Thursday, October 29, 2009

It Hurts to Say Goodbye

Loss is part of life. No one escapes without experiencing it. We all wish we could avoid it. No one enjoys the sensations of loss, because it hurts.

I was sent this picture today in my email. These chimps are mourning the loss of their beloved friend. They are watching as their companion is buried. You can actually see the anguish on their faces.

We all feel many strong and disquieting emotions when we lose something precious to us: a person, a pet companion, a job, a relationship, sometimes possessions - it could be anything.

At one level, it is important to understand that we, ourselves are not diminished by the loss of anything. No thing or person can diminish us in any way. Yet... loss hurts!

We need to be gentle with ourselves when we experience a loss. Grief is messy. It is unpredictable. It takes energy to process the feelings that come with a loss. We need to give ourselves time and space to feel everything and move through it. We might need more time alone. We might need more time being supported by those who love us. We might need more sleep.

The important thing is to really notice what we need and give that to ourselves.

If you are dealing with any sort of loss today, I wish for you patience and compassion for yourself. Acceptance is the way out of the pain... but it often takes time.