I didn’t want to stay here for an entire week. For the first four days I felt ill at ease, restless, and counting the days until I could be at home, sleeping in my own bed. “Why did I agree to stay for an entire week? What was I thinking!” I don’t remember the last time I felt so restless. Usually, it’s very easy to give myself to a situation and practice Presence, but this week has been difficult. It wasn’t until last night though, did I realize that I was grieving and when I did, the restlessness fell away and peace was there to catch me.

The restaurant was only a half-mile away, so we decided to walk. Brooke has been staying at the dorm this week, so it was a treat to see her. On the way to dinner, she talked about all the wonderful things that were happening. She was exhausted from a day of exploration, connections with peers, creating musical collaborations, meeting boys, and setting boundaries for herself. She’s given herself wholly to the experiment of living in this new space only the way someone so new to the world can do. I could see the changes in her already, and my body was able to settle. Grief had completed its alchemy.

I see now the intelligence of having a full week to say goodbye to what was, and turn in expectation of what is yet to be.

I read once that “grief is an extension of love.” It’s natural. Grief evolves the Soul, and it’s important that when we honor our grief and give it space. Grief also calls up in us feelings of regret, guilt, shame, and more. If we try and suppress our grief or pay too much attention to the “feel-bad” emotions that arise along with it, then we risk getting stuck and prolong our pain.

On the other side of grief is a magical opportunity to enter the New World. Isn’t it wonderful that we have grief to help usher us out of the nest, so we can fly? Isn’t it a beautiful experience to be human and to have the awesome experience of profound love?

Today, I opened “The Wizard of Us” by Jean Houston and my eyes fell on this passage:

“Think of all the people you have helped in big or little ways. You may not even remember some of them. In fact, your contact with them may have been such that you are not aware of the remarkable impact you had on their lives. Yet they all regard you as very special, held in gratitude and honor in their own particular hall of fame. Sense them now, cherishing you. All of them, known and unknown, each giving you the empowering gift of their love and gratitude. Accept that empowering gift and allow yourself to feel cherished.”

This new world of change and empowerment is waiting for you my beautiful friend. Together, let’s open the portals to this world by walking through our grief and allowing all the people, seen and unseen, to fill our hearts with their gratitude. Let’s open our hearts fully and foolishly, letting the world rush in.

Practice:

Place your feet flat on the floor, close your eyes, and tilt your chin slightly down so the back of your neck is nice and long.

Take three “ha” breaths and feel yourself becoming more present. Feel the weight of your body in the chair or on the floor.

Relax your shoulders away from your ears, relax your face, relax your hands, fingers, legs, feet, and toes.
Breath into the heart center and imagine a beam of pink light, tinged with gold coming into your heart. This is the love of others streaming to you now. Receive this love, let the tears flow. How could they not, in response to such love?

And so it is!

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