My little one has recently gotten into watching old Charlie Brown movies, and as a result, “Good Grief” is his new catchphrase. It’s funny how you can hear a phrase over and over throughout the years, and then one day, it hits you in a different way. Good grief.
I’ve been feeling some grief lately. I’m feeling stirred up, ruffled. And in talking to my friend Amy yesterday, who is feeling the same, I realized….it is sometimes good to feel grief. To feel things deeply. To recognize what is driving me from the inside. This grief, this aching that woke me with nightmares last night, that made me bolt upright this morning sure that we were having an earthquake, that keeps churning in my gut, it is good. It’s good because it keeps me on my toes, keeps me alert, reminds me I’m human and alive. It reminds me to look within, to examine what is motivating me, what’s holding me back.
There were violent windstorms last night, trees thrashing themselves against the house, battering the windows, reflecting what I feel in my soul. Winter is clearing me out, sweeping every corner of unfinished business. It’s not letting me hide any more.
Grief is like a fire in your soul, purifying, transforming you. If you let it.
I told Amy sometimes I wish we didn’t feel things so deeply. It can be excruciating to be wide awake in your own life. But if we weren’t, what would we write about? What kind of artistic truth could we bring to the world? We would just numb ourselves out watching reality shows, thriving on other people’s drama.