Every time I think about dancing I think of happy times, like dancing with my husband at our wedding. Or the fun times I had as a young girl attending the Friday night dances at church. But did you ever equate dancing with grief? I didn’t until recently.
While watching an awards show on television I was mesmerized by one artist’s incredible dance routine. Each move, every footstep was carefully choreographed. When all of sudden as he was gliding along with these smooth moves, out of nowhere he suddenly jumped into the air then tumbled down onto the floor. His body began making these jerky motions as everyone else began following him across the stage. I was left wondering what the heck just happened?!
His dance moves were much like the dance of grief. Up one minute gliding along smoothly, when in the next moment we find ourselves upside down in a heap on the floor. Depending on where you are on your journey grieving sure can resemble a dance, albeit not a carefully choreographed one either.
Since Melanie ran ahead to heaven I am grateful for the smooth, easy going days I have. Then, there have been days when I’ve felt like I’m twirling around on my head; not knowing which way to turn or how to get off this spinning hamster wheel of sadness.
Not only can every day be different, but moments throughout each day can vary. Maybe you’ve found yourself gliding along just like a ballerina, having a perfectly fine day when out of nowhere something triggers you and you find yourself on the floor, like the break dancer.
Just like dancing, there are so many rhythms to this journey. Oh, how we wish for a regular cadence to the dance. Instead, many times we are left with a booming staccato one moment, and a quiet interlude of waterscapes the next.
Friends, grief has its very own timetable. There is no set schedule and although we are told there are stages to grief, it’s important to realize you may visit and then re-visit some of the stages. It doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you – this is the dance of grief.
Grief brings with it all the feels – anger, loneliness, anxiety, blame, regret, questioning God. These may not be the official stages of grief, but they are all stages nonetheless.
Time doesn’t heal all wounds, but it’s important to know that as time moves forward the ache isn’t as sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel. Allow yourself to feel what you feel. It is part of the healing process.
Should the dance becomes too hard, I encourage you to reach out to a grief counselor or a trusted friend who will listen. No one can take our grief away but there are those who will listen and sit with you in your grief.
Remember, grief is a reminder that you have lost someone you loved so very much. It takes time to heal the heart but healing will come.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds Psalm 147:3 NIV