When misfortune, disaster or death occur, does it stall your life? Do you recover? And how do you bounce back? To paraphrase Ernest Hemingway, “Life breaks us all; some of us are stronger at the broken places." Everyone experiences the universal human experience of loss, thousands of times in a lifetime.
Our grief cannot be compared nor diminished. Each person’s loss is equally important to them no matter what that loss is. No one can presume that the loss of a pet for one person is less important or tragic than the loss of a job, a lifestyle change, or that of ailing health for another. Each has to deal with their own bereavement individually – and it involves a real, authentic grieving process no matter how one attempts to intellectualize it. It is important not to compare your encounter with grief to another’s. Comparison will only diminish your feelings and experience around your response to your loss and keep you stuck in negativity. This could imply you do not have permission or the right to grieve your specific loss, because it appears someone else' grief is greater. If grief goes unresolved, it is cumulative over time, and can contribute to much depression, illness and/or addiction in life.
Psychologist and journalist, Philip Chard wrote, “Life is mostly a series of losses and life is also a series of gains. Learning to handle loss is one of life’s most important and difficult lessons. It tasks us in ways that reveal, to ourselves and others, the mettle of which we are made. Coming to terms with loss requires a measure of acceptance. It means being willing, once one’s spirit is ready, to walk away from what has been and toward what can be . . .”
In my practice with clients and in opening Pandora’s box of grief for myself, I conclude that the task of acceptance of our loss, which unites with our healing and recovery, is often the hardest to achieve. Acceptance is having the conscious awareness of what life presents to you, recognizing your choice to cope in the matter and dealing with it from a willing, reasonable attitude, ultimately to heal and move forward. While it is not easy for us to ascertain our situations from a higher-self perspective, it may be essential in order to find the meaning in what appears to be unfortunate circumstances.
Look for Turning Your Wounds Into Wisdom - Part 2 of 4
Veronica K. Chilton, as an author of "Shrouded in Secrets, Volumes 1 and 2," and "The Shield Maiden's Handbook," counselor, keynote speaker, she provides services to clients, associations and corporations.