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Caregivers Who Have Lost Someone
Another Henri Nouwen on death
“I thank my God
every time I remember you.” - Philippians 1:3 (NIV)
When we lose someone we have loved deeply, we are left with a
grief that can paralyze us emotionally for a long time. People we love become
part of us. Our thinking, feeling and acting are co-determined by them: our
fathers, our mothers, our husbands, our wives, our lovers, our children, our
friends ... they are all living in our hearts. When they die a part of us has
to die too. That is what grief is about: it's that slow and painful departure
of someone who has become an intimate part of us. When Christmas, the new year,
a birthday or anniversary comes, we feel deeply the absence of our beloved
companion. We sometimes have to live at least a whole year before our hearts
have fully (or even partially) said good-bye and the pain of our grief recedes. But as we let go of
them they become part of our "members" and as we
"re-member" them, they become our guides on our spiritual journey.
jfkoc, I agree with you, but I think what makes it easier to go around that large hole is a change in my perspective; that is going through the grief process instead of letting that large hole dominate my thoughts and life. What I post is whatever changes helped me accept death and grow. I can fill in some of that hole and plant flowers when I believe death in this physical world does not mean death for eternity in the spiritual world. I believe the "goodbye" is only for today, it is not for eternity
I'm aware you wrote "large whole" and I don't know if that's a typo and you meant eternity, or something else way over my head. What I do know is that my wife is dead and I'm alive, and I can better serve God and my fellows not by focusing on the large hole, but by focusing on the larger whole; on the eternal.