Lessons from Loss

What can we learn from the grief?

Most people will experience loss at some point in their lives. I was recently in a situation when I lost my Auntie. She was not just any other Auntie you would think. She was a very special person to me as we shared a very special bond.

This newsletter is coming from my heart as I was pencilling down my thoughts on my way back from her funeral service.

My Auntie had lived a fulfilled life in so many ways. She empowered others and dedicated her life to selfless service. She was someone who would walk the walk and talk the talk.

I was experiencing grief at her loss and this is where I began to search the lessons we can all learn from loss.

Grief is a reaction to any form of loss. Bereavement is a type of grief involving the death of a loved one. 

Bereavement and grief encompass a range of feelings from deep sadness to anger. The process of adapting to a significant loss can vary dramatically from one person to another. It often depends on a person’s background, beliefs and relationship to what was lost.

Grieving thoughts and behaviours.

Grief is not limited to feelings of sadness. It can also involve guilt, yearning, anger and regret. Emotions are often surprising in their strength or mildness. They can also be confusing. One person may find themselves grieving a painful relationship. Another may mourn a loved one who died from cancer and yet feel relief that the person is no longer suffering.

People in grief can bounce between different thoughts as they make sense of their loss. Thoughts can range from soothing (“She had a good life.”) to troubling (“It wasn’t her time.”). People may assign themselves varying levels of responsibility from “There was nothing I could have done,” to “It’s all my fault.” 

Grieving behaviours also have a wide range. Some people find comfort in sharing their feelings among company. Other people may prefer to be alone with their feelings, engaging in silent activities like exercising or writing.

In many ways my Auntie’s death  has inspired the desire and passion to live my best life every day while giving service to others. This could have easily gone the opposite way, leading to feelings of utter isolation, depression and loneliness.

Lessons from Loss 

For all the pain it brings, grief brings  many lessons:

  • Grief teaches us that loss is inevitable.
  • Grief teaches us not to take loved ones for granted.
  • Grief teaches us about our faith.
  • Grief teaches us to be patient.
  • Grief teaches us that we should live every day creating memories that will comfort us after our loved ones are gone.
  • Grief teaches us about our feelings.
  • Grief teaches us that it is necessary to grieve. It allows us to move forward.
  • Grief teaches us to find our purpose in life.
  • Grief teaches us that pain and joy can coexist.
  • Grief teaches us to be true to ourselves.

More importantly Grief teaches us to not live a life of regrets.

These were my lessons.

If you’ve experienced grief, do share with me what it taught you ?