Today my mind flashed back to January 2020 and the past week, where unexpected news led to boarding a plane to attend a funeral overseas. I couldn’t help but think of the lessons of the year so far once back on English soil.
Unsurprisingly, every loss causes the living to reflect. I attended two funerals in January; ten in total over the last 4 years. The past week has taught me that in grief we mustn’t forget to live. I write this knowing first hand that it can be hard to do so when living through grief – whether you’ve been grieving for three weeks, three months or even three years.
Don’t feel guilty for living
Indeed, ‘grief has no time limit’ but don’t feel guilty for living life, loving life and laughing in the process. Yes, loss is life-altering; things are a lot easier said than done. There’ll be moments in grief that will cause you to reflect and smile, produce a single silent tear or render us temporarily inconsolable. But in all of it, we mustn’t forget to live.
With loss comes lessons
Life is for living—not existing, and in intense grief it can be easy to fall into a pattern of just existing. With loss comes lessons, and the day will come when our absence from this world will teach lessons to those we leave behind.
My take away…
So my take away on the year’s events thus far? Live in honour of those who are no longer here, but most of all, live not just for others but for yourself. Welcome grief, sit with grief and roll with the punches—but in all of it, please don’t forget to embrace life and live.
Aisha A. Phipps
Musings of Ms. Phipps
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