Digest articles are due at the beginning of the previous month. Today is Monday, December 3, two weeks after Thanksgiving and three weeks before Christmas. I’m thinking about all the people crying in our sanctuary on Saturday. We especially feel the pain of our grief during our first holidays without the person we love.

Winter might be the best time to let the inevitable waves of grief come over us. This is the time when we have “permission” to do less because the weather is working against us. Most of us no longer have to “do chores and feed the animals” before school or carry in wood to keep the fires burning to heat the house.


Instead, we have time to take a long walk as the sun reflects on the sparkling snow, peek behind naked trees, and see something new. It’s time to take a much needed nap or go to bed early and let our body rest from the emotional upheaval we have experienced.

Winter can be the time to sit in the space of grief and allow ourselves to feel and heal. But it’s not always a peaceful sitting. We feel the aches and pains in our own body. We notice the shorter days that can still seem so long. We may sit anxiously and then realize that our anxiety is grief in its truest form. It never looks, acts, or feels the way we think it will. Sometimes it’s peaceful, sometimes it’s sorrowful, sometimes it’s gut-wrenching, and most times it’s unexpected.

The absence of light is a necessary part of our earth’s time of rest and renewal. Can you allow yourself the same luxury of rest and renewal this winter?

She sits, she waits, she is grief. A poem…

She Waits

She’s everywhere, waiting
for her moment.

The moment when you
are most vulnerable.

She lurks in the
shadows and waits.

She hides in every fiber,
every cell of your being.

In the mind she caresses
the landscape of every peak and valley.

She waits.

She calls on you when you
least expect it and without a
moments thought you respond.

The tears flow, the heart
aches, the body remembers.

You sit, numb, tired, exhausted
unaware of her presence.

You wonder.

You question your sanity.

Your mind has lost its memory.

Tasks seem more complicated.

Your body acts as if you’ve just
Gotten off a roller coaster…
Spinning, heart racing, confused.

She sits.

She waits.

She knows there’s more.

She is grief.

- JoDee Coulter