Recently I witnessed something and it reminded me that in grief, I have two very simple choices:
- Be lost in the sorrow
- Find the Joy in my Life
I hope you know that I choose number 2 always and I am very proud and impressed to say – so do my children.
Yet recently, I realised that not everyone makes this same choice. There are people who choose number 1 consciously or unconsciously and miss out on the happy times right in front of them.
When someone dies or you experience a tragedy it is devastating and grief is displayed in may forms. However, there is a difference between ‘Living with Grief’ and ‘Letting Grief control how you Live’. I like to think that the children and I have actively learnt how to ‘Live with Grief’.
This does not mean forgetting about the amazing dad and husband we had, it means living the best life we possibly can in spite of our loss. We see life as a gift, we view every day as one we are grateful to experience. I feel it would be an insult to my gorgeous husband to do anything less. He only got 40 years and I promised myself the night he died that I will enjoy every single moment that is given to me to live.
When I see people so consumed and caught up in their grief I feel sad and bewildered. Unfortunately, “Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.”~ Abraham Lincoln.”People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar” – Thich Nhat Hanh. I would love to teach everyone to find joy and happiness in their lives but unfortunately this is an individual journey and choice you need to find for yourselves. The true test is to appreciate the people you have around you and understand it is ok to celebrate the happy times, the birthdays, the births and the deaths. It is ok to laugh at a joke, sing along to a song and just be totally silly. These actions do not mean your grief has gone or you love the person less, it just means that you have learnt to Live with it. It means you have decided to make the most of a difficult circumstance, it means you have decided to honour the memory of your loved one by Living.
“We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting
something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what
we do have.” ~ Frederick Keonig
On Fathers Day my children and I celebrate how lucky we were to have such an amazing man in our lives. I am not suggesting that hearing Fathers Day advertisements all week is easy or having to be at school when everyone is making a card for their Dad is easy, or that missing Father/Daughter and Father/Son events at school is easy or waking up on Fathers Day without a dad physically present is easy. But what are the choices again – Be lost in the sorrow OR Find the Joy in my Life? This morning I woke up to an amazing omelette, a beautiful card that would make anyone weep and a precious gift. I have successfully taught my children to appreciate what they have and not what they don’t have. In spite of missing their Dad terribly, today they thanked me for being the best Father/Mother and I couldn’t be prouder.
The choice is always ours and it takes more courage to Live Joyously.
It takes more courage to remember the kind, loving, strong man and father who is not with us today. It took courage for him to always find joy in his life and express his emotions openly and honestly. It takes courage to love and remember this man today, who always made us feel loved.
So Happy Fathers Day to all of the fathers celebrating today and please remember to always FIND YOUR JOY and love the people you have in your life. I want to wish my Dad a Happy Fathers Day and thank him for being front and centre every single time we need him.