Imagine that we put a piece of butcher paper on the floor to represent a time line of your life.
Now imagine that we marked an ” x” on the paper for every loss that you have incurred over the years.
You would probably be able to identify the major ones if they happened, like a death or a divorce.
But here’s the thing-
The paper on which we drew your life would be full of X’s, some so tiny and imperceptible that you can barely see them. Nonetheless, they are present and alive in you to this day.
Most people don’t realize that there are thousands of moments at every stage in our life that are grief worthy, even if we don’t recognize them as such.
The time that you father promised to take you to the zoo, but had to work at the last minute and so you didn’t get to go.
The birth of your sibling that meant you were no longer an only child and did not have the full attention of your parents anymore.
When your family moved across the country for your parents work and you had to leave the only life you’d ever known.
Or maybe when you simply moved down the street and had to say goodbye to the bedroom that you decorated exactly how you liked it.
Honestly, there are literally thousands of examples of these microscopic paper cuts of loss. I could not begin to enumerate them all.
But what I can do is frame them in what I believe may be a radical and ( maybe) uncomfortable notion for you: all these experiences from your past are unprocessed grief. Until you begin to relate to them as such, they will remain as residue that clogs up your system and prevents you from feeling fully vital.
Ok. So, at this point you might be thinking ” Seriously, Candace? You are telling me that losing my favorite doll at the park 25 years ago is a loss and needs to be grieved?”
Yes. Yes I am.
Because your doll mattered to you. Or your house, or your room, or your plans, or your relationships, or whatever the thing is for you. And that is what grieving does; It gives you permission to acknowledge that something was ( or is ) important to you that no longer exist in the way they once did.
When you are denied this expression, something in you hardens and shuts down. It has to in order to align with the story that it wasn’t that big of a deal. Often that story is perpetuated or enforced by (possibly well- meaning) adults who tell you to stop crying, or that you can get another doll, or aren’t you excited to be moving and how may new friends you will make, etc.
It’s not that that’s not true, It’s just that this response allows no room for your sadness, your disappointment, your heartbreak, your rage, or whatever else is present at that time.
Do you know what happens after years and years of this?
You arrive into adulthood totally disconnected from your own heart.
So much of the work that my clients and I do together is unthaw the frozen feelings. To allow the expression of the pain that has been wanting to come trough emerge.
The tears start to flow for the first time maybe ever. It’s why clients tell me that they are afraid to start crying because they might not stop. It’s not because they can’t handle their own emotions, it’s because there are so many of them that have been back logged that it’s like the flood gate opens and they are able to finally move.
And then, little by little, life returns to them as a result of the energy that is circulating in their bodies. They feel less like a cardboard cut out of themselves and more like a fuller, three dimensional human with depth and width.
It’s such a beautiful process to witness.
And you can start right now, wherever you are. Let your shatter. Let it break wide open for all the past and present hurts. If you’d like my help along the way, I’d be honored.