You’ve known loss. I’ve known loss. We have all lost someone, something, and at times even ourselves. We lose. That’s what entails living. We gain and we lose. I have lost loved ones to death, to misunderstandings, to circumstances, and to the world. I have lost myself more times during the process of growth and expansion than I care to remember. This happens. It must in order to grow. I wish we didn’t have to go through disappointments, despair, loneliness, shame, catastrophe, wreckage, and anything under the umbrella of misfortunes.
When I was in my twenties I lost a man whose absence changed the perspective of what I thought I deserved in love. He would become the love gauge of what and how I should be loved. It would take years to feel the assurance of what I should have in the love department. He asked me to marry him, I said yes, and three days later, at the age of 25, he died in a car accident. Just like that…gone! One minute making plans to marry me and adopt my two boys…and in a second the emptiness and destitution of nothing. It’s been over 20 years since that moment and the heartache that it produced has finally stopped aching. The loss, however, never has.
The thing about loss is that the grief it carries is inexplicable. Its shame is unpredictable. He’s still around in my dreams, in words someone says, in a smile a stranger might give me, in a look another might have. He’s in books and movies and many relationships. He’s still in me because no matter what happens every person who enters our existence leaves a imprint. It is never erased. Some leave them deeper than others. And, every other relationship that has existed in my life has also visited those scars and places of loneliness. In the beginning the shame that arrived for me still living and him being gone was incomprehensible. However, I held on to love. I held on to the beauty of forgiveness and knowing that he passed my life to better it…not to create a trauma so large that I would stop loving forever. The choice to continue loving is one of pure courage. Who the hell wants to feel that pain again? Why would anyone want to take the chance to feel that loss once more?
Here is the thing…to shut yourself off from the world is insanity. It is a great injustice. We are not made to live without love. We are not made to put up walls. We are to continue growing through those losses. I’ve lost no more and no less than anyone else. I have lost physically and mentally while in those losses I have doubted my humanity, my self-worth, and my ability to keep going. I have loved time and time again and have been hurt. I have left the warmth and comfort in not wanting relationships to then dive in and get hurt. I have been ruptured and stitched up again. I have seen the beauty in mindful love and the downside of giving all I am. It’s been worth the ride.
I remember telling someone that a break like that truly feels like a giant crack inside. I believe it is then that the fracture allows for the heart to expand and grow to love deeper. Perhaps I am delusional. I just know that the times that I have ended relationships, or death has taken someone, the pain is so immense that my soul needs time alone to recuperate. I literally feel the ache coming from my chest. It is in those moments that the tears wash everything out and I realize that faith is the only means of transportation. I have no regrets because the child in me only wants love and to be loved. If that entails loss…well that’s a mighty hefty price that needs to be paid.
Love is part of conscious living. You must give it in order to breathe.
We are not exempt from disappointments, deaths, breakups, tragedies, and anything under the scope of loss. Loss is the vulture that cleans our insides. While it’s in there anger, resentment, guilt, shame, and a kaleidoscope of emotions rise. Loss eats every aspect of hope and then allows for new cells to rebuild. If we live long enough we will see the immense power of hatred as well as the magnitude of love.
This is your life. This is my life. This is life. Do not confine yourself to a prison of safety by not opening your heart to the world. You will miss out in other ways that Spirit can gift you through the magic of love. You are not alone. May you find the courage to love again and again for the rest of your life!