Day 34: The cost of judging our grief…
One powerful learning I’m metabolizing as of late is that so much harm is done when we assign moral meaning to our emotions (thanks, Mike Elkin, IFS trainer). Emotions do not have moral meaning. They are a result of us being human beings.
So many of us have been socialized and taught to assign moral meaning to the experience of and emotions of grief—meaning we judge ourselves for the extent of the pain and mire and the torture of it. We are meaning making machines, us humans. We want this pain to meaning something—and to fill in the gap of reasoning here, we tend to self-blame, self-punish, and assign the reason for the pain of our grief as the result of some flaw in ourselves.
Yes, the fact that we are experiencing the immense pain of grief means we are human. That is it. That is all. That is the end of the sentence. AND, that can be hard to sit with.
The cost of judging our own grief is that our grief doesn’t get to move—it doesn’t get to evolve. It gets stuck. Francis Weller speaks to this so simply in this quote.
So be kind. To you own self in this process. And not because it sounds good—but because it is a matter of survival.
Welcome to my second, 100-day project. I hope to provide a daily offering on something grief-related. I am a grief therapist and educator working with people in Oregon, Washington, DC, Maryland, and Maine. This feed is in honor of each person who has trusted me with their stories and wisdom during their grief journey. I hope that others may benefit from simple and straightforward talk about a topic that can be difficult.