Grieving can feel like trying to paddle upstream in life…
We have covered the issue of dealing with grief before, in these posts: A river of tears for children lost, the inevitability of tears and the reality of grieving for a child with complex medical needs and there is no doubt that we will also cover this topic in future posts as the issue of grief is a constant one for those that have lost a child to drowning or for those that are dealing with the issues of disability following a brain injury after a near drowning or other causes.
I recenty came across some beautiful words on grief by Roshi Joan Halifax, a buddhist teacher who works extensively with the dying process and thought they provide a poignant opportunity to reflect on the process of grief.
“The sorrow of great and small losses is a river that runs in the underground of all of our lives. When it breaks to the surface, we might feel as though only ‘I’ know this pain. Yet grief is a universal experience.
Grief can call us into an experience of raw immediacy that is often devastating. Grieving, we can learn that suffering is not transformed by someone telling us how to do it. We have to do the work ourselves. And that means letting go of what we think we know. When we move through the terrible transformation of the elements of loss and grief, we may discover the truth of the impermanence of everything in our life, and of this very life itself. This is one of the most profound discoveries to be made…….. .
In this way grief and sorrow may teach us gratitude for what we have been given, even the gift of suffering. From her we learn to swim in the stream of universal sorrow. And in that stream, we may even find joy…..
To deny grief is to rob ourselves of the heavy stones that eventually will be the ballast for the two great accumulations of wisdom and compassion.”
and I thought I would leave you with these words that I previously shared in response to a comment on an earlier post…
“Though we have a say in how long and how painfully we suffer after a loss, pain is inevitable in life. To grieve the loss of someone wonderful means to have been honored enough to know them”.