I often encourage my clients to sit with their feelings, to welcome whatever comes up for them, let them be felt, and flow through.
Our impulse is often to fight or ignore them. And this actually causes pain and tension and it merely delays.
Part of processing is feeling. It can be scary, yes, and exhausting, yes, and absolutely necessary, YES.
But what does it look like? It’s easy to say “Sit with your feelings” or “welcome your feelings”.
Sometimes it really is just sitting still.
There has been a lot going on for me these past few months, and I’ve had trouble sleeping, brain fog, numbness, all the symptoms of intense grief.
This past Friday, for some reason, my body and mind were ready. Ready to feel.
And feel I did.
It started off as frustration and annoyance. I was snippy in a conversation, biting, a little nasty, my voice sharp in my throat.
Then it slid down further and became intense sadness. My heart felt like an anvil, dragging my whole body down. I sank into my chair, my movements slowing, my arms feeling heavy, my belly aching.
My brain kept saying: you are grieving this, and you are grieving this too, oh and you are grieving this other thing as well, you are grieving.
I wept. Not sobbing, keening, or really big ugly crying, just stillness and tears freely flowing down my cheeks. My shirt became damp with them as I sat, my arms crossed protectively over my heart.
I sat quietly for about 20 minutes. I embraced the feelings, allowing them space and time in my body and mind. No fighting, no tension, just deep deep sorrow.
An hour later I went to bed.
The next morning I woke up, still sad, but not as deeply.
Still weary, but not as slow.
Still grieving, but ready for more life, more joy.
Grieving is a fierce act of self-love and self-compassion.
When grief hits you, I encourage you to welcome it in.
Sit with it, tell its story out loud, if only to yourself.
It won’t last forever, I promise you. It will transform you.
You will feel lighter. You will be more in touch with yourself.
Come, take a chair. Snuggle on the sofa. Hold yourself close.