Make space for the sadness, the grief, the loss and make space for the relief and the hope.
Sit down with these feelings and invite them into your home, into your mind. Let them be something else for you now. Renounce whatever preconceptions you’ve had of them before, no longer believe there is something wrong with them. Make them something else. Allow them to be something else. It’s as simple as that. It’s almost too simple. Just play with the idea of giving them an alternate reality.
It’s hard because you go somewhere with it all. You go somewhere else with it. You take these feelings and you transform them into something else, you give them another identity. Meaning you’re not right where it is. You don’t just look right at it, feel it exactly for what it is - no more, no less.
How many things have you felt so much more of than what they actually are.
Just stay, stay, stay present with it all - it allows you to just see it for what it really is. The labels disappear. Play with the idea of allowing the labels to be gone.
Be present right there with it all and feel it. Just feel the sadness, feel the pain. Cry it out, let it out, yell. Crawl up into a ball and let yourself process and feel and release and expunge as a human. When we let ourselves feel what we need to feel, when we let our bodies go through what they need, it can wash away. This is the process of life. It’s waves. They come rushing in but then they must retreat.
Stay right there with it. Don’t run away with an idea about it. Don’t take an almost-glance then look away quickly and run away. I think that’s why they tell you to look a predatory animal in the eyes and it will cower away. I think that’s why they advise us to go right back into the nightmare we just woke up from and chase the person chasing us.
Tibetan Buddhist Pema Chodron explains:
“To think that we can finally get it all together is unrealistic. To seek for some lasting security is futile. To undo our very ancient and very stuck habitual patterns of mind requires that we begin to turn around some of our most basic assumptions. Believing in a solid, separate self, continuing to seek pleasure and avoid pain, thinking that someone “out there” is to blame for our pain - one has to get totally fed up with these ways of thinking. One has to give up hope that this way of thinking will bring us satisfaction. Suffering begins to dissolve when we can question the belief or hope that there’s anywhere to hide.”
“This addiction has a painful effect on society: a society based on lots of people addicted to getting ground under their feet is not a very compassionate place.”
“Rather than letting our negativity get the better of us, we could acknowledge that right now we feel like a piece of shit and not be squeamish about taking a good look. That’s the compassionate thing to do. That’s the brave thing to do. We could smell that piece of shit. We could feel it; what is its texture, color and shape?
We can explore the nature of that piece of shit. We can know the nature of dislike, shame, and embarrassment and not believe there’s something wrong with that. We can drop the fundamental hope that there is a better “me” who one day will emerge. We can’t just jump over ourselves as if we were not there. It’s better to take a straight look at all our hopes and fears. Then some kind of confidence in our basic sanity rises.”
What is really to be said for embracing these feelings. It transforms them…. and it almost feels too taboo to say or accept. How free you can become.
And then you’re brought back to moments of reality where it’s not that easy to think so… open-mindedly, benevolently… in this somewhat spiritually enlightened way. You’re reminded your human. Yet so what? Don’t beat yourself up about it. You start again right where this blog began. You remind yourself it’s all okay. The whole experience is all OK. And you just let yourself find and feel the comfort in that truth.
At times, the concepts proposed in this blog are easy to realize and connect with, generating an awesome feeling of freedom. And at other times you just need a slow song and to cry. So just take care of yourself, allow yourself to feel any and all of this in your own divine, life experience and not label it as something wrong. For what reason would you ever beat yourself up about something like that?
Just get back here when you can. The OK-ness is not going anywhere. Now you have a sounding board.
Consider the possibility of looking at it all differently. Consider an alternate reality where when you feel sadness and pain and heartache, you take it as a reminder that you are a living, breathing thing and you get feelings that so much of life doesn’t get.
Relish it as an experience of being alive. Similar to the cold rain or snow falling on you. It’s not going to kill you, but it’s uncomfortable. But sometimes you talk about the idea of going out there and feeling it.
Why do you do that? Why do any of us say that we want to just get out there and feel the rain? What would happen if you knew the rain? Would it all be okay?
This song I’ve included below has always been one of my favorites and is called “If You Only Knew the Rain” by Balmorhea.