Just being

I don’t plan to share much about my grieving process, except to say that it’s hard and that it comes in waves. I feel this aching sadness that my mom won’t get to see this or that or do this or that…that all the stuff I still want for the future she won’t see/experience…and then I remind myself that she’s in a much better place, her pain is gone, she is happy…and that my sadness at her not experiencing certain earth-bound things is coming from my earth-bound perspective. But since that’s the only perspective I have access to right now, it’s hard to cope, so my emotions go back and forth.

I did a wonderful meditation today from Goddess Leonie, and it was exactly what I needed. Thank you so much, dear soul. You are a gift.

To get through the days I’ve been starting a few creative projects, thinking up others, and being thankful to be laid off so that I have time to deal with things on my own terms. If I had to perform at work right now…no. I can’t even bear to think about it.

I’ve reinstalled Gallery and am slowly uploading pics and organizing and whatnot. That helps a little bit too, although when I start to smile at a pic I feel a wave of guilt. I don’t know why, but I do.

I went looking for some specific words that might capture some of what I’m feeling, and I found these three balms on this page:

I said to my soul, be still, and let the dark come upon you
Which shall be the darkness of God. . . .
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.

— T. S. Eliot

Your grief for what you’ve lost lifts a mirror
up to where you’re bravely working.

Expecting the worst, you look, you look, and instead,
here’s the joyful face you’ve been wanting to see.

Your hand opens and closes and opens and closes.
If it were always a fist or always stretched open,
you would be paralyzed.

Your deepest presence is in every small contracting
and expanding,
the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated
as birdwings.

— Rumi, in The Essential Rumi, translated by Coleman Barks

“We do not recover from the death of a loved one. In fact, we never recover from that death in the same way we recover from an illness or broken limb. It will always be a part of us—always—and to suggest otherwise is unrealistically and harshly to imply that we somehow ‘get over’ the feelings about the event or stop experiencing painful reminiscences of the loved one or the death.

“A much more accurate metaphor is represented in the old Carole King song ‘Tapestry:’

My life has been a tapestry of rich and royal hue
An everlasting vision of the everchanging view
A wondrous woven magic in bits of blue and gold
A tapestry to feel and see, impossible to hold.

“In fact our lives are ‘tapestries,’ and the death of a loved one is a ripping, gaping, bleeding hole in the very midst of that tapestry of our life. How, then, is the tapestry rewoven? It does not, with the mere passage of time, magically pull itself back together. Rather, it is rewoven only with the initiative, energy, and strength of the survivor reaching in and grasping the torn ends of threads, painfully pulling them back and tying them together. And it is rewoven only with those persons around the survivor cutting threads from their own tapestries and bringing them to the survivor, with love and support and caring and tears and strength, helping to further tie the threads and fill in the gaping hole.

“So, eventually, the tapestry is rewoven. But that ‘glitch’ is always there, the roughness of that reweaving is, and always will be, apparent. In fact it may be twenty years from now, as the survivor reviews the tapestry of his or her life, or is in a particular setting, or hears a song on the radio, or remembers a special day of the month, that the rewoven seam is seen and felt again, and the survivor remembers and cries, or feels sad, or is touched by the love and caring expressed by those whose threads are apparent there—and that is perfectly normal. We do not recover from a death, but when we allow others to help, we can reweave our tapestry.”

— Charles Meyer, in Surviving Death

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