Being a happy person, it has taken me a long time to make friends with the emotions that don’t fit my desired perception of myself.
The Yama, Satya invites us to meet ourselves and the world truthfully. Applying this to our emotions can sometimes be challenging. How many times in life have we swallowed our frustration, anger, grief and not processed these, and many more emotions? And it’s not restricted to the less fun feelings either. What about the unexpressed joy, humour, laughter, love that we held back, perhaps because we decided it wasn’t an appropriate time to show them?
In this last week I have kept returning to Rumi’s The Guesthouse.
And I love this description of our feelings. That they are simply guests. Some will stay longer than others, some will just be fleeting visits, but none will be permanent residents, even the ‘good’ ones. To have our feelings be able to move through us. And if perhaps in that moment, for whatever reason, we choose not to meet them, it is essential that we let them know that they will be given time to have their story be heard.
To sit with each of them, to acknowledge and validate each one for what they are, with respect and compassion. To listen to their story without judging or getting entangled. Understanding where they came from and why they’re here has been the kindest way for me to travel through this unfamiliar terrain of grief and loss.
And that’s the thing, isn’t it? The heartbreakingly rewarding experience of life, to open ourselves up to all it offers, with grace and gratitude, that we are here, that we get this opportunity, and to find the kindest, most effective, healthiest way through. Time and time again