Grief is everywhere right now. Mass attacks across the globe. Black men being shot for complying with police, Black men being shot for not complying. White people waking up to unjust systems, having been asleep at the wheel for generations.
A lot of us don't make room for processing our grief. We want to - or are taught to - keep it away, sweep it under the rug, or stuff it down. We're taught, and believe, that being vulnerable is a sign of weakness, and weakness will make us susceptible to more pain and sorrow.
Without the vulnerability to mourn, to be seen in our pain, grief can turn into a monster that eats us alive. This is true for all our feelings, if we don't give them enough light and air. They will mutate and take over before we build enough strength to harness their power and let them guide us to resilience and growth.
But if we give it room, grief can also compel us to grow, to fight, to get aggressive against injustice. It can help us use our privileges and our power, even when we feel helpless, to connect with our community, talk back to the powers that be, and fight for "liberty and justice for all."
If you have lost a loved one to death, you might be interested in a new 8-week group I am starting in the fall called "Living Through Grief." This group will offer a container to bring your grief, mourning, and your complexity of experience and feelings about the death of a loved one. Visit my website or email me for more information.
Other resources for grieving and self-care during times of racism and emotional overload: