Grief needs a witness.

What that means is that you need to find someone or something that deeply hears you.
That accepts you and sees you in your grief, with unconditional with love and acceptance.

Having a witness helps you not feel so alone. It provides an avenue to release sorrow,
grief, anger, worry and fear.

Holding it inside so very close to one’s heart without a witness keeps you locked in loneliness and “whispers the o’er fraught heart and bids it break.”*

Having a witness helps you to see your way out of the darkness.

Grief needs expression.

The form of expression and even the witness can be words on a page, a poem, a story or song, paint on a canvas, singing to a tree, carving a stone or talking to God.

I know two women whose husbands were tragically killed in separate motorcycle accidents. One opened a store after her husband died. The other woman launched a non-profit. After my father passed from cancer, my brother became interested in learning about alternative cancer treatments. During the next ten years he researched and wrote a book serving to disseminate information for those diagnosed with late stage cancer, offering alternatives and hope.

You can plant a garden, pen a book, shoot a film, or build an empire and create some thing, anything, to help yourself, or even serve others in their time of need. In journaling you do not die with your feelings of loss, but slowly they are seen, witnessed, validated and accepted, There is some relief in that. 

*”Give sorrow words. The grief that does not speak whispers the o’er fraught heart and bids it break.” William Shakespeare

Stay tuned for Part III

**This post is excerpted from the book Journaling for Well-Being & Peace

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