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“He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words.” Elbert Hubbard. October 22, 2009

Posted by johnbohlinger in Dealing with Grief after Losing your child., Death of your child, Grieving Parents.


developing drummer

I understand the importance of talking through one’s feelings.  I can see the benefits of a cathartic conversation. But sometimes I don’t want to hear what anybody has to say about grief, life, death, and recovery.   I’m pretty sure I’ve already heard more or less all of it.  I understand the whole mess intellectually, but I can’t make peace with it emotionally.   It’s commonly believed that one reaches an emotional understanding by talking over one’s feelings, but often I don’t want to talk about how I feel;  my words sound cliche or scripted and they don’t really convey what I feel.    That’s when I crave silence, but that can be difficult to find.

Grieving people often find themselves victims of well intentioned  friends who feel they can dialogue us out of our grief and depression, so we usually humor them;  say what we think they want us to say and usually feel even worse after their “cheering up”.  This is why caller I.D. is one of the greatest inventions of our modern world.

When you don’t want to talk, don’t.  Give yourself a break.  Hide from everybody if you need to and let your mind and body rest.  After going through what we’ve been through,  you don’t have to be strong or “on” all the time.

“Be still, and know that I am God”
(Psalm 46:10).

What ever your spiritual leanings,  this is a bit of advice that may be worth adopting.   Here, “be still” comes from the Hebrew term “raphah”.  According to Jason Jackson *  “raphah” refers to that which is slack,… or to be disheartened or to be weak.

I’ve never really understood this before but now it seems pretty clear that Psalm advices that we need to shut down at certain times in our lives,  like after suffering such a terrible loss.  So maybe we should allow our bodies, minds and spirits to go slack at times, accept our weakness and rest.  If you are the spiritual type,  rest and know that God is out there.

Tonight I’m not answering my phone nor reading emails nor letters.  I have the entire Third Season of 30 rock on DVD and I’m going to be very still on my couch and watch episode after episode until I pass out.  The only sound I will make will be giggling and chewing on food.

*      Be Still and Know that I Am God By JASON JACKSON  February 27, 2006



1. Faye Combs - October 23, 2009

I have been going through this grief thing now for over 10 years, and in the past 2 or 3 at least, I have found myself doing something kind of interesting when someone wants to talk about it. I can almost feel myself split. It’s like I become the very matter of fact person and the other one is the emotional one standing over in the corner watching without having to participate. I usually do this when someone asks me what happened to my son. I give them a matter of fact blow by blow of the whole miserable scenario while my grief stricken self looks on. I know it sounds weird, but it works for me.

2. me - October 23, 2009

Yes! Do not eat too much!

3. Faye Combs - October 23, 2009

I did get that, and it was really funny. It’s nice when we can do that – see the humor in something, share it and make the other grieving person laugh. Thanks for being so special. That is what I consider a real support group to be – a group of grieving or hurting people who do their best to support and lift each other up.

4. Roberts Mom Linda - October 23, 2009

I really don’t answer my home phone anymore I just screen my calls by the answering machine and if I want to call them back I do. My cell phone is my #1 and I do use the caller ID all of the time allot of people I just let leave a message, I answer for few. At times I do realize how I cut myself off from people but I think I am just in survival mode. I know it is sad but it is my Mom who usually always will blurt out the wrong thing with the best of intentions. I can’t stand the silence to me silence is deafening. I keep a TV on at all times just so I have noise in the house, because when it is quiet I start with the what ifs. People tell me I am strong all of the time. It doesn’t bother me I just think are you blind. 99% of the time I am on the floor emotionally I guess I am a good actor there are days when I have to practice smiling before I walk into Walmart but people don’t see that side. Tonight enjoy and God Bless

5. me - October 25, 2009

Check my blog, John. Today was a good day for your beautiful song. Thanks.

6. hi john - November 3, 2009

hola juan

7. Michael - February 9, 2010

Reading Bhagwn, aka Osho is like having a lobotomy. I normally prefer not to suggest him. A lot like bonding with Icarus.

Perhaps some on this forum may find peace with some of his literature. He is appealing to very high intellectuals. Tons of contradictions.

I remember Johny Carson doing a bit on his show singing “Bye, bye Bhagwan!” to the tune of Bye Bye Blackbird.


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