Sideways death.

If there’s someone you know who has died, it is if they are standing on your side. They are standing just to the right of you. They are outside of your field of vision. You can’t see them but you know they’re there and you can still talk to them.

That’s the most important part. You can still talk to them and you can still hear them, albeit in a different way. You don’t hear them with your ears, but with your heart.

It’s a whole different way of being with someone. Our society doesn’t talk about it, and we don’t have words for it. I’m making them up right now.

But it is real, and they are still there. It may not seem like it, because they aren’t right in front of you. But they are still there.

Try this when you are in need – call upon your relatives who have died/passed on/transitioned. Call upon them – all of them. Call upon those who you knew, and those who you didn’t.

Remember that you are the net result of all of their efforts. It is as if life is a relay race and they have one by one passed the baton on, resulting in you. You are it. You are the peak of the mountain. They existed just so that you can be here now.

Soak in that feeling.

And know that they are cheering you on.

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Weeds or flowers?

What do you pay attention to, the weeds or the flowers?

If you were gardening, sure you have to pull the weeds out. If you don’t take the weeds out they are going to crowd the flowers and you won’t have healthy flowers.

But if all you do is notice the weeds then you’re not going to pay any attention to the flowers. The flowers are going to wilt and wither. They’re going to get eaten by worms. They’re not going to be strong.

Also, all you’re looking at your whole time gardening is the stuff you don’t want to look at. You’re not looking at the stuff that you started gardening for.

Likewise, with your feelings, your emotions, your life, anything that you pay attention to is what you’re giving attention to. You’re giving your energy away. So make sure you’re giving it away to the right thing.

The other side of grief

You know how it hurts when you see something that reminds you of your loved one? Or hear a song that they liked, or eat a food that the used to make for you? Sometimes you’ll see something and think Hey, I need to call her and tell her about this.

But you can’t call her, because she has died. And then it hurts a lot. Then that wound of grief is opened back up, raw.

This happens often when you are newly grieving, but can also happen years later.

I’ve realized something that can help.

Every time you have one of those moments, that is your loved one thinking of you. That is your loved one saying “Hey, I’m still around. You can’t see me, but I’m still here.”

Every time you hear that song, see something that would make her a great present, find a book you want to tell her about – every time she comes to mind that is her saying that she loves you – and she is thinking about you just as much as you are thinking about her.

Death just changes the relationship. It doesn’t end it. It shifts it sideways instead of straight on. With death, the spirit is free to be with you any time. There is no limitation of a body.