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The Garden of Sadness

Posted by Simon Parke, 15 July 2021, 3.20pm

The Garden of Sadness is not a place anyone wants to go.

We’d prefer to be happy than sad, and so we try and avoid it.

Perhaps we feel we have to keep up a brave face for the sake of others; or maybe we just cannot admit the feeling to ourselves.

‘My anger has hidden my sadness for a long time,’ someone told me recently.

And we may feel bad about going to the Garden of Sadness.

Some of us, when young, were told, ‘Oh, that’s nothing to cry about!’ which can prove disabling if it closes us down to our true feelings.

Everyone has to go to the Garden of Sadness sometimes, because there’s so much loss in life – whether it’s a person, a hope, a relationship, an injury, an illness or a dream.

Some avoid it by saying ‘Oh, there are people in the world worse off than me! What have I got to complain about?!’

But we’ll be more creative in the world, more adaptive and kinder, if we look after our feelings, for no one else can.

Maybe the little you is still crying; maybe their feelings were gagged.

So we allow ourselves to visit the Garden of Sadness. We push open the gate and sit there a while, and allow ourselves to feel what we feel.

No one can judge a feeling…so we won’t.

Perhaps we’ll plant one or two seeds there; there is beauty here. And then, when we’re ready, we’ll leave by a different gate.

Here is a place of strange healing, a garden to pass through on our way back to health and happiness.

We’ll live it in our own time and in our own way…

...and find the Garden of Sadness, so often avoided, is, indeed, a Garden of Hope.

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