“Autumn is the time when the trees teach us to let go”
The leaves turn from gold to brown and fall to the earth as the year surrenders its vitality. And with this time has come the Queen’s death. I”m hearing many people say how surprised they are at the intensity of their sorrow.
Autumn time, holistically, is about “letting go” and the lungs. The lungs also link with sorrow and grief. With the British “stiff upper lip”, we’re not renowned for showing our feelings and expressing grief. Statements such as “the show must go on” or “put on a brave face” often minimise normal feelings. An internal message is sent to hold on, that feelings aren’t necessary or that we are weak for having a natural, caring response.
Hiding Our Emotions
We try to hide sadness with “I’m fine”, but suppressing our feelings can be challenging to vital health. If we don’t express our emotions, what happens to them? How does it affect our physical body? Where does that tension go? Do the feelings get pushed back down, suppressed, in that “gulping” moment? Many of us aren’t good at letting go (unless alcohol is involved!).
We may not have learnt that it’s OK to not be OK. And we may find we hide our emotions with food, numb painful feelings with alcohol or appease them with drugs. We tell ourselves to “just get on”, to survive, just to get through. We may need to arrange a funeral to “be the strong one”, but where does that bypassed grief go? What happens as we get on with our lives? Human “beings” find it hard to “just be” and instead get on with human “doingness”. But in doing mode, we don”t allow ourselves to feel, which can then get stored as physical tension and “dis-ease”.
“Turn a blind eye”, “sweep it under the carpet!” And like a shaken bottle of pop, the pressure builds over time. The top may blow, or the gas, like a tear, may escape. Past grief can “piggyback” on current suffering. Hence unresolved, unprocessed grief creeping out in present situations. There may be genuine sadness for the Queen”s death and her family, but it may also trigger our own losses. Past grief takes the opportunity to flow out as the present gateway opens.
Holistically, we see this release as a healthy expression. Held tension can physically soften as we relax and feel better after a good cry. If you have found yourself in a place of letting go, WELL DONE, be kind and have compassion for yourself as you would for a friend. And as the leaves die and fall to the earth to be composted and recycled, so do our emotions. The sap falls back down into the stillness of winter and we may find peace as the seasons unfold if we can accept the ebb and flow of our own emotions within our inner landscape.
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