It’s the Christmas season and one that is filled with hope and joy. It really is. But for many of us, the joyousness highlights the fact that we are broken. That we are walking around with a broken heart.
I realise that this probably makes many people uncomfortable. But there it is. Christmas seems to have brought memory upon memory of what we had and what was. Christmas, like every single other event and celebration had my parents at the centre of it. They were people that knew how to celebrate and growing up we left cookies and a beer for father Christmas every single Christmas Eve. And would wake up to reindeer prints (in flour aka snow) on the path outside and half eaten mince pies and beer along with a bulging pillowcase of present love. It was magical in every sense.
Then they both had the temerity to be dying right around Christmas and with treatments, hospice, pain and diagnosis, ruined the months from November to February for us. It was funny in the darkest sense- seeing humour in this was one of the ways we coped. And there’s no going back, no regaining what we had. So here I am once again, walking around the week before Christmas with a hole in my heart that nothing can fill. I miss them so damn much.
And I know I am not the only one.
Whether it’s the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a relationship, or the first Christmas alone in what ever sense, there are so many people are walking around with broken hearts.
I have learnt enough over the last 2 years to know that grief cannot be rushed. Once again this week I had someone tell me how they think I should be “doing” grief. How I should be less fearful, live more in the moment, let things go…basically move on. Having a broken heart makes people uncomfortable, especially at this time of the year. But it is like the tide- how can you fight with the sea? The tides comes in and is overwhelming and then recedes and is bearable. It then rushes in again- it is the tide and how do you stop it?
So I have been thinking. I can’t be the only person who is dealing with this. I know I am not. So while there are many things you can do, I thought I would share how I use my oils. And how they help me…
There is nothing that can change the situation you are in. Death of a person or a relationship is pretty final (understatement of the year). So the first thing that is needed is comfort. Those of us in this situation know deep down that no word or action can change how we feel. Learning to live with a broken heart and letting it be goes against our “fix it/ no pain” culture. But trying to rush through grief does not work, in my view.
Geranium is THE oil for a broken heart. It’s the Oil of Love and Trust and helps the heart see that there is yet good in the world. It is very comforting….but very strong smelling. Combining Geranium with Frankincense is beautiful- a ratio of 3 drop of Frankincense to 1 drop of Geranium. Frankincense is a healer oil in every sense and is balm for the broken hearted. It’s the Oil of Truth and connects us with the Divine.
I can’t go past my old favourites here. They have been lifesavers for me over the last 4 years and continue to speak to me. The Calming Blend (or now the Sleep Blend) of Serenity, also called Lavender Peace. This blend combined with the Grounding Blend, Balance brings peace and calm to the troubled soul. I have a roller ball of these two oil living in a my handbag and I use them constantly. They are a power duo for emotional peace.
There comes a time when we need to process what has happened and start to release the emotional pain. Cypress is incredible for this. It is a powerful oil so use slowly and with caution. It is the Oil of Motion & Flow and will help to start to stir the emotional pot. Do not use Cypress until you feel ready. Combining Cypress with Helichrysum will help to process the emotional pain and remove it. Helichrysum is the Oil for Pain and gives strength and endurance to the wounded heart. Helichrysum offers hope.
We are into the second Christmas without my parents. We are slowly starting to make a “new normal” and finding new traditions and ways of doing things. It still hurts but we are slowly emerging on the other side. The healing feels slow but sure and part of this is not rushing through the process. And in actual fact I hope my heart never heals completely.
I love the Japanese art of Kintsugi- where the imperfections and broken-ness adds strength and beauty. The pieces of broken pottery are welded back together with gold which highlights the fact that the piece was broken. My broken heart is proof that I loved well. I was loved by my parents and I loved them. Their loss has marked me and that’s ok.
If you are broken hearted this Christmas, you are not alone. There are many, many of us. My hope is that in this season of joy you are able to find comfort and peace, and little bits of joy in the most unexpected places.
Peace be to you.