The Power of Witness

My posts have been firing at a slow pace lately. As you may have noticed. This is not because I haven’t had the inspiration to write. It is actually quite the opposite. Life has been giving me such inspiration that I do not know how to funnel the experience into the written form, or if I should even try.

That was until yesterday. One of my massage appointments was with a woman that recently lost a son, early in his life, due to a terminal illness. This woman is the definition of grace and strength in my book and listening to her tell me her experience humbled me and stretched my heart. I could not stop my own tears from flowing.

It was a very beautiful thing to witness. It was a gift that she gave me and to others as she shares the Truth of her pain and experience.

I’ve been writing a lot about grief lately. I have been experiencing a lot of it in the last 8 years. It has been a twisted, dark path… trying to walk into the light after losing some of the only “security” a young-woman may have; the unwavering support and presence of her mother. (Disclaimer: even though my mom lives in a nursing home, it has not paralyzed her ability to support and love me. I know this more fully now.)

As I have walked out of this grief, and as I am walking out of the grief from losing the idea of my own-nuclear family more recently, it has been easy to see that not everyone is comfortable with pain, grief, or unpleasant emotions.

My “client” and teacher shared that only months after her loss friends and family are already asking if she’s better yet and essentially hoping for her to shift her Truth to one that fits their comfort level.

None of us are ever going to live a life without the experience of suffering, so why then does it make so many people uncomfortable? The answer is truly not important. What *is* important is speaking our Truths, regardless of another person’s receptivity or judgement. It can weed people out of your life that do not serve your growth, and teach in a multitude of ways and with as many lessons.

Many people who have grief hold muscular tension in their chest and neck. It has been my primary belief that this is primarily due to an increase of energetic and therefore informational processing occurring in the emotional heart which is facilitated by expression through the mouth and throat.

I have always correlated this muscular tension and holding as an indicator of a need to have an emotional release, and I still hold this to be relatively true. Yet what I learned yesterday, is that it is also a need to speak our truth. The grief process is just that, a process, and some people are well adept in allowing the emotions to pass as needed. Muscular tension will subside in that process, but tension might also be stemming from the stress of withholding what our Truth is. Speaking and sharing our stories is very important.

Grief, in my humble opinion, is the ultimate teacher for us all in our human experience. It allows us to know the depths of our heart, love, and gratitude. And eventually when we persevere, we actualize more of our pure potential.

For those of us who are able to understand our emotions, we need to speak and express them. Whenever we are called to. We are the teachers for those who may not have been nurtured to understand what their feelings are, or allowed to feel anything other than certain emotions that were acceptable. Others might not seem to “get it” right then, but that is not important. The intentional seed has been planted and God, or Source, will guide them as it fits their needs on their path.

For those of you in the grief process, my heart goes out to you. You are brave. You are a teacher. You are not weak because you don’t “snap out of it.” You have the ability to push your own boundaries and that of your fellow brothers and sisters.

May we all bear witness, in loving kindness, for those who suffer. May we give a gift of refuge through the grace of our witness and honor their perfect heart in realizing that nothing ever needs changing or fixing.

Again, for those of you grieving and brave enough to share your story, my heart goes out to you in gratitude.



Om Mani Padme Hum.
Shanti. Shanti. Shanti.



One thought on “The Power of Witness

  1. Okay! Love. None of us are ever going to live a life without the experience of suffering. Well said. Our grief, our suffering shapes us, teaches us. When the veil of grief is lifted we see life more beautifully than we did before.

    Going to read some more, you’re a beautiful writer! Nice chatting with you at #SPT!

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