Lessons I’ve Learned from Loss

The risk of love is loss, and the price of loss is grief.” – Hilary Stanton Zunin

1. The people we love won’t always be around. Life can change in an instant, and permanently. Once it’s over, it’s over, and there’s no going back.

2. Loss shows us that time passes and comes to an end. The things that used to matter don’t matter any more. Grief crystallizes values and what matters most in life.

3. Grief follows its own schedule and trajectory. There isn’t a right way to work through grief. You take it as it comes, and take it one step at a time. It can’t be planned in advance, and it’s unpredictable.

4. Although life moves on around you as though nothing has changed, it’s OK if you focus on, and honour, what you’ve lost. Your grief is real and valid, and you should give it its place. You owe it to yourself to feel and process layers of loss.

5. There are some kinds of losses that will always stay with us. We won’t recover fully, or forget what we once had. There will always be a sadness, and heartache, and a grief. 

6. Over time, you slowly learn that joy and pain can co-exist. It doesn’t take away from the pain and loss you feel. But you see it’s possible to still experience happiness.

7. The landscape after loss is unfamiliar and unknown. We’re stumbling in the dark; nothing really feels the same. We feel that we have changed, and we’re strangers to ourselves. Also, there’s nothing that appeals or that draws any more.

8.  You feel so isolated – for no-one understands. It’s something you must face, and must live through, on your own.

9. Loss creates anxiety and deep insecurity. Your world’s fallen apart; nothing’s certain any more. You don’t believe in dreams, and you’re too afraid to hope. The future just looks bleak, and is something to be feared.

10. You appreciate the people who’re sensitive and kind. Who understand you’re grieving, and who let you take your time. They don’t have expectations. They never make demands. They let you just be real. They don’t need you to be strong.  

22 thoughts on “Lessons I’ve Learned from Loss

  1. There are so many good points here. I can’t pick my favorite! As I read your list, one of the “suffering servant” scriptures came to mind: “He (Christ) was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering.” Isaiah 53:3. But, because He endured this, He knows how to comfort us in OUR sufferings! (2 Corinthians 1:3-5)

    Your post reminded me how you recently said your father was completing his earthly journey. The freshness of your own grief is being used by God to comfort others. I pray God will continue to give you His perfect peace during this difficult time. 🙏❤️

    PS. Thank you for being a wounded healer!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind words. “Completing his earthly journey” is such a beautiful way to express it. And, yes, we can only offer comfort because we have received this comfort ourselves. I know this has been your experience too, and why the insights you share in your blog are so powerful 🙂 Have a great weekend David!

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  2. Point #6 is so important in the grieving process. “Over time, you slowly learn that joy and pain can co-exist. It doesn’t take away from the pain and loss you feel. But you see it’s possible to still experience happiness.” People have a tendency to feel guilty if they let themselves feel happy for a moment. Grieving constantly is not a fair expectation.

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  3. Thank you for your post. I’ve been grieving mom’s loss and recently lost my dad, he was estranged from the family but I feel his loss more than I thought was possible. Right now my world is a strange and unfamiliar place and so am I. Thanks for writing about grief. We need more people sharing about grief.

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    • I’m really sorry for your loss. Losing both your parents in such close succession must be very painful and destabilizing. It’s a lot to deal with. I lost my father about 3 weeks ago so it’s quite raw for me, too. Thank for taking the time time to read, and share from your experience.

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  4. Well written, thank you for sharing. We have to understand that we should not feel ashamed of grieving because it is the only way to healing. I am sorry for your loss, may you find the healing you deserve.

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