The importance of grief rituals.

Are you moving through a time of grief, loss, breakup or letting go?

Do you find yourself numbing the pain and sadness?

With food, chocolate, alcohol, drugs, sex, shopping…..  Trying to numb the pain rather than feeling it?

This is exactly what we are discussing in this blog.

We live in a world that teaches us to shut down and ignore the sadness that lives inside of us. To numb ourselves with food and alcohol so that we don’t feel what is truly inside of us. I come from a family of “numb-ers” so I know this only too well. As a Feminine Embodiment Coach, Somatic Womb Healer and Yoga teacher, I have spent many years now getting in touch with my body and I’m feeling the importance of grief rituals more and more. Read on…

Woman navigating life's transitions

We are taught to NOT feel or honour our grief.

We live in a world that teaches us to shut down and ignore the sadness that lives inside of us. To numb ourselves with food and alcohol so that we don’t feel what is truly going on. I come from a family of “numb-ers” so I know this only too well. 

As a Feminine Embodiment Coach, Somatic Womb Healer, Cyclical Living and Yoga teacher, I have spent many years getting in touch with my body; And recently, more and more I’ve been feeling the importance of grief rituals and the power of employing these practices in our daily lives. 

We hold our issues (and our grief) in our tissues.

Have you ever heard your yoga teacher say “we hold our issues in our tissues“? This is something I’ve heard many times and have frequently said myself because honestly over the years through working somatically with the trauma in my own body and with clients, I have come to understand that this statement couldn’t be more true. 

We hold our memories, our sadness, our grievances, our grief… all within the cellular structures of our bodies. It’s like our bodies are an old VHS recorder constantly in record mode and our tissues are the place of storage. We literally store “our issues in our tissues” and through somatic work we can tap into those recordings.

In his book “Waking The Tiger”, Peter Levine goes into great depth around this topic with reference to the animal kingdom, which is a great read if you want to learn more.

Why grief rituals and practices are so important.

Grief rituals are an essential part of many indigenous cultures. Many parts of Africa practice grief rituals on a regular basis but it is not something we see or are even aware of the west. It wasn’t something I was introduced to a couple of years ago when one of my teachers, Tami Lynn Kent, the author of ‘Wild Feminine’ and founder of Holistic Pelvic Care™️, spoke about it in her books and later in the courses that I took with her. 

From Tami, I learned how to work with the grief we hold in our womb space and how to release it. This is a deeply powerful and essential practice for us women because we hold so much of our grief in our pelvic bowls. Our uterine energy by its very nature draws energy in and holds it there until we consciously release it. When not released, our held grief can create all kinds of pain, sadness, heaviness and other problems in the body further emphasising the need for and the importance of grief rituals and grief releasing practices.

Yesterday evening while on a live call for the “Maiden To Mother” teacher training program I am currently participating in, I was reminded again about how our connective tissue and our cellular memory within that connective tissue also stores this grief and these layers of unacknowledged sadness… again “our issues in our tissues’. 

Somatic work is the missing piece in our healing journey.

On the call, one of our Maiden To Mother teacher trainers invited us into a grief ritual. It was an embodiment practice, inviting us to breathe and move our bodies with the intention of feeling the grief we are holding in our bodies. 

Being with the felt senses of the body is the very essence of what somatic work is. Using breath and movement to tap into the unconscious issues that are alive and present within our tissues. This is quite often the missing piece to traditional “talk therapy” which keeps us in our heads and in the “story” rather than tapping into the felt senses of the body and accessing our powerful body wisdom. The body doesn’t lie, you see which is what makes it more powerful than traditional talk therapy.

Through my work as a somatic, trauma informed embodiment coach and womb healer and my own personal practices, I have found that the gateway to the body does indeed start with the mind. The difference is however, we don’t stay there. We use the story or thought related to the story to tap into the emotion behind it. Once we have the emotion, we can access our somatic, felt senses related to that thought (or story or person or event) within the body. This is the key. This is the entrance way into the body (the soma) which is powerfully effective for healing.

Accessing the grief in the body.

Even though we were not guided there by the teacher leading this grief ritual, I knew from experience that to effectively start this grief releasing practice, I needed a thought to awaken the felt sense of the grief within my body.

This was easy as I had lost a beloved pet 7 months before and the pain of his loss was still very present within me. Picturing my boy, I felt the sting of grief and sadness arise in my body. I started to feel sore and tight all around my neck and shoulders. I began to hug myself as though hugging a child and to massage this tension I was feeling while tears started rolling from my eyes. 

I reached my arms behind my back and began massaging the knots that presented themselves around my shoulders and neck. As I did this, different thoughts started to roll over my mind, all things I felt sad about and that I wanted to let go or stop doing. Feeling disliked by others. Not having yet achieved what I wanted with my business. Judgements about my body. Not being able to just stop and rest fully, always being busy. “Wow…”I thought… “Every knot in my back tells a story”. 

Side note: As I reflect on this now, I see so clearly that these were all wounded “Maiden” thoughts, unconscious deeper layers to this Maiden to Mother work. Thoughts that were present beneath the surface of my skin waiting to be felt, heard, met.

This grief ritual practice is similar in many ways to my own practice – MOTHER – which you can access for free below.

Body, please show me more

Grabbing my journal and my pen. I asked “Body, please show me more” I continued to hug and massage and began moving my body “What else is here? What sadness are you holding?” I asked. Tears still streaming down my face, the sadness bubbled up one by one. 

  • Sadness to not have free time.
  • Sadness for being so busy all the time with work, training, coaching.
  • Sad for the seriousness of the day.
  • Sad for not spending more time with my husband, family, friends.
  • Sad for being an absent friend. 
  • Sad for every knot of tension in my body.
  • Sad that I’m numbing something and I’m not sure what.
  • Sad that I am trying to prove something and I don’t know what.
  • Proving that I am worthy to do this work.
  • Sad to be a patriarchal perfectionist who doesnt feel good enough to do this work.
  • Sad for being sad.
  • Sad that I don’t have a stable life. 
  • Sad for my sister who passed without fully living hers.
  • Sad for my mother and what she went through.
  • Sad for my baby boy who is gone.
  • Sad for my baby girl all alone.

So much sadness that had been bubbling beneath the surface without me even realising it. So much sadness wanting to be felt and heard and released. 

Our sadness and our grief are so intertwined. We hold it in our bodies. Unconsciously. And the heaviness weighs us down unconsciously. These issues in our tissues are there unconsciously.

I hadn’t acknowledged any of these sadnesses until now. I hadn’t given voice or word or thought to their presence but acknowledging them felt good. Massaging out the knots felt good. Crying out the pain felt good. I felt tender after but I knew many things within me had moved. 

No sugary snacks or alcohol necessary.

I slept like a baby after that session. I didn’t need to eat any sugary snacks or drink any alcohol. No numbing or dumbing anything that I wasn’t aware of or giving consciousness to. 

 

I felt how much had moved in me through the light of consciousness and somatic movement. I had allowed it out and in doing so I had released myself of some of the heaviness and weight of my pain. It felt freeing and powerful and further cemented (for me personally) the importance of taking time for these grief rituals and practices.

We have been so programmed to hold it all in, to numb and dumb ourselves rather than fully feeling the depths of our pain and acknowledging the sadness we hold. Yet it is within the feeling of it that we can bring the light of conscious awareness and access true liberation.

If you are ready to release some of the heavy load of the grief and sadness you are holding and you would love to be supported by a somatic, trauma informed coach and healer, this is the work I am doing with clients in my 1-1 sessions in Womb Alchemy, to discover more see the link below.

Much love,

Niamh is a Feminine Embodiment Coach, Somatic Womb Healer, Rites of Passage & Cyclical Living Mentor & Guide, Business Doula & Yoga Teacher. Through somatic, trauma informed coaching and embodiment practices she supports Soulful women through life and business transitions. 

FOLLOW ME ON PINTEREST

Niamh helped me gain profound clarity!

I had such a deeply transformative coaching session with Niamh as she holds such a healing and unconditionally loving space. It felt like alchemy on a deep cellular level, shifting emotional blockages into profound expansion and clarity.

 

Elsa Kvarnbach

Niamh is an incredible coach!

Niamh is an incredible coach. She is dynamic, sensitive and powerful. Her efficiency and caring nature make you feel supported from the beginning. I love how easy it is to talk with her and how assertive and direct this style of coaching is.

Natalie Farrell 

Niamh truly is a conscious business midwife!

Niamh’s calming, warm, and compassionate way allowed me to safely dive deep to release blocks and worn out patterns of doing and being. She truly is a conscious business midwife!

Amy Frankel

Niamh has such a loving presence.

Niamh has such a loving presence which makes it so easy to feel safe and open up about anything that comes up in a session. I could also feel her excitement for me and my journey which inspired me to connect more deeply with my own excitement.

Lizzy Guhl

Woman navigating life's transitions

The Importance of Grief Rituals.

Are you moving through a time of grief, loss, breakup, transition or letting go?

Do you find yourself numbing the pain and sadness?

With food, chocolate, alcohol, drugs, sex, shopping…..  Trying to numb the pain rather than feeling it?

This is exactly what we are discussing in this blog.

We live in a world that teaches us to shut down and ignore the sadness that lives inside of us. To numb ourselves with food and alcohol so that we don’t feel what is truly going on with us. Keep reading…

 

We are NOT taught to feel or honour our grief.

We live in a world that teaches us to shut down and ignore the sadness that lives inside of us. To numb ourselves with food and alcohol so that we don’t feel what is truly going on. I come from a family of “numb-ers” so I know this only too well. 

As a Feminine Embodiment Coach, Somatic Womb Healer, Cyclical Living and Yoga teacher, I have spent many years getting in touch with my body; And recently, more and more I’ve been feeling the importance of grief rituals and the power of employing these practices in our daily lives. 

We hold our GRIEF in our body.

Have you ever heard your yoga teacher say “we hold our issues in our tissues“? This is something I’ve heard many times and have frequently said myself and through working somatically with the trauma in my own body and with my clients bodies, I have come to understand that this statement couldn’t be more true. 

We hold our memories, our sadness, our grievances, our grief… all within the cellular structures of our bodies. It’s like our bodies are an old VHS recorder constantly in record mode and our tissues are the place of storage. We literally store “our issues in our tissues” and through somatic work we can tap into those recordings.

In his book “Waking The Tiger”, Peter Levine goes into great depth around this topic with reference to the animal kingdom, which is a great read if you want to learn more.

 

Ready to work with the GRIEF held your body? Work with me in Womb Alchemy, see below:

This is why GRIEF rituals & practices are so important.

Grief rituals are an essential part of many indigenous cultures. Many parts of Africa practice grief rituals on a regular basis but it is not something we see or are even aware of the west.

I was first introduced to Grief Rituals a couple of years ago when one of my teachers, Tami Lynn Kent, founder of Holistic Pelvic Care™️ and the author of ‘Wild Feminine’, spoke about it in her books and later in the courses that I took with her.

From Tami, I learned how to work with the grief we hold in our womb space and how to release it, something I also support my clients with in Womb Alchemy. Releasing held grief is a deeply powerful and essential practice for us women because we hold so much of our grief in our pelvic bowls. Our uterine energy by its very nature draws energy in and holds it there until we consciously release it. When not released, our held grief can create all kinds of pain, sadness, heaviness and other problems in the body further emphasising the need for and the importance of grief rituals and grief releasing practices.

Yesterday while on a call for the Rites of Passage teacher training program I am currently moving through, I was reminded again about how our connective tissue and our cellular memory within that connective tissue stores this grief and these layers of unacknowledged sadness… again “our issues in our tissues’. 

Somatic work is the missing piece in your healing journey.

On the call, we were invited into a grief ritual. It was an embodiment practice, inviting us to breathe and move our bodies with the intention of feeling the grief we are holding in our bodies, very similarly to how I support my clients to release their held grief.

Being with the felt senses of the body is the very essence of what somatic work is. Using breath and movement to tap into the unconscious issues that are alive and present within our tissues. This is quite often the missing piece to traditional “talk therapy” which keeps us in our heads and in the “story” rather than tapping into the felt senses of the body and accessing our powerful body wisdom. The body doesn’t lie, you see which is what makes it more powerful than traditional talk therapy.

Through my work as a somatic womb healer and my own personal practices, I have found that the gateway to the body does indeed start with the mind. The difference is however, we don’t stay there. We use the story or thought related to the story to tap into the emotion behind it. Once we have the emotion, we can access our somatic, felt senses related to that thought (or story or person or event) within the body. This is the key. This is the entrance way into the body (the soma) which is powerfully effective for healing.

Accessing the grief in the body.

Dropping into the grief ritual for myself I knew that I needed a “thought” to awaken the felt sense of the grief within my body. I had lost a beloved dog 7 months before and the pain of his loss was still very present within me so I was able to bring this to mind as the key to getting into my body.

Picturing my boy, I felt the sting of grief and sadness arise in my body. I started to feel sore and tight all around my neck and shoulders. Beginning to work with the body (as we do in somatic, embodiment work) I began to hug myself as though hugging a child and to massage this tension I was feeling while tears started rolling from my eyes. 

I reached my arms behind my back and began massaging the knots that presented themselves around my shoulders and neck. As I did this, different thoughts started to roll over my mind, all things I felt sad about and that I wanted to let go or stop doing. Feeling disliked by others. Set backs in my business with my business. Judgements about my body. Not being able to just stop and rest fully, always being busy. “Wow…”I thought… “Every knot in my back tells a story”. 

Side note: As I reflect on this now, I see so clearly that these were all wounded “Maiden” thoughts, unconscious deeper layers to this “Maiden to Mother” rites of passage work. Thoughts that were present beneath the surface of my skin waiting to be felt, heard, met.

This grief ritual practice is similar in many ways to my own practice – MOTHER – which you can access for free below.

Body, please show me more

Grabbing my journal and my pen. I asked “Body, please show me more

I continued to hug and massage and began moving my body “What else is here? What sadness are you holding?” I asked. Tears still streaming down my face, the sadness bubbled up one by one. 

  • Sadness to not have free time.
  • Sadness for being so busy all the time with work, training, coaching.
  • Sad for the seriousness of the day.
  • Sad for not spending more time with my husband, family, friends.
  • Sad for being an absent friend. 
  • Sad for every knot of tension in my body.
  • Sad that I’m numbing something and I’m not sure what.
  • Sad that I am trying to prove something and I don’t know what.
  • Proving that I am worthy to do this work.
  • Sad to be a patriarchal perfectionist who doesnt feel good enough to do this work.
  • Sad for being sad.
  • Sad that I don’t have a stable life. 
  • Sad for my sister who passed without fully living hers.
  • Sad for my mother and what she went through.
  • Sad for my baby boy who is gone.
  • Sad for my baby girl all alone.

So much sadness that had been bubbling beneath the surface without me even realising it. So much sadness wanting to be felt and heard and released. 

Our sadness and our grief are so intertwined. We hold it in our bodies. Unconsciously. And the heaviness weighs us down unconsciously. These issues in our tissues are there unconsciously.

I hadn’t acknowledged any of these sadnesses until now. I hadn’t given voice or word or thought to their presence but acknowledging them felt good. Massaging out the knots felt good. Crying out the pain felt good. I felt tender after but I knew many things within me had moved. 

No sugary snacks or alcohol necessary.

I slept like a baby after that session. I didn’t need to eat any sugary snacks or drink any alcohol. No numbing or dumbing anything that I wasn’t aware of or giving consciousness to. 

 

I felt how much had moved in me through the light of consciousness and somatic movement. I had allowed it out and in doing so I had released myself of some of the heaviness and weight of my pain. It felt freeing and powerful, further cementing the importance of taking the time to practice releasing our held grief through ritual or 1-1 support.

We have been so programmed to hold it all in, to numb and dumb ourselves rather than fully feeling the depths of our pain and acknowledging the sadness we hold. Yet it is within the feeling of it that we can bring the light of conscious awareness and access true liberation.

 

If you are ready to release some of the heavy load of the grief and sadness you are holding and you would love to be supported by a somatic coach and healer, this is the work I am doing with clients in my 1-1 sessions in Womb Alchemy, to discover more see the link below.

Much love,

FOLLOW ME ON PINTEREST

Niamh helped me gain profound clarity!

I had such a deeply transformative coaching session with Niamh as she holds such a healing and unconditionally loving space. It felt like alchemy on a deep cellular level, shifting emotional blockages into profound expansion and clarity.

 

Elsa Kvarnbach

Niamh is an incredible coach!

Niamh is an incredible coach. She is dynamic, sensitive and powerful. Her efficiency and caring nature make you feel supported from the beginning. I love how easy it is to talk with her and how assertive and direct this style of coaching is.

Natalie Farrell 

Niamh truly is a conscious business midwife!

Niamh’s calming, warm, and compassionate way allowed me to safely dive deep to release blocks and worn out patterns of doing and being. She truly is a conscious business midwife!

Amy Frankel

Niamh has such a loving presence.

Niamh has such a loving presence which makes it so easy to feel safe and open up about anything that comes up in a session. I could also feel her excitement for me and my journey which inspired me to connect more deeply with my own excitement.

Lizzy Guhl

Niamh is a Feminine Embodiment Coach, Somatic Womb Healer, Rites of Passage & Cyclical Living Mentor, Guide & Teacher. Through somatic, trauma informed coaching and embodiment practices she supports Soulful women through life and business transitions.