Grief changes us and so does love
Grief is part of life. There are no two ways about it ; we cannot escape loss or pain. However, how we process those moments and seasons of grief, shape our lives for days to come.
Walter Anderson wrote, “Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have – life itself.”
Loss leaves a lasting imprint
When you lose someone you love or go through times of loss, the pain of those moments can sink one into the depths of despair. The struggle is real! But, I do know that the most beautiful people I’ve are those who have known suffering, loss and pain. Yet, they found their way out of the depths.
Life is precious. Sometimes the fight to thrive means getting up in the mornings, showing up at work and not giving up. I guess we are all fighting a battle of sorts. If we are not fighting one right now, my thinking is that you’ve been through the fire before.
You are enough
You are worthy of life.
Every single human being is filled with purpose.
Balega Impis run with purpose
Do you know for what purpose you exist? Are you aware that your unique gift mix is just what we need right now on earth in this time of history?
I’m part of a team called the Balega Impis. Balega is a range of running socks, but not just any socks, they are socks with meaning and purpose. In this team, we have a wide variety of runners – some elite and run like the wind, and others are men and women who love the outdoors. Together we are the Impi’s which is another word for ‘warrior’.
Recently, one of the Balega Impi’s was tragically, taken from us all. Wesley Sweetnam was a man that lived life to the full. He loved trail running, always had a ready smile – and he loved animals. His company, Doggie Style, used to groom my Scotties and kennel my Labrador when we were away on holidays, and so I knew Wes before Balega.
His passing, stirred a myriad of thoughts and emotions in not only in my heart but in countless others – and the tears flowed.
Grief is a strange thing.
Grieving is a strange thing. I remember learning that when my Dad died from cancer two years ago. Sometimes you feel like everything is ok, and then there are moments when grief closes in, and you can hardly breathe. I think that we were meant to grieve in silence and solitude, in community and in the arms of those we love, with loud wails and heart-wrenching cries. We grieve not only for the ones we love but for the gap they left behind. Your love is grief worthy.
Tears shed for another person are not a sign of weakness; they are a sign of great love.
It’s vital to learn to navigate these uncomfortable emotions. We cannot avoid grieving or even the heartache, but we can process it well, give ourselves and others space, time and understanding.
“The darker the night, the brighter the stars,
The deeper the grief, the closer is God!”
― Fyodor Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment
For those who are facing loss, hardship and suffering, here are a few pointers on how to deal with the grieving process. While grieving a loss is an inevitable part of life, there are ways to help cope with the pain, come to terms with your grief and live a fearless, full-colour life. It takes time, but it can be done.
Six ways to process grief:
- Acknowledge your pain.
- Accept that grief can trigger many different and unexpected emotions.
- Understand that your grieving process will be unique to you.
- Seek face-to-face support from people who care about you.
- Support yourself emotionally by taking care of yourself physically.
- Recognise the difference between grief and depression.
“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” –Washington Irving
Don’t be afraid to grieve for in grieving well; healing can come.
Don’t be afraid of change. In the struggles, strength can emerge.
Hilary Stanton Zunin wrote, “The risk of love is loss, and the price of loss is grief – But the pain of grief is only a shadow when compared with the pain of never risking love.”
Don’t be afraid to love. After all, that’s what life is about.
I’d love to hear from you and learn how you process grief and loss. Please share in your comments below. May your heart be encouraged and strengthened on your journey through all of life’s seasons.