Focusing Tip #725 – Losing a beloved spouse

Focusing Tip #725 – Losing a beloved spouse
October 14, 2020 Ann Weiser Cornell
What do you do with raw, visceral grief? Read on...

Focusing Tip #725 – Losing a beloved spouse

What do you do with raw, visceral grief? Read on…


David writes:

I lost my wife Sarah about a year and a half ago. We were together for 32 years. A question I have for myself quite often is what to do with my raw, visceral grief. Sometimes I relate to it … other times I just weep very deeply … and as far as I can see both are required. What are your thoughts about this?

Part of me is scared of the raw weeping. Shame also comes into it, the words, “I’m such a mess.”

Dear David:

I am so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine what that would be like, to lose someone who was so woven into your life. It is so understandable that you would be grieving deeply.

About your grieving process, I would say that you can trust it. You said that you sometimes relate to it… and I assume you mean that you say something like, “I am sensing how much grief is here… and I am being with it with compassion.”

And sometimes you weep very deeply. And as far as you can see, both are required. I would agree.

And I would say you can even do both at the same time. Awareness is presence, even when deep weeping is happening.

Here’s my Tip: The part of you that needs some extra company is the part that is ashamed about the weeping. Acknowledge it by saying, “I am sensing something in me is worried that I’m a mess.”

This part doesn’t want you to be “a mess,” or to be seen by others as a mess. You can let it know you hear it, kindly, but without agreeing with it.

Society has so many ways to silence our emotions. “Don’t be a mess.” “Don’t fall apart.” Crying is called “breaking down.” Really? Emotions are a natural expression of living process. Grieving is natural… and your body knows how to do it. Just be present and allow the process itself to carry you… as you already are.

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