We live in a world that sends us wrong minded messages: That we are entitled to "be happy" all the time and that we should rarely, if ever, feel grief or sadness.
We are judged for feeling grief, as if you're there's something wrong with us when we lose a Beloved one.
We are pushed to "get over" or "move past" the loss of those we love and miss.
Yet there are some losses for which there is no end point, some griefs that - like love - endure beyond the realm of this material world.
It's time for our culture to grow up about emotions, to stop treating normal human emotions, especially grief, as aberrant, pathological and wrong.
We can begin, as a collective culture, by accepting our own authentically painful emotions, and then we can move toward treating others' emotions with tenderness.
Emotional equanimity means accepting whatever emotions we - and others feel - and meeting this pain with tenderness and compassion not disregarding or dismissing them.
And we, ourselves, can practice this: We may start by refusing to allow others to judge and shame how we feel. We need not meet such judgment with anger: Simply, with gentle strength, "This is my truth, and I stand in it."
If you are living grief, you are a warrior, even on days when you don't feel like one. Feeling is a superpower, especially in a world where we may be seduced by drugs, alcohol, TV, consumerism, gambling, food, and other mind and heart numbing distractions that take us away from what we really feel.
When we feel deeply, all our emotions not just the "feel good" ones, and treat both our smiles and tears with the same open-hearted-kindness, our lives slowly but dramatically change, and we come to know our true selves.
What a superpower gift we give to ourselves.
And when we practice being with our emotions honestly, we can occupy space with others honestly. What a superpower gift we offer to others.
Read more about becoming emotionally equanimous in my new book, now available here.