Loss of love, family, friends, money, support, health, well-being, stature, joy, empowerment, possessions, ability, job/career, business, house, relationships, community, competitions... is still LOSS.
It creates emotions, like sadness, frustration, disappointment, anger, indifference, rage, surprise, envy, bitterness, and so many more.
We all experience loss. We feel it, see it, endure it, and want to avoid it.
But can we really?
I recently lost my sweet 15 year-old cat, Venice. It is interesting to think that I spent 15 years in Public Accounting and just when I finally stepped into my true being, my kitty leaves my side. It really pains me to recognize that. I cry even as I type this.
Fortunately, I enjoyed my time with her and am blessed to have had her in my life for as long as I did. But I still miss her. The pain is still pretty fresh as she only passed away 16 days ago.
My life still has to go on. I still have my family to love and support. I still have Bailey who needs me because he misses his sister. I still have clients to serve. I still have to eat and live knowing Venice no longer snuggles with me at night.
I understand why loss is so hard and so painful. You may be thinking, "But you only lost a cat." Yes, I lost my cat, but she was very important to me. I loved her. She loved me. She supported me.
We each encounter loss more often than we ever want. We lose people we love. We lose animals we love. We lose jobs. We lose pride. We lose our joy. We lose our abilities to persevere. We lose material possessions. We lose money. We lose our connection to ourselves. We suffer SO many losses.
How we handle these losses are a different story. Some of us fall apart like Humpty Dumpty. Some of us wallow in misery and then get back up, even years later. Some of us bury the pain and deal with it later, or maybe never.
For me, I feel the pain of the loss. I feel it and think about it. My memories take over. Waves of sadness and anger and other emotions crash over me, sometimes stronger than others. I work to calm the waves and calm my mind. I work to move forward. I question how, what and why the situation came to pass. How will I move forward? What am I to learn from this process? Why did she have to die?
These questions help me to see the possibilities surrounding what I am here to learn from the loss. It allows me to see the deeper purpose of the loss. It allows me to see the blessings from the loss. I begin to understand that to balance the loss, I must recognize the gain looming in the distance.
What can I gain from losing Venice? Perspective. A realization that she is still with me, just in a different form. A knowing that she has transformed into a spiritual form who now guides and protects me differently than before. A belief that each life form serves a purpose in a meaningful way, however short it may be.
I have also gained a greater appreciation for the preciousness of life. I recognize that suffering loss was necessary for me to understand the struggles others face, and the support they need to move forward. I see the compassion I need to have for everyone, because I don't know the losses they have suffered.
I have lost family members. I have lost animals. I have lost the closeness of friendships that no longer exist. I have lost contact with important people. I have lost track of time. I have lost money. I have lost romantic relationships. I have lost contests. I have lost pieces of myself.
Some of those losses were purely devastating. But all of those losses were necessary for me to evolve. They showed me how to grow and move forward and see things differently.
I have gained new family members. I have gained new relationships with animals. I have gained new friendships. I have gained contact with new important people. I have gained recognition for who I am. I have gained freedom. I have gained money. I have gained new clients. I have gained love. I have gained support. I have gained an understanding of WHO I am and how it serves me and others.
Loss is hard. Loss is emotional. Loss is a roller coaster.
Loss can also be enlightening and reflective. Loss can be experienced however you choose. You make the choice. You choose where loss will take you.
With love + gratitude, Alana