The life cycle of the butterfly speaks volumes about the process of grief. The life of the butterfly begins inside a cocoon, hanging inconspicuously from the limb of a tree.

Silently, but deliberately the transformation begins. Anyone looking from below would have no idea what is going on inside this tiny cocoon, but the process is truly miraculous.
In essence, there is a dissolving of one form and the emergence of another form. The cocoon starts to break open when the growth of the butterfly can no longer be contained within the protective shell of the cocoon.

Grief often begins within a cocoon of self-protection. There is some comfort in the darkness within this self-imposed cocoon. And this comfortable darkness allows for rest and renewal and remembrance.

The time within the cocoon of grief varies for each griever. But the inevitability of emergence from the cocoon is the hope of all who find themselves cloaked in this protective darkness.

As with the butterfly, it takes action and perseverance for the griever to emerge from the safety of sadness. It takes courage to let the light of life shine upon who you have now become.

To move beyond grief is a natural process. Just as the butterfly follows the rhythms of its natural process to emerge from the cocoon, grievers can take action steps to emerge from their grief and enter into the life of possibility that awaits.

Author's Bio: 

Sandy Clendenen lost her husband and best friend in 1999, after twenty-one years of marriage. Her grief process was lengthy and complex. Sandy felt stuck in layers of unresolved grief. As part of her heaing, Sandy filled numerous journals with her thoughts and feelings. A review of these journals several years later revealed insights into the grief process which Sandy is now committed to sharing with other grievers. Sandy attended seminary for 3 years. She also received her Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology. Sandy has also worked in various areas of hands on healing. Sandy incorporates her vast personal experience and education into her grief coaching products and services.

Additional Resources covering Grief and Bereavement can be found at:

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Sandy Clendenen is The Official Guide to Grief and Bereavement.