the loosening and the rebirth

This brilliant blogger wrote today:

“Resolve” originates in the Latin resolvere: “to loosen, undo, settle,” a seemingly paradoxical combination of the intensive prefix re and solvere (to loosen)… I wonder how the same word can mean both becoming settled and becoming undone.. Isn’t that also what the process of grief is?  I have become undone by it, but it also has settled into me, not necessarily always for the worse.   It has given me the resolve to do what I feel I must to honor Jim in this new life without him.

Yes. Grief has loosened me, settled me, created me into something new. I gaze with wonder at what grew in the wake of that fiery blaze, the green tendrils of life that appear among the smoldering ashes, reaching towards the sun.

I’m only human; I flinch away from pain and seek out pleasure. But if I look beyond simplistic judgement of suffering=bad and pleasure=good, I can embrace the new beginnings, the wisdom, the joy that sprung forth from the losses in my life.  I still want my mother with me, but the pain of losing has birthed (and is still birthing) something totally new into existence in my heart. This new way of being is still developing and I’m only beginning to understand how I have changed. I probably don’t seem that much different on the outside, but there is a shift in my core.  I linger longer when admiring a soaring bird or blooming rose, I laugh deeper, I am happier being me. Her death taught me how to live, and today I can it better- with more gratitude, more hope, more joy.

Like our mother’s suffered in bringing us forward into the world, our grief can unravel that which no longer serves us, burn the barriers we have built around our hearts down to a grey, crumbling ash, and allow us to be born into a new life. I have resolve- to both let go and to settle, to be rooted in my self and trust that on the wings of my suffering I can fly, in the charred remains of what was I can bloom again.

9 thoughts on “the loosening and the rebirth

  1. runningonsober

    This is so beautiful. Grief is almost a molting–a loosening, yes–that lets us rid ourselves of everything non-meaningful to make room for awareness of everything that *is* meaningful. Watching a television show to distract, non-meaningful; watching a sunset and noticing the reds and purples and golds in the sky, as if each ray and cloud were a gift and sign from beyond… more meaningful than words.

  2. Cyndi Kershner

    something new has definitely been born in me, although I feel like the cycles of burning and renewing keep coming. i am also so much more emphathetic to others suffering. I don’t know if theres any other way in life to get this empathy and compassion other than going through the fire of grief and loss. Thanks for the lovely post!

  3. Kathy

    Beautiful post. My mom’s death has changed me in so many ways. I feel like I am growing as I heal and figuring out who I am. Grief will always come in and out of my life, my heart, but with it good things can also happen.


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