Keep Your Losses Close

When we experience loss or trauma, we don’t forget. And it’s good to keep our traumas, our dark nights of the soul, our griefs and losses in mind.  We can learn from them. Even when you’re bursting forth with growth, you should always remember and acknowledge it can all be whisked away in a moment. You can die any second, so be thankful – for life and death. You may have another dark night of the soul, another loss, another little death coming, but it will just be another step back from which you will recover and live to fight again. Even your “big death” is just your entrance into a new life, or your going back into the Great Life, so there is nothing to fear!

It is true this anticipation of the negative can be taken to an unhealthy extreme, however, as in the case of anxiety. We project past traumas into the future: since bad things happened in the past, they are bound to happen again. This can lead to an anxious, unhappy and hopeless existence. You cannot even enjoy what is in front of you because something bad is going to happen. The other shoe is going to drop.

Believe it or not, it can be a hopeful stance to realize and accept that your existence is equal parts death and life. If you do not cling too tightly to either one, it will help. You are going to have some of both. This is wisdom: be thankful, and keep your wounds close to you. They are your greatest teachers. They are there to remind you you’re human. When Jacob wrestled with God (which we all do) God wrenched Jacob’s hip as a reminder that life is made of joy and pain. Jacob overcame, but he had a limp so he could remember his humanness, his frailty, that death was his eventuality. That is true for all of us and we need not be scared. To die is to become!