki Woodyard shortly after my mother’s death and the beginning of this blog. Thank you dear Vicki.
Image by Smith Eliot