Saturday, April 3, 2010

Easter - Lent & Loss

This year the Easter "season" fell in line with some other days that are significant and also revolve around "loss" in my life. I know lots of you would say "yea, April fools day or loss of your mind " to be funny in response to that statement:) :) LOL and yep I guess you can say that and be speaking a part truth at times! but I am speaking about painful losses. **photo credit:

I practice "Lent" (if you practice mardi gras this is a pre-req) or the intentional giving up (aka losing) of something for a period of 40 days. In my mind this is an exercise that is practiced predominately by the Catholic faith....... to humanize the loss that God experienced by giving up his son, or Jesus made giving up his life for you to "lose" your sins. This was created in order for you to experience the loss (on a much smaller scale) of something that you may take for granted, something you crave or enjoy everyday. A "sacrificial act" if you will. When practicing Lent you then must call on several inner strengths and morals to fully feel the intended effect of the practice. Self control, mind control, craving control, restraint, humbleness, etc etc. You are forced to be mindful of your previous indulgences. I have been successful for most 40 day periods in the last 20 years. This year I failed, not miserably, but on two occasions I broke my promise . photo credit:

The fact of the matter is............. the more I try to ignore the losses, accentuating the positive , the more loss I seem to have to endure. I try not to "pity" myself and my circumstances but that often results in me not being as compassionate towards other people's losses as I could be. It is a vicious circle.... I don't believe there is a "defense mechanism" out there that can protect one from the pain of loss except "hope" that the loss will be replaced.............
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Some things just cannot be replaced.

I have lost my home(s) , my parents (literally and figuratively), a few children (literally and figuratively), friends( figuratively and literally), all of my worldly possessions (on more than one occasion) , two pregnancies, my innocence, my self respect, my money, a couple of body parts and pieces, and a few things that still bug me that I cannot find or replace. I have friends that have lost their legs, their ability to walk, speech, marriages , faith, and children. I could go on and on about loss. I am not going to sit here and say I have nothing at all to do with the losses, I probably caused or initiated each and every loss I ever endured in one way or another. I played a part. I didn't just sit there and "bad luck" fell on my head. I am sure that there was an "alternate" way to do things that may not have resulted in the pain of loss in the same way. I could have made other choices........... I could have thought different thoughts and wished different wishes.......... but I didn't
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I think there are degrees of loss and the further away something falls from the "expected" the more difficult the loss is. If I expect my car to last 8 years and it dies when its 12 I am happy about that loss and replacement. If I expect my fridge to last 10 years and at 5 it dies, I experience a broad range of emotions :) I feel its the same with sentimental items. If I expect to keep that rose that my boyfriend gave me "forever" and dry it and take care of it and then I lose it in a flood I am devastated, while if I lose my best cookbook that is falling apart and covered in splatters in that same flood I am sad but not quite as much as the "unexpected." I think losing people works in much the same way.

I think a person that suffers too many losses eventually loses them-self.

I lost my son 23 years ago on this past "Good Friday." He would be 25 on April 17, 2010. People say there is nothing like the loss of a child. I try not to dwell on it really and most of the anniversary dates go without even speaking of them , I know some say its theraputic but for me it isn't. I like to celebrate or accentuate the positive most of the time. I didn't ask , but my DH and Stepdaughter must have also privately taken pause when the day past within this past 40 days that commemorated the death of his wife / her mom 20 years ago this year. I am not sure that my loss was any more painful than theirs? photo credit:

A lesson to be learned from loss is "value what you have" .......... here's the thing.......... the more you value the people and things in your life the more pain you feel when you lose them.

I watched a movie on the plane ride back recently called "Everybody's Fine" starring Robert De Niro (spelling?) its theme was "loss" I think I am going to buy it for all of my Kids for Christmas and maybe even some friends too? It was one of the few movies that actually had the ability to "jerk some tears" from me and of all places: In the sky on a plane full of people. photo credit:

I am convinced that the only "good" loss is the loss of weight, and even that could be a "bad" thing as well.

Good Friday......... one of my good friends told me in a note today that she thought that "good friday is an oxymoron" She's right. It is.

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happyagain said...

As saddened as I was from reading your blog, (especially the part about losing a son that I did not know you had lost) I realized how lucky I was to have found a "loss".
I will be eternally grateful for the "found" loss of my bff, you! I didn't have you in my life for many years and am so thankful that we "found" each other again! I love you! Your bff! Karen A

Fern said...

Anjie, thank you for sharing your story with me! I agree with you about memorializing loss. I too like to focus on the positives and I don't *celebrate* the dates associated with my losses. I had 4 pregnancy losses. Rather than feel sorry for myself, continuing to grieve for years on end, I prefer to focus on the good things that these losses brought about. They changed the course of my life, literally. I plan to go back to school and either become a grief counselor or a bereavement nurse. I *never* would have chosen that path, had I not lost 4 babies. I also think my losses made me a better wife and mother, because I know how quickly life can end. I value my family and don't want to miss a single moment, because we never know when it will change or be taken away. (((Hugs))) Fern

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