I just came across your writing while

Google searching “intense joy followed by grief”. I was hit with my emotions today while at the movies with my family. (Frozen sing a long) During the big hit song in the middle of the movie, Elsa starts singing Let it Go and the lights come up in the Tampa theatre and there is snow falling all around. You could feel how exciting that was for all the kids and families there. And in that moment I was so intensely happy and at the same time brought to tears and feeling the weight of losing my mother 8 months ago.

I’ve had this specific feeling of intense happiness and then that feeling of grief twice now so was just looking to see if there is a name for this or maybe just to connect with experiences of others. But now that I’m here I feel some kinship in both our Pennsylvania heritage and losing a mother to cancer in a hospice bed it sounds like. The club none of us want to be in… So I guess for now I’ll let it go…

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This is what I think is an important take-away:

It’s not just a feel-good thing to experience happiness and joy in the midst of loss and grief, it’s actually part of how you heal your life.

Like other traumatic experiences, we carry our losses and hold our grief not only in our minds and emotions, but also within our animal body, that is, physically.

We are not just parts, we’re whole beings in which thoughts, emotions, physical sensations, and spiritual orientations constantly interact with each other to keep us going from breath to breath, moment to moment.

If you stay too long in pain and despair without allowing happy moments and tapping into your store of inner joy regularly, you can actually change your neurochemistry and biology in non-life-supporting ways.

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“You are also your own personal planet.” I love this so much 💞 I also really agree that these two facets of life are deeply entwined. The more we lean into our one little [very brief] life, the more we can embrace it, accept it, and be moved by it. Lovely exploration of this truth!

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