I’ve been wondering about this for a while now. Should grief make you self absorbed?

Let me tell you of someone I knew.

A young woman, a mother of two boys, one quite severely challenged, and with another child on the way, she suddenly found herself a widow. Still grieving with a baby on the way, she did have the support of her family and her husband’s but she was alone. A few years after her third son was born, came the devastating news that she had cancer. I met her when the cancer was in remission – graceful, smiling and humourous. She asked me if I was still single, joked that she was too and maybe we should start looking for guys together! A few years later, the cancer was back and it was terminal. She passed away, still a picture of grace, knowing that she was leaving behind three young boys, including one that had to go into a home, and believing that they would be looked after. And they were.

Even as I’m typing this story, I wonder how she managed her deep grief so beautifully and turned it around to be the warm, brave and compassasionate person she was.

I’ve seen other turn people allowing their grief to change their personalities in a negative way . A few of people I’ve met will not talk about anyone else other than themselves and their feelings. This, many years after the events that that triggered their grief. I meet them, and they never ask how I’m doing. Or if they do, I sense it’s just a way of being polite and not because they’re genuinely interested.

We all need time and space to heal.  I get that. Grief and the way we process it is as individual as our fingerprints. I’ve written earlier about how each of us has different time frames for moving on.

But we’ve got to realize grief is not just brought about by the passing of a loved one. Any loss can bring grief. All of us have losses. All of us have grief.

Some people feel that when they have lost a loved one, they’re entitled to get a free pass on everything. While others, who’ve faced similar losses have chanellised their grief in such a way as to be more compassionate, more humane.

I think, like everything else, self-awareness plays a big role in how we allow our grief to plumb the depths of us and bring out the best within us – strength, compassion, love, understanding….

Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life’s search for love and wisdom. – Rumi


Should grief make you self absorbed? What do you think?Click To Tweet

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