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As a reminder to anyone reading Songs & Sorrow regularly, and to those who have yet to discover it — I write these posts for two main reasons:

1. To share my heart openly, allowing my grief to be seen and heard by those who choose to listen, in the hopes that I will help someone else who is hurting.

2. To change the views and opinions on grief that western society has formulated, in a way that will transform our perceptions and connections, bringing stronger community togetherness.

A few of my recent experiences have fueled this entry.

1. I finished reading ‘Secrets of the Talking Jaguar’ by Martin Prechtel.

2. I watched the movie ‘Avatar’.

3. I began reading ‘Swallowed by a Snake’ written by Thomas Golden.

For such an advanced modern society, we are severely lacking. We distance ourselves from death and grief so much so that when we do inevitably encounter it, we have no framework by which to process, and no skills to cope, let alone attempt to support others who are grieving.

We laugh and we celebrate with our friends and neighbors, yet we do not cry together. We shun and avoid those who openly show their pain and suffering. I long for a day when we can come together in pain, as well as joy.

From my new vantage point as a bereaved parent, from within the belly of the beast [grief], I view the world so differently than I once did. I was one of those people who, like most of you, thought ‘that will not ever happen to me’ — until it did… And, whether we want to consciously admit it or not, death touches us all, eventually.

Life and death are equally full of mystery. Life is sacred, and death is part of what helps us to appreciate each moment we are blessed to live.

I do not have the answers; I am simply along for the ride. And so, I leave you with these wise words to ponder:

‘Once a culture is deprived of its death, it loses its health.’ (Ivan Illich)

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One Comment

  1. Brava, sweet Caitlin. Like you I believe we, as a society, do ourselves a huge dis-service in the way we deal (?) with death, dying and the experience of having a loved one die.
    Even 5 plus yrs later my life is marked by Aug 16, 2004 … before and after Journey died. Today , I feel more comfortable in my grieving skin.

    Much love, KK


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