Less emotion, more heart among the bereaved

tender2We put a lid on our emotion when Mike died. We tentatively shared emotion when Emily died. We shared heart when Warren died.

I used to hide emotions. Part of the reason was I had so many emotions jumbled together that any attempt to express them came out so rough and raw that no one knew how to respond. I choked on my words, and that was awkward for myself and others. If I started to talk about emotions, I was afraid I’d not be able to stop.

I don’t feel the need to hide emotion much anymore. So why wasn’t I sharing emotion at Warren’s funeral?

It took a while, and then it dawned on me. We were sharing heart. And I could tell that the words that flowed from my heart were helpful and healing.

How did I/does someone go from choking on emotions to gracefully sharing heart at times of great sadness and loss? For me, it was years of finding places where I could say what I thought, felt and wanted, however rough and raw.That opened blocked communication channels.

I returned from the family funeral in awe, not pain. We get to the awe from experiencing the pain. Doubtless will make that journey again in our future. The words are smoother now, and the trip from pain to awe is smoother, too. That gives heart.

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