Moments of Silence: The Grief Process

Deep within the crevices of our soul, we long for the moments of silence that can take us away from the sights, sounds and feelings that are bombarding us all the time.  In grief, these bombardments seem to be heightened mainly because we don’t know how to turn them off.  You are either too weak, lost, overwhelmed, angry, or rationalizing that you are super-human.

There are so many bombs being dropped that it is hard to find a moment of silence. My experiences during these bombardments left me partially deaf.  What I mean by that is I could sense people talking, the world doing its usual hustle and bustle, animals making their normal noises, and the daily expectations from friends and friends, but it was in a muted world with the dullness of sight, sound, and mostly feelings.  With so many zombie movies on television, I can identify with the zombies in a way, with their far away looks and the disconnect of senses, and numbness throughout the body.

Each of us wants, needs, or must find things that give us silence to stabilize.  It is like being on a teeter totter and standing in the middle.  Balance replaces chaos and brings a little peace.  Some people sleep, some meditate, some go for a walk and sit in a park.  Some read, go to the beach, take a shower or even talk to themselves.  The goal is to find something that takes you away “Calgon” and gives a moment of silence even if just for a few minutes.

I found myself doing all of these. It was a little disconcerting realizing that I was walking, meditating, reading, and talking to myself all at the same time.  Oh well, when you are in grief, people tend to give you more space than they usually would.  Besides, they tend to run from the elephant in the room, so talking to yourself may be the only person you can talk to.  At least that is what I rationalized at the time.

Grief does not have to be a full-time job.  You can take these moments of silence and tap into a much-needed reprieve, because guess what?  Your grief will still be there waiting for you when you get back and trust me, it will be ready to usher you back into the swirling trap of the noise and the confusion that it wants you to hang out in a little longer.

But, my contention is that if you can figure out what moments of silence you would most benefit from, when you do come back into the grief process, it just might be a little less potent each time.  That potential gives us all hope that over time grief will lessen its grip on our lives and slowly fade into the sunset.  It will never completely go away, but you then might be able to recall it whenever you want under your own control and turn it into a memory of life instead of death.

So, why not tell grief to take a back seat for a while and give yourself what you deserve? Maybe over time, these moments of silence will help you move away from griefs clutches in a healthy way.  If nothing else you confused grief and had a little peace at the same time.

~Mike Russell

Mike Russell

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Having grown up in the Air Force in the 50's and 60's, I was able to travel with my family around the world to various bases which opened my mind to the issues affecting people. I grew up in Arizona after my dad retired. I got married in 1975 and was married for 34 years, during which I graduated from Oregon State University and went to work in banking. After the death of my wife in 2009, and through the opening up of my senses during the grief process, I wrote poetry, created a blog, wrote a book and reconnected with my best friend. We created a business called T Michael Healing Arts in Beaverton Oregon after being married. As a business, we serve the Holistic crowd, put on classes, and workshops, as well as attend various fairs around the Northwest. We have two books out at the moment, and contribute monthly articles to the Sedona Journal of Emergence. My journey in grief through all the deaths in my own family has brought me to the point where I became a certified grief counselor, minister, and have written a book on my spiritual journey through grief, as well as many articles on the subject. My goal is to help as many people as possible through their own grief journeys by telling them my story and supporting them with the hope that there are others out there that will support and understand them, and that it is possible to come out of the fog in one piece.

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