A number of people have exclaimed to me: “It’s spring and it’s beautiful and yet I only feel sadder. I thought my sorrow would lift in the spring, yet I feel even heavier.”
They go on to ask: “This doesn’t make sense, does it?”
They are right – how does this make sense, as don’t we think of spring as a time of re-birth? The trees are sprouting buds and leaves, the grass is getting long enough to mow, flowers of
varying hues are blooming, and the birds are singing songs of joy! So why do some folks feel more grief in the spring when everything is bursting with new growth? I believe it’s precisely
because Spring is so lovely and new that this season of growth makes our hearts ache again for what or who we lost. And it’s the very fact that Spring is bursting and expanding while we
are contracting in our grief that makes us feel heavier and more sorrowful. This contrast between the re-birth of springtime and our own state of bereavement is perhaps the single biggest
reason why some of us carry greater sadness in this season.
So – how do we live with this contradiction between what we are feeling on the inside and what is happening on the outside with new growth?
First, we drop our expectations for how we SHOULD be feeling. The belief that we should be feeling better, not worse, because it’s Spring makes our grief weightier.
Instead, let’s accept where we are RIGHT NOW on our grief journey and all that means for us at the present moment.
Second, we also recognize and embrace the idea of impermanence. We realize that things are constantly changing, and that the weight of sorrow we carry will
also evolve over time.
Finally, we realize, that, like Spring, we are also growing. Even though the signs of our own growth may be imperceptible to us at the moment, they are underneath the dirt,
and one day, small roots will emerge and turn into new plants bursting with energy.
THOUGHT FOR TODAY
Today may I accept myself just as I am, knowing that like the blooms of spring, I, too, am growing new roots in the midst of my sorrow.
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