• Judy Mortellaro


Grief arises swiftly with loss and takes residence in the deep caverns of the heart. It can be cold with lack of light in the closed off rooms once filled with joy. It can be hot as it passionately burns holes in the linings of reality. Grief has no favorites. It is quick to rush in when a last breath is taken; when a pump no longer beats like a drum; when a step is no longer taken alongside another. No questions asked, no forms to fill out, no interviews to establish appropriateness. It is not possible to prepare for grief. It is inconceivable to prevent its emergence. When grief finds a home, it is reluctant to move. It is all consuming and eats the fuel that energizes and supports living. It causes pain and clouds awareness.

What then is grief's role? How can grief be so selfish and thrive on the throbbing pain inevitable and inherent in what's been taken so thoughtlessly, so cruelly? Is there any light to be had out of the grief? Is there nothing good about grief? Is true then that grief is synonymous with suffering and pain?

Grief loves more grief. It thrives on its own ego. It is requesting more of the same to be able to gain strength and momentum. It will grow as much as it is given the space to do so. How is it possible to evict grief once it takes residence? Can light fill the holes grief burns? Can a being dig out of the darkness and rid itself of grief?

Perhaps grief asks for nothing more than recognition. A chance to be embraced? Perhaps when grief is met in the depths of its lonely cave, it is given its moment to be

known as the "soul" of loss. Perhaps, grief does not burn holes or close doors without purpose. Rather, alternatively it requests attention and presence to be a partner, an escort into the darkness only to be a part of the journey towards the light. Perhaps, grief does have a role, a forever role, a guide that doesn't allow forgetfulness, yet provides openings to draw in the light. A light that surrounds the pain and alters the suffering. A light that fosters love and compassion. Perhaps, then, grief is a gift.

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