Reframing Loss: Cultivating My Own Garden

I know loss. I know it intimately.

I know it’s heaviness. I know how it stings, like the bitter coldness in winter, wondering if you’ll ever feel warmth again.

I know how it drains you physically, lulling you into a deep slumber, leaving you numb, vacuous, empty.

I know the kind of loss that leaves you disillusioned, humbled, and meek.

No, I haven’t “inherited the earth”.

But, perhaps there is something in loss that frees you.

I am no longer distracted or preoccupied with the needless worry of pleasing someone or obtaining something. I am no longer clinging to hope or fortune. I no longer look to others to measure my success or lack there of.

I have acquired my own “space”. The endless space surrounding me that is all mine, with no disruptions, no demands, or “chatter”. There is silence and stillness in this space that I call mine.

My long laundry list of losses redefined me. As my world crumbled around me, I had no other choice but to let go and rebuild.

Like so many others who have experienced loss, I hung on for years, not wanting to leave the ruin and rubble that surrounded me. I desperately avoided the impact of the losses in my life by leaning on old coping mechanisms. This inevitably created more loss and ultimately left me both physically and mentally sick.

It rained. It poured. For years, I sought shelter in fragile spaces with others who were also desperately fleeing. We were running to and from each other, but never truly connecting. It was lonely.

I began to loathe myself and became more entrenched in endeavors that only served to alienate me further from myself and others.

I was hurting so bad that the desire to end the pain became greater than the desire to keep running away from it.

I decided it was time to sit with my pain, to feel it.

I processed a lot. In the space that was mine, I cultivated compassion for myself.

I outgrew my ineffective and old coping mechanisms.

Instead of finding ways to disconnect and distract myself, I found myself intentionally and purposely connecting to myself while sitting in the stillness. My desire to let go of what I could not control and become fully present in my own life began to grow.

And now, I only want peace. I want to feel more alive and connected in the moment.

I have very little as I lost so much: financial security, employment, relationships, health, etc.

And yet, the vulnerability I was left with has lead to personal growth, gratitude, and self love.

Years ago, I prayed for two things, humility and healing. I can honestly say that I got exactly what I prayed for.

In losing so much, I can clearly see what is mine to hold. I can look back and see what I released and “let go” of.

I honestly haven’t written in a long while. I’ve missed doing so, but my energy was being taken up by the consuming process of shedding my cocoon. I was releasing a lot and, and, at times, I was shrouded in darkness.

I am ready to reclaim my life, spread my wings, and take flight. I want to add color and light back into my life.

I accept all things that have made me whole. As hard as it was to lose so much for so long, I have gained invaluable life lessons and love.

Love and light everyone! I know for so many, these are difficult days. Please hang on through them. Cultivate your own garden and spend time lingering there to feel the warmth on your skin and breathe in the scent of honeysuckle. You alone are enough and you alone are love.

Peace.