We want to be close but we know how dangerous it is to be close. In the balance between being connected and being separated, we put up boundaries to maintain separation; because when we offer love and support the other has the option to say they don’t want it.
We are two separate entities in the world, and we know losing the other is going to hurt. When we are bound to another, if they die, we die. Survival demands that we separate.
We can all run away from each other, or we can run towards and try to console each other.
At times we make up for lost years spent apart, and put out the flame of pain and separation through simply setting it aside. A little bit of joy can change everything.
When we have a balance of pain and joy, the pain that comes along is not overwhelming. It doesn’t mean that we avoid the pain, but the affect becomes softer. Perhaps we return to someone we have lost and suddenly discover all of the things we had with them, and notice that those things still exist. We still have them. We may have lost the person but we have pieces of joy inside us as we remember the past, and we soothe ourselves with that joy.
It is magical how this structure comes together, and we see it happen around great pain, during periods of separation, or in times of danger.
In many cultures, funerals are safe places to express affection we have for the departed that we may have been afraid to fully express in life in the danger of being close. In that safety we say, “Yes”.
Consolation springs out of our shared experience, and everyone takes on a share of the pain.