Make Space For Stories
People carry impossible pains
There are losses that can’t be spoken
My vacancies are occupied in other lives
Yet the spot where I feel full
Remains empty for someone else
To just be aware and able
To tell my own stories
Lay out my own bloody burdens
Is not enough if I cannot
Safeguard that space for others
I don’t have to match your experiences to see you. You don’t have to know the same sort of losses I’ve had to hear me. We don’t have to do anything at all, really. We can traipse through life in a parallel way.
But if we want to build and maintain connection, we’re gonna need to use empathy. And that means looking within ourselves when someone is sharing their story. It means locating a shared feeling, some common humanity. It means sitting, often silently, setting our own pain aside, so we might bear that of those we love. And it means speaking, often shakily, our own story, so those we love might share the yoke.
If we can make space for stories, our own, and those of others, we will have created a most sacred connection. In that connection, we can heal. With empathy, we can all heal.