Last night I spoke at the Grief Support Network in Boulder, Colorado. I shared parts of my grief journey that I've never shared before- the lack of community support and understanding I've received, as well as the physical challenges and limitations that resulted from my grief.
Standing in front of an entire room of people, sharing some of my most vulnerable experiences with loss, was a powerful reminder for me. A reminder of how to ride my emotional edge as well as honor my vulnerability and my grief.
How can I connect and share? Feel connected with others? Even when navigating my vulnerable inner terrain, my story of loss and trauma?
I've resisted my vulnerability for so long. I've resisted sharing anything about my grief. It hasn't felt safe to share my feelings and needs with others. Consequently, I haven't been getting my needs met very well. Read more about how to get your needs met.
In fact, recently, I've realized just how few of my needs are actually being met.
How much I've been living in a place that is more about survival than actually thriving. I've been feeling the impact of this on all levels of my life- especially in my relationships, money, and my ability to play and have fun. I've been stuck in the story of just getting my basic needs met- like food, clothing, shelter, making it through the day to day existence stuff. This is very much connected to living with my grief. In fact, simplicity has been crucial to regaining a sense of inner stability, to returning to life.
But as I return to life once again, I'm realizing that living in survival, with only my basic needs being met, is leaving me with little else. With very little affirmation and reassurance from others. Getting only a basic level of support from my relationships. Not enjoying playfulness, fun, ease and time away from work. From the outside, it might look like I'm getting all my needs met. But inside, I've been feeling a growing dissatisfaction with my life.
Disappointment, resentment, fear, discouragement, anger, sadness, hostility, feelings of withdrawing or lashing out- are all signs that specific needs are not being met.
Yes, your emotional body is the barometer of your needs.
My grief journey has cracked me wide open. There's nothing like loss to awaken all the places within you that are unattended to, that lack nourishment and holding. The nature of grief is a process of release, letting go, endings. Holes arrive- in all layers of your life. Deep, painful wounds begin to surface, showing themselves in ways that have long gone unnoticed. Grief brings your pain, darkness and shadow to the light, to the surface.
As I shared with the Grief Support Network last night, there were two basic needs that were not met for me during my early grief process. Needs that became painfully clear during my grief. What came to light was the lack of support, holding, and structure that was missing in my life. Without a safe container- inside and out- there's no safety, no stability, and no baseline for growth and nourishment. It is a basic need. I had multiple challenges within my own physical body support systems. I also was forced to recognize that the support systems I had in place on the outside, were not able to meet me or hold me in my deepest pain. I was left feeling completely isolated, alone and ungrounded.
From a jyotish perspective, this baseline structure in life is shown through Saturn. He is your inner support system- like the skeleton, bones, the physical body. Saturn can also show you what type of outer structure and support is available to you. He is also the indicator of your grief. Everyone has grief because everyone has a Saturn. Wondering how grief touches your life? Look at Saturn in your jyotish chart.
Grief is your vulnerability.
It is the part of your life that has no answers, no solutions, no way to be repaired. It is the territory of loss and the process of letting go. This place is fragile- like a seed still incubating in the ground, waiting to burst forth. It is a transitional point, a time of change. The grief journey is a process of awakening- if we use it as such.
My own grief has been my biggest teacher in this life. It has been teaching me the fallacy of healing. I've been awakening to the realization that there is in fact nothing to fix or change within me. My grief has taught me about building a relationship with my vulnerability, my pain and discomfort, rather than resisting it or avoiding it.
Death has been such an intimate part of my existence. I've been reluctant and resistant to honor that reality. I loathe it in fact, but I can no longer deny this truth. Walking a path of life long grief, being forced to re-visit trauma and losses now several times over, has forced me to return to this place of vulnerability again and again.
This vulnerability is the wisdom of the 8th house of your jyotish chart.
It is the house of vulnerability, that which you most fear and would rather not look at. It is your grief, pain, darkness and shadow. It is also your transformation and transcendence. It is your grief journey. To more deeply understand your relationship with grief and vulnerability, study the 8th house of your jyotish chart. Right now, Saturn is moving through Scorpio by transit, provoking these themes quite literally. The impact on everyone right now is very important. Read more about Saturn in Scorpio
As a human, your natural tendency is to resist your vulnerability. It isn't comfortable, so why move closer to it? Yet, leaning into the places that feels discomfort, can be extremely powerful and transformational. Leaning into your grief is the medicine for life.
The theme of this Saturn in Scorpio transit is to deepen your relationship with the emotional body, that most vulnerable inner terrain within you. In fact, to lean into your grief. Moon (your emotional body) is considered debilitated, or fallen, in Scorpio. The Moon wants to express itself, which is why it is considered exalted in Taurus, associated with the second house of speech. Moon in Scorpio, associated with the 8th house, is the most hidden house of the chart, therefor the Moon doesn't get to express itself; it gets lost, suppressed or avoided. The second house is also the mirror of the 8th house, expressing the polarities of inner and outer expression.
My grief continues to teach me about my own relationship with vulnerability- my own resistance, suppression and avoidance of my emotional body. The big waves all the way to the small ripples. The tide pools to the flooding of a high tide. I've also been learning a lot about other peoples resistance to their emotions- mainly as a result of witnessing others' discomfort with mine. And of course I always learn so much from my amazing clients- tracking their stories with grief, and how foreign this process is to most people.
As a body-centered expressive art therapist. I have been through several therapy programs, been to countless healers and sought quite a bit of support for my needs over the past many years. I also grew up in a spiritual community. None of these communities or supposed support systems have truly been able to honor my grief in a way that has felt safe. I’ve been disappointed and challenged so many times by the lack of holding and support that I have received for my emotion, for my grief. I say this because in my experience, it is very rare to be held, witnessed and fully seen in the grief process.
I have found that in our culture there is little to no holding for grief. As a result, most people grieve in isolation. Alone, with no one to mirror to them that they are safe, held, supported, normal. The truth is, it is entirely normal to feel pain as a result of loss. I want to see grief normalized.
The grief process has the potential to be a powerful transformational journey. It can awaken us, heal us and create more resiliency- if we have the right resources and support- inside and out. Community holding is one of the most important resources I’ve found, as well as re-learning how to live in your physical body through embodiment resources. But this process requires consistent nonjudgmental holding, witnessing, affirming and a safe container- in order to fully support the metamorphosis of the healing process- inner and outer. It requires that your vulnerability is honored and allowed to exist.
Your past experiences and stories, all impact your ability to feel safe. To feel safe with your feelings, emotions- and the expression of them. Wherever you've experienced a lack of holding, criticism or judgement, you will naturally resist moving closer to these parts of you that are in pain. Your grief will amplify this lack. The places where you feel vulnerable and unsafe.
Are you listening?
Your grief is begging you to not just honor your vulnerability, but to lean into it more closely. It wants you to allow it and be in a relationship with it. Your grief and your vulnerability are hugging each other closely. From this place, profound potential is created. Within your loss and the fragility of this pain, there is something more that is available to you. Your vulnerability can you teach you this. Your grief can help you awaken to the places within that scare you the most- so that you can heal them, re-shape them, and re-create your life. It is through the wisdom and intelligence of your emotional body, that you can truly arrive in radical self awareness, your inner truth, as well as your deepest needs for nourishment.
I want to make sure you don't walk this territory alone. That you have the holding and support that I did not receive. That you get the nourishment of being honored in your grief journey and for your grief journey- in way that truly helps you awaken to its gifts. Now I know what works, and I'm committed to sharing these resources with you.
I'll be sharing more resources in the coming days for those of you, like me, who are navigating the grief process- a lifelong journey of deepening your emotional body wisdom.
Look for more resources, guidance and support coming in the next few weeks to support you with your healing and transformation through loss. I'll also be sharing a special offering for those of you dedicated to your spiritual awakening through grief. Follow Along
Tapping Meditation for Grief
Use this Tapping Meditation to work through your grief process- when you feel stuck, afraid or resistant to change. Remember that we always start with "truth tapping" by expressing feelings and experiences that feel challenging. This is a vital part of the process and paves the way for transformation and healing.
In the podcast below, I share a tapping (EFT) sequence with you that will guide you through transforming and releasing the old stories and invite in more receptivity. Remember, we start with identifying the challenges, then moving into possibility and desires in order to transform our shadow into light.
Use this podcast as you tap through these points:
Karate chop point (side of the hand).
Crown of the head.
Eyebrow point (above the eye).
Side of the eye.
Under the eye.
Under the nose.
Chin point (crease of the chin).
Throat point (collar bone/throat chakra).
Heart point (center of chest).
Stomach point (above the navel).
Side body (nipple line at side of chest).
Tap six to ten times on each point and just keep cycling through the points. Repeat the phrases I use aloud. Notice any thoughts, stories, memories or emotions that emerge as you tap. These are important pieces to return to, do more tapping on, as a way to clear blockages. As always, if the words I use don't work for you, change them to support your process more fully.
Share your experiences below! What emerged for you in this process? Excited to hear from you!