Two Sides of Gratitude: Mourning and Celebration
by David Weinstock
In one of my evening classes on Embodying Nonviolent Communication, we explored self-empathy within the Spiral Blend practice, (https://youtu.be/UTPgJQQBjDML), a somatic map of NVC. I spoke about the healing that comes through mourning and celebration. I explained that we celebrate when there is someone or something present in our lives that we love and this is a sweet feeling. Mourning is when we express the sadness and pain that we feel when we love something or someone that we miss. They are both gratitude.
As we resumed the practice, I noticed that the woman sitting next to me was quietly weeping. I asked her what was going on for her. She replied that she was feeling sad about a dear friend of hers that had died. She explained how reframing grief as gratitude had freed her from the notion that she should be suppressing her emotions. She said that until now she did not know what to do with her pain. Realizing that her tears were just a deep gratitude for the beautiful friendship that she was now missing, she said, “my tears are no longer something I need to hide away, instead they are here to fully honor and appreciate my friend who is no longer with me.”
I asked her how she was feeling now. She wept for a moment more and then with a gentle smile said, “I feel good. This feels right.”