A few weeks ago my brother shared some insight with me about mourning that I found to be very helpful.
I read a book called "Tear Soup" that was so full of warmth and understanding. It put into words perfectly the way that I have felt through many of the differnt emotions and stages of greif. It compares this process to one of making 'tear soup'. It relates that most people are willing to share in one cup of our tear soup. When a tragedy occurs, people want to help in that moment. But, as life would have it, most people are so busy with life, and carrying their own burdens that they move on quickly and don't find it appetizing to consume more than a cup. However, as the books states, and as I have found, there are people who are willing to share in more than a cup of my soup. In fact, there are a few people who have probably had a full pot of it! They have a desire to sit down at my table of greif and partake of my soup when I need to share it. They are those who truly "mourn" with me. Jed shed some light on the difference between grieving and mourning:
The dictionary states: To Grieve is to suffer and endure anguish ALONE. To Mourn is to feel deep sorrow, sadness, and regret, but to be "more public" to share it with others, to not let it stew and grow toxic by keeping it inside.
In 3 Nephi chapter 12 Christ is teaching the people the beattitudes and verse 4 says "And again, blessed are those that mourn, for they shall be comforted."
...as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort,...
I don't think the order of the words in these scriptures are coinsidence. For as I have found, when people are willing to take more than a cup of my soup and mourn with me, I inturn find comfort and my heart finds peace.
In the process of making my soup those first few weeks my pot was filled as tears flowed, questions of doubt were asked, pain clouded my vision, my heartstrings were wrenched, and my soul felt empty. The beginnings of my soup were personal and could only be prepared by me.
However, it was through the taste-tasting of my soup that I first realized my soup was becoming very bitter and hard to get down. I new I couldn't stop making my soup and let is simmer as it was. If that I happened, I knew my soup would eventually be scorched and I wouldn't be able to tolerate it all.
I began to find glimpses of an eternal perspective, and spoonfulls of peace as I realized that it was in the sharing of this soup with others that I'm able to learn and grow...that I am able to go back to my pot and add new ingredients to my soup to make it more sweet. A tablespoon of patience, a cup of understanding, a dash of other's tears, a quart of love, and a handful of joy.
I have learned from all different types of chefs. There are those who have shared parts of their recipe with me because they are making a similar soup, just farther along in their cook time. There are cooks that started their soup around the same time I did, and we're learning together. There are cooks that have made soups from completely different recipes that are willing to share some of their secret ingredients with me. And there are those chefs who have almost perfected their soups that are patient as I ask them for guidance. Every type of chef has something to offer.
I continue to revise my soup, and some days when I taste it I still find it bitter, but I guess my recipe is becoming more balanced because somedays it is especially sweet and enjoyable.
My heart is full of gratitude to those that have lent a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, and a hug. I have learned so much much by the wisdom others have shared and the examples of those I love. Thank you to those who have contributed to my soup, and who are willing to partake of more than a cup.
It is my hope that I'll be able to share parts of my recipe with others...that someday I can contribute some sweetness to another's pot. It is in this process that we do as the Savior has asked: mourn with those that mourn, and comort those who stand in need of comfort!
I can't wait for the day that I get to share my completed soup with Branson. I hope by then that I'll have perfected my recipe, and that as we share the soup we will be "filled" with joy!