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How Do We Go On?

This is the question that grief asks. This is the question we ask when something happens to us that will change us forever.

How do we go on when we want to let go of something and never have it come back-but it does? How do we go on when we have lost parts of our world but the memory is still a part of us? Perhaps we can't even accept the loss and so we hold onto these things like ghosts.

This season is here to remind us that while loss feels permanent it is really transition. Death comes to remind us that life is to be lived fully and all things transition eventually. How do we go on can become how to we change our relationship with what we lost?

The energy of this season reminds us that so much of what we try to let go of actually isn't something to cut off and never come back (is this why the monster always comes back in horror movies-to teach us that???) It is a part of us that we must integrate in order to grow.

The emotions or parts that while we might want them to go away forever actually are important teachers for us. Resentment and disappointment often come up for people as emotions we would rather bury and never have them come back. So how do we go on?

It's in this spirit we’re going to write a calaveras literaria or a literary calavera. Calavera is skull in Spanish and also is a reference to eulogies written to people who were still alive as a satire. To support us in going deeper we're going to change our calaveras a little to think about the parts of ourselves, emotions that always come up, or habits we have that we want to change our relationship with (yes this is the theme for the year).

Find your comfortable space with your creative supplies and reflect on what what transition might look like for you.

Write your own calavera literaria. Choose an emotion or something else in your life you feel like keeps coming back. It might be a habit or personality trait you would like to change your relationship with.

Choose your topic. Imagine your topic has died. Who was your emotion in life? What did they do? Did they have a job? How did they live in your world? How did they impact you?

Imagine them meeting La Muerte or Death. How did they die? What kind of ancestor will they become? How will they stay connected to you? How might their style change after they die?

You can make your calaveras funny or serious. Laughter is my favorite way to process grief. It can be a poem and rhyme or be a story or drawing. Use this practice to help you sit with how will your emotion or part will transition and what your relationship will be like with it.

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