Friday, October 19, 2012

inviting sadness, shame, & sorrow in

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
~ Rumi ~

Morning time is the hardest. I wake up and invariably the first thought I have is around the death of our baby boy. It’s either the dreadful words, “unfortunately there is no heartbeat” or it’s meeting and saying good-bye to him in the very same moment.

The thoughts I wake up to are mostly the same. It’s my feelings and emotions that change day to day, moment to moment, even breath by breath.

I’m trying to heed Rumi’s advice and “welcome them all”, something I’ve been working on for quite some time.

Some days there is sadness.

Other days there is shame.

Anger rears its head from time to time

Fear and worry have woven their way into my mind.

I’m simply sitting with the feelings and emotions as they come. Rather than stuffing, quieting, and resisting them, I allow them to be.  Sometimes I give the emotions permission to get bigger. I sob till I feel like the big blue house will come crumbling down. I stomp my feet till I feel like the earth can take back some of this pain. I write all the shameful stories and thoughts I have about myself and this experience. I listen to music that I know will help- my body to release the weight, the heaviness of the past weeks.

Then the timer goes off and I come back up for air.

I know myself well enough to know that once I go down deep into the emotions, I must have a container around it. Otherwise I’ll spend the whole day sobbing on my yoga mat. Andy would come home and find me a mess….and well it would be very, very bad.

That container is a time limit and a timer. The first day into my grieving retreat I could only experience (insert any heart wrenching emotion here) for about three minutes. Day by day this number has increased to ten minutes. The amount of time I need in between “breaking down” has also varied. But it’s happening on and off all throughout the day.

You might be wondering why I’m choosing to torture myself so?

 It’s because I refuse to let something so big happen in my life without breaking my heart wide open with the hope that I will be kinder and somehow a better human being as a result.

I refuse to sleep through this. I refuse to numb myself out.  I refuse to busy myself with work, to fill my days with useless activity.

Mostly I refuse to let the life of this little boy pass me by without changing me for the better.
I choose to accept the shame, the sadness, and sorrow with the faith that I am being cleared out for some future delight.

I trust in that.

I believe it with my whole heart.



Jen said...

I believe it, too, Sharon. Your courage and willingness to dive into dark but necessary places is truly amazing.

Jen said...

I believe it, too, Sharon. Your courage to dive into the dark and necessary places is truly amazing.

Where fibers meet mud said...

Sharon, The only shame would be in not taking the time to honor your son! Peace that surpasses all understanding be with you and Andy~~ Namaste'

Mia (Savor Everyday) said...

Thinking of you both, Sharon...with faith, hope, peace, and love.

Bratty said...

it's the hardest thing for humans - to remain in sadness and uncertainty. I support your efforts! You will prevail!