Man with cardboard box on his head and sad crying face expression.Going to get a little bit on my soapbox here for this one…why do people apologise for crying when they are grieving a loved one?  I asked someone this today & her response was “It’s embarrassing…” & this was the lady who had talked about doing the crying!!  So, I then asked her why is it embarrassing?  Her response, “I don’t want people to see me cry.”  How sad for us as a society that we don’t feel that we can openly cry when we are grieving the loss or impending loss of someone precious in our worlds that we have loved.

I was speaking with another gentleman today who was grieving the loss of his wife.  She is still alive, but has advanced dementia & oftentimes does not recognise him.  The woman he has dearly loved for decades is no longer & it is absolutely heartbreaking.

Vulnerability is something that we embrace as courageous in others, yet shun as a weakness in ourselves.  And yes, you can quote me on that!!  What is wrong with this picture??  Lots!!

A part of our humanness is the gift of fully experiencing emotions – the great, the good, the bad & the downright ugly.  But we don’t have the capacity to selectively numb what we don’t want to feel – try as we might.  Any attempt to do so with denial or substances only temporarily succeeds in doing so.  And trust me, I know from experience that when we don’t allow ourselves to experience the full range of our emotions, they will come and majorly bite us on the butt somewhere down the track.  And it won’t be pretty.  And it will probably be at the most inopportune time!!

We have had one beautiful expression of someone leading by example recently.  If you are a cricket fan, you will probably know who I mean.  If you are not, stay with me!!  Our captain Michael Clarke has show so much grace in the expression of his grief that we have seen in the public arena.  He has done his job, fulfilled his role as a leader while still crying & publicly expressing how much he loved Phil Hughes & how much he will miss him.  Yes, there have been times when he tried to stifle the tears, but at other times he has still allowed them to be.  One of the things I love most about these events is that he is a man, and he has made it OK for other men to cry and mourn someone they have loved.

We all have people or fur kids in our lives that we love.  And we will all have loved ones die.  It is the reality of our human existence.  I just beg of you, within the confines of personal responsibility, allow yourself to grieve.  If you have a loved one on their end journey, feel the pain & also feel the joy in the precious gifts you can receive through this time.  Allow yourselves to fully feel the emotions that arise & allow them to flow through you.  Get to know yourself on a deep & intimate level.  Take time out of your life for you, get out into nature, sing, exercise, do whatever it is that is right for you.

And remember this, you only get to deeply grieve if you have deeply loved..& that is the gift/blessing of the experience.  Celebrate the person, celebrate the love, celebrate the relationship.

Stepping off my soapbox now.

Much love to you, Sharon