Saturday, January 25, 2014

Finding Grace

Sometimes it'll sneak up on you like one of those stealthy Ninjas you see in the movies. Only it isn't a movie. It's your heart. And when it jumps out from the shadows and whacks you over the head, it'll make you wonder how you'd gotten away until now.

I'm talking about Grief.

{Aside: Now, before you get all twisted up, I do know this Blog is about choosing Joy. So, if you'll stay with me here, we'll wind our way there. Don't we always?}

So then...

Say you're toodling along, doing what you do, enjoying your moments with deep appreciation. You've even managed to hang a few photos back on the walls, feeling stronger about the loss of your loved one. A bit of time has passed. You feel you've moved on with as much Grace as can be expected. You might even feel joy on occasion, when thinking about Loved One. Memories bring smiles instead of tears. There are moments when you laugh out loud ....

{Another aside: why do we say "laugh out loud"? Isn't laughter always out loud?}

...when you laugh just thinking about a particular moment you shared. Things are grooving along nicely. Then one day, whilst reading some lovely thing or other, that Ninja jumps out of the shadows and whacks you with his sword. You feel the pain as freshly as if the loss was yesterday. You feel your heart tighten. Your mouth goes dry. The tears start raining down your face uncontrollably. You are one hot mess. Just like that.

It surprises you. You weren't expecting such an upheaval. Not now. Not after all this time. How can it be? How can you be humming along so easily and then have all that rise up so large. Worse, it feels even bigger than you remembered it. Monumental Grief.

Perhaps it will help if you realize that Grief is like that. Grief does not care about time. Or distance. Or your ability to move on. Grief has its own agenda and you cannot sway cajole or trick it into submission. Grief comes as a guide to your Grace. 

If you've ever experienced a moment of true Grace, you know that when it washes over you it really does feel as if the Hand of God (or whatever you like to call It) has lifted you up into Its loving arms and wrapped you in that vast expanse of Love. You feel as if you'd never really been alive til that moment. You feel...More Than Love. 

But how can we know this feeling if we do not experience its opposites. I use the plural there because Grief is not the only "opposite". In any case, if we have not felt some semblance of Pain, how would we know the absolute Joy of Grace? 

We could not. We are Humans being human. We are subject to all manner of folly. Grief is among them. And were we not so deeply in Love with those Beings whose passing rips our hearts apart, we would not know the Joy of their presence before they leave us. That is the purpose of Grief. To remind us that we have boundless capacity for Love.

And Good.

And Grace.

And so....I wish for you the courage to bear your Grief....until you get to the Grace that will find Its way to you. Always.

{See? I told you we'd come back 'round.}

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