Only two things in this life are certain: you will die and you don’t know when. These are certainties yet we spend most of our time trying to avoid thinking about such “unpleasant” things. Thus, when someone dies or is seriously ill it becomes a calamity. We are unprepared.
Everything about our physical bodies has been shaped by evolution. Our evolutionary mission is simply to survive and reproduce. Any adaptation which increases the chances of success in this mission is kept and becomes a part of our genome. Grief is one such adaptation.
Grief is a healing process. It allows us to assume the terrible pain of loss, abandonment and death. It allows us to cope, to heal and to carry on. However, we can become blocked, stuck in this process if we misunderstand it; when instead of integrating the sadness by allowing to simply be, we try to avoid it. Trying to avoid feelings of sadness and the pain of loss can create the suffering known as depression.
We should accept sadness simply as another emotion with its unique sensations, benefits and lessons. Sadness is an inevitable part of life, a healing process. If we approach it with open curiosity, a sense of kindness towards ourselves and a touch of humour, we discover that sadness is a rich multifaceted emotion – bittersweet, which brings with it the promise of healing and peace.
Live like you’re going to die