We have all experienced it in one form or another. Whether it’s a loss of a relationship, loss of a bad habit, loss of bodily function, loss of a friend or a pet, loss of a location, loss of a possession, loss of a lifestyle you once had, loss of expectation. We have all experienced loss. Today, 13th November 2016 marks the 1st anniversary of the death of my favourite running partner and fluffy friend. It is with sadness in my heart that I write this.
Sadness, Elizabeth Kübler-Ross believes, is the 4th stage in the grieving process. However, given that we are people, not textbooks, we experience loss differently. Perhaps we don’t experience all the stages or we experience them in a different order. In some instances it’s questionable if we ever really reach acceptance but rather adaption – learning to live past the loss.
The loss leaves a gap, a hole and emptiness.
The emptiness and gap we feel is due to the loss of active connection with the person, behaviour or possession. It’s the connection we felt that creates the significance of their involvement in our lives. The space that we feel after the loss, cannot be filled by someone or something else but it does create capacity. Capacity, in terms of time, mental, emotional, or physical ability. We can in turn, use that capacity for activities that can bring us joy.
By releasing and creating the capacity, we can engage in other activities. These activities can enable us to experience a different connection and different emotions. It does so in such a way that it doesn’t take away the meaning of that loss but enables us to experience joy in spite of it.
What has your loss given you the capacity to do?