Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bury grief, plant a seed

Today I was driving around, running errands just to keep busy. I needed distraction, something, anything to keep me from spending the day with either tears or doughnuts or both. Lynne Rossetto Kasper was doing her food show on the radio. I love her show and hoped she would inspire me to go home and cook something fabulous. But I only caught the show near the end of an interview about a seed distribution program for farmers in Iraq. In closing the show, she quoted an old German proverb: To bury grief, plant a seed.

At first I was disappointed that I had missed my usual food inspiration. But the quote was simple enough to remember and, since I was coping (or not coping) with too much grief, it sunk in to my muddled brain. Grief, I thought. Yes, I need to bury grief. I need to go on, to live, to find hope. Perhaps I need to plant a seed. So I did get another kind of inspiration, just not what I expected.

Now this seed could be a real seed—like I could work on my garden, but it’s too cold and I’m moving on to the metaphorical seed concept. I’m deep in to the grieving now but I know that that eventually I’ll exit this version of hell. Life springs from death. Growth can follow intense sorrow. Kindness, patience, compassion, love . . . perhaps all of these can become more sacred when we realize how easily life can slip away. I’ll catch my breath, pray, and believe that with faith the sorrow can be transformed into joyful regeneration. And I’m going to buy some packets of seeds just to remind me that I need to sow some seeds of joy.

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