My blog on Sunday was about the importance of friendship. The artist Coldplay wrote a song entitled, “Fix You” that just seems to reiterate the importance of having a few close family or friends that take the time to not simply listen but truly hear you when you need a sounding board or simply a shoulder to lean on. They are more than ‘friends’ that someone can simply ‘unfriend’ on Facebook. (I must admit the thought of simply ‘unfriending’ someone is hard for me to grasp. It must be a generational thing.) The lyrics in Coldplay’s song touch our hearts.
When you try your best but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse
And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace…
The refrain in the song is hauntingly moving.
Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you
Who do you have in your life that help ‘guide you home’ and lighten your load? Everyone needs someone they can reach out to for support, encouragement even redirection at times. We can all get stuck in the fear of the unknown. It can paralyze our mental processing and make us feel like we are ‘stuck in reverse.’ Losing someone close naturally triggers fear of tomorrow. After all, we think to ourselves, we were powerless to stop this loss. We can easily start to generalize that feeling of powerlessness into the rest of our lives. If you find yourself stuck in the ‘whys’ and ‘if onlys’ it may be time to get in touch with someone – a friend, family member or even grief counselor. Do whatever it takes to get the emotional support you need to face tomorrow.
As human beings we have remarkably similar needs. We all need love, acceptance and support. When we lose a loved one each of us goes through predictable stages of grieving. The pain of loss may resurface throughout our lives when something out of the blue triggers memories of what used to be. Verbalizing these feelings is a healthy thing to do. The strongest among us recognize this and are not afraid to reach out for the supportive hand of another.There are special people in our lives to help ‘guide us home’ to find our true north and gently support us as we move on with our lives. They are heaven sent for a reason, season or lifetime.
Is it time to unload the rocks in the backpack you are caring? As I said in my book, the weight of grief can become so heavy that you can become laden down, unable to see the horizon – the light of day in the tomorrows.
Experiencing many losses, I have come to believe – to absolutely know – that God/Universal Energy does not make mistakes. “All is as it should be.” I don’t have to like it but I chose to live through the lessons involved in loss and a big part of that is to learn that I must move through the loss and continue living life. We have been given the gift of family and friends to help us along our way.
Watching bits and pieces of Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee celebration this weekend, I was moved to see the thousands of well-
wishers demonstrating such pride in their queen and country. The queen’s background is fascinating. When she was 14 and England was being bombed, she made a radio broadcast to the children of England stating, “In the end all will be well for God will care for us and give us victory and peace.” At 26 years of age she became Queen. She was no longer free to be a person in her own right but had to become all things to all people. She started weekly meetings with Winston Churchill and has continued the practice with every prime minister since that time. In addition to being the mother of four children she had a 24/7 job. As she witnessed divorces, separations, and deaths in her immediate family she just had to keep going. She adapted to the changes and losses in her life regardless of how difficult they may have been. She has the same human emotions that we all have as a mother, sister, daughter and wife and yet her 24/7 job, for the rest of her life, continues. There is no such thing as retirement for a queen – until death. In a televised address she called the celebration “a humbling experience.” Well done!
Luckily, we have not had to deal with the 24/7 expectancies in our lives that she has shouldered. We have had time to live our own lives, raise our families and even take time out for grief, when needed, without the mantel of expectancies hanging over our heads. I wondered to myself, how many of us can say that, like the queen, we have truly adapted – made changes for the positive – as our lives and our worlds have become more challenging. Do we look at our own lives optimistically, knowing that everything will work out as it is supposed to, or do we become bogged down in our lives wondering when ‘it’ will pass. The ‘it’ is called life. It won’t pass until we do, when our lessons are learned.
To remain optimistic requires that we believe in something bigger than ourselves. It has been said that, “One either has faith in God/Universal Energy or faith in our fears.” Whenever you begin to worry just think about that for a moment. Fear comes in so many forms and can paralyze us. When we lose someone it is natural to go through a period of mourning and fear. After all, life has suddenly changed –
oftentimes – without warning. As I discussed in my book, Just Behind the Door, the future can feel so uncertain after we experience a loss that we may need to seek the help of others to keep ourselves moving forward.
If we all work at fearing less and loving ourselves and others more the world will be a better place. It starts and ends with us. Take time to examine your own life. Don’t you find that 99% of what you worry about (fear) never happens. Yet many of us continue to waste the precious time we have on this earth worrying. We choose fear rather than belief. I don’t think it matters what name you give the power greater than yourself, it only matters that we realize that there is such a power and we are ALL a part of it. Like Queen Elizabeth II, let us give and receive love, have faith in our future and make the world a little better off when we leave it.