They say suffering can wake us up, sometimes. It makes us face the inside of our self we’d rather avoid, it makes us realize once and for all (but not really…) who we are and what we feel, more profoundly than we could ever get to know it in the good times. Some still turn away and ignore it. Then, there are those who not just not deny it, they embrace it, they own it, they carry it as the vital part of themselves that it has become. Not in some empty pathetic sentimentality… If suffering is graceful at times, it’s because its expression comes from that brutal truth of life, that simple honesty.
Artists are the key to understanding it. Those performers who shook their audience with their unapologetic being. Whatever they show and give is real and untrimmed. They give it all and they give it the way it is. Imagine Nina Simone or Amy Winehouse. Even at their lowest, they didn’t lose the gracefulness of who they were. However, I doubt everyone can see that. What if honesty hurts? Is it less valuable?
Nevertheless, if it’s graceful, it’s because it’s not all black, it’s because it transcends the suffering and brings to life beauty. It’s a whole of many colours, yet simple in its sincerity and straight-forwardness. Profound joy can bear it just as well. Willingness to be in touch with integral parts of our personality or our feelings or our lives, refusal to withhold or discard them only in the name of tact, is what for me constitutes grace. To simply be, in triumph or defeat, as a field of flowers or a tornado.