By Jill Emich, Spirit Warrior and Owner of Shine Restaurant and Gathering Place, www.shineboulder.com
Grief is a word that invokes emptiness inside. It conjures loneliness and feeing forsaken, forlorn, lost – a sadness so deep that it feels palpable and overwhelming. But as I have also learned, grief is one of our biggest teachers. It is a gift to dive deeper and to heal and in turn help other to heal.
Most of us have felt grief at some point or another in their lives either from personal experiences or from witnessing another in emotional pain. The first time I experienced grief was when I learned that my dear brother Dennis was born a twin and that my mother had lost one at birth. I hadn’t known this until my early teen years when my mom shared her story. Being a triplet myself (yes my mom was just very, very fertile), I felt such a sense of grief for my brother and my mother’s loss.
The fact that my brother shared a womb with another spirit and another body and then surfaced into this world alone was heartbreaking. What affect did it have on his little soul then and what affect does it have now? I will never truly know because my brother is mentally and physically challenged. The only way he communicates is through his powerful huge smile, through his facial expressions, his tears, and those eyes…..
So I grieved for him and with him. I felt all those overwhelming feelings and then I decided to shift it. I started to recognize the gifts. First and foremost my brother Dennis is still here with us and he has taught me and my family about compassion, patience, acceptance and unconditional love. His story and his existence has made me a better person and I want to share that love and compassion with others. I also know Dennis has a powerful twin angel on his shoulder, protecting him and whispering sweetness into his ear. And, my brother is the glue of our family. He has kept the love strong between all of us and has kept us united. The very rare disease he has gives a life sentence of approximately 25 years. My brother is 44 and his doctors attribute his liveliness to his amazing care, love and his inner strength. His loss has made him strong, it has – this I know. It has made my family strong.
The other way I am able to transform this feeling of grief is by reaching out to others, sharing the story and hearing other peoples story of grief and how we can transform it through community and family. This is why I know the Grief Support Network is such a powerful and important organization. It is something I am so proud to help support. We need one another to heal, to grow, to share, to see a new perspective.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and to learn more about Grief Support Network. We hope to see you at Shine on September 12h for GSN’s Gratitude Celebration & Fundraiser!