The body remembers

Emotions are remembered by the body, often before you register the day or date. Grief has that impact on me. Especially when it relates to loved ones. When I am upset, I tend to hold grief in my upper back, my upper back has a dull ache that stretching and yoga doesn’t relieve. This happens on two anniversaries for people who have passed and are dear to me. They are still recent for me – 2.5 years and 6 years ago. One is the death of a dear uncle and the other is the death of my beloved grandmother. Both had a momentous impact on me, not great but momentous. My grandmother’s death resulted in being diagnosed with depression. My uncle’s death, even though expected, was just as difficult when it occurred. Thinking about either can still trigger tears and feelings of sadness, amongst love, cherished memories and happier times. This year, the anniversary of my Uncle’s death did not coincide with Easter as it occurred earlier this year. Easter is often a reminder of his passing and can still be difficult to enjoy. This year, the anniversary of his death was a week later. The day before, I started to feel very tired in the early afternoon so decided to get to bed a little earlier. The next morning I woke up at 3am, unable to get back to sleep. I got out of bed by about 4am and did some yoga – deep stretching as my upper back was aching. Later that morning, as I was getting my breakfast ready, I saw the date and then it hit me. My body had remembered before my brain had registered the date. I sent a quick message to my Aunty to let her know I was thinking of her and continued to make my breakfast.

When I see butterflies that are large and colourful, they remind me of my uncle because he had suggested we go to the Butterfly House in Melbourne Zoo when we were visiting one year. We did go and had a wonderful time, with many butterflies landing on my daughter and I and remaining for quite some time. Especially on my daughter, we had to carefully lift one off her and place it onto a tree branch because it seemed like it had found a place to perch and stay. On the anniversary of my Uncle’s death this year, I saw a beautiful black butterfly with bright blue on its wings. It fluttered and stayed in sight at waist level before slowly flying up and away. I felt that was my Uncle’s spirit visiting and passing by. It made my heart lighter and was a nice distraction for a fleeting moment. There are many stories that state butterflies and dragonflies are often reminders of loved ones who have passed. The synchronicities of these reminders are often significant. I emailed my Aunty that evening to advise her what I saw during the day and said I felt it was my uncle’s spirit. She agreed and said he visits those who loved him. I find these moments reassuring and help to lighten the grief. Everyone feels grief and is impacted by it differently. As I have said previously, it doesn’t mean one way is right or wrong, just different. And different is okay. I hope you have moments of sunshine during periods of grief or sadness. We need to have the rain to see the rainbows, sadness to know happiness and pain to know comfort. I hope this provides a little comfort to anyone who is experiencing grief. Please remember to reach out and ask for help from people around you or organisations who can help you manage your grief. It helps to have people who genuinely care about you and are happy when you are, or at least help you manage your pain until you can feel hopeful again. Hold onto those people, they are your people – who bring the sunshine to you. They help you to Laugh.Love.Live and are priceless. Peace and blessings, stay safe and well!

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