I watched this video clip about Haiti, the cholera infecting as many as some 200 people a day! and the aftermath of the earthquake that killed thousands of people.
How weird is it to think of those thousands of people left in the devastation, trying to rebuild their lives, while burdened by the loss of their homes, members of their families, and their possessions.
There are lots of places suffering after natural disasters, all over the globe, including in the U.S. And then we have the economic depression and superficiality and difficulty making ends meet with the burden of debt so pervasive in America.
And I sat this evening, too melancholy for words, for a while. Alone. Lost.
I can relate somewhat to these people, having lost two family members entirely too close together this year. But then there are some people who lost everyone, or everything, or both! I do not have to worry about cholera, but the aftermath of my grief is massive. I had some life changes just before the first death, and now have recently had many more changes, and I am left clinging to what?
I do not know. I know possessions are not important. So I’m going through a phase of both letting go of and getting rid of things, but also trying to fend off a desperate clinging to items that have emotional significance for me, and an increasingly obsessed effort to live a healthy, organic lifestyle (so as to prevent cancer).
But. I cannot know what will come. There is a lot of uncertainty for me. I have had many more luxuries than say, most affected in Haiti or Japan, but comparisons do little to really help in the long run. I don’t wish I had been forced to face one of these horrible natural disasters, but, I do find it hard to be in my grief, and balancing “moving forward” with so many people completely unaware of the depths of sorrow and distraught-ness inside me (strangers), and those who do know me mostly expecting I will “move on” as they have, or many just think it would be the normal time to. I don’t know. I feel lost a lot. But, after a good cry, I know that I need to move on to something else. And maybe that something will include helping others in grief. Who knows.
I know I need to be gentle with myself and forgiving instead of critical. I have sympathy and empathy for those living in Haiti and elsewhere, struggling every day. I have a different set of burdens. Mine are better and worse, in different ways, and would certainly be different if I were another person (like another one of my family members).
I don’t know what else to say, so I’ll end this post with an interesting thought a friend of mine who lost her husband (and is a mother to three kids) said recently. Everyone was wishing her a happy birthday, and she wanted to be authentic about her situation. So she posted that lately she had been thinking maybe God/life wants her to appreciate the ups as much as the downs. To enjoy, so to speak, the sadness and the happiness. As we are often reminded, you can only experience fuller joy by experiencing the lack or opposite of such a feeling. And maybe we’re not just supposed to live for joy. Although, I would definitely like to see more of it in my life, and, I guess if I alter the way I look at it, I do.