I went to my first grief group tonight. It was kind of wonderful. I'm pretty leery of groups but this one felt...real, welcoming, honest, safe. There was a lot of humor and a lot of pain and a lot of tears. A kind of perfect combination. I was welcomed easily and with compassion. I found myself wondering if suffering the loss of someone you love so deeply can really open you up and make you different. I mean I know it does, but I think maybe it can make you vastly different. Different from most other folks out there; more open, more honest, more compassionate, less willing to tolerate the small stuff. Maybe I just want to think I'm gonna be special. That all of this will have some Greater Meaning. That I will belong to some special club. Or maybe, if you let it, grief really can open you up to a deeper way of being in the world. Probably it's some of both, like most things are. Anyway, tonight the group opened up a bit more space for me to breathe and I am grateful.
I've noticed this week that I have had a sense of myself again. I don't know how to explain that feeling. It's sad because I am not a part of an "us." But it's also kind of nice to feel a sense of my whole self, not something broken. Like everything else, it is a bit of both happy and sad, easy and hard. If I have learned nothing else, I have learned that there are no black and whites in this process. Everything is shades of gray. I'm grateful for the shades of gray, those black and whites are a tough roller coaster to ride.
Grateful today...for other's on this journey, for possibility, for space to breathe.