Joy doesn’t come from the absence of misery or difficulty, it often arises despite it. It can come from acknowledging reality without grasping and causing more suffering and allowing what is happening to just be. As well, trusting your intuition and moving through adverse times gently and with deep reverence for what you are being guided towards can lead to retrospective discoveries of gratitude and joy.
Some of my most joyful moments lately have come from a prior space of horrible loss. I lost my baby a few weeks ago. It was and still is devastating, but I have slowly been able to pick out some moments of deep gratitude and overwhelming joy. To be clear, initially there was no joy or gratitude. At. All. Only blinding grief. However, in retrospect, the grieving process has forced me to confront greater truths about myself, who I am, and why I am here. I have also found deep connection with my husband and daughter. We went for walks and had conversations that soothed some of my most painful wounds I needed to begin to heal. There is joy there.
My process also led me to step back from interacting with people outside of my home. The silence and space allowed me to experience everything I needed without adding unnecessary expenditures of my extremely limited energy. The process is ongoing, but I feel joy in my new knowledge that I can trust the people in my life to allow me to experience loss in the way I absolutely require to move forward. This is freedom that I have never felt so acutely before.
This is not to dismiss the deep pain I still feel, but the grace I have discovered during this time through allowing myself to grieve has led to deeper connection within and out which has, in turn, led to more poignant moments of joy. There has been so much sorrow, but through it all I am slowly able to discover more and more joy right in front of and within me.