Photo by Moses Mitchell
There was a time not so long ago when it felt like I had lost everything in my external life and in many ways I had. I was devastated financially, folding a business, physically at my worst, my dreams for a happy family and relationship gone, etc etc. But worse was feeling I’d lost my trust in myself, my dignity and my self-respect. I tried to avoid all that loss because I knew it what it would look like when I let my life finally crash. I avoided it for a long time, as long as I could, but in the process what I lost was myself more importantly than anything else. I gave of myself until I was an empty shell to a relationship and a man in the hopes that in the end I would avoid the loss of him, of our family, of my dreams, of life, as I’d come to know it. A life I was miserable in, by the way. But I lied to myself and to everyone around me so that I could live with staying. That was a deep and painful hole I had dug myself into.
When the loss of it all finally came and brought with it even more destruction than I had imagined it would, it was actually a relief. All that loss brought with it a greater sense of freedom. I remember having the feeling that now I was a clean slate. I really think that often loss precedes liberation. It’s really through tough and major losses that so much that’s outdated and limiting within us is burned off. Afterward, we’re left with opportunity and quite often a deeper ability to feel our own hearts and to love than we had before. Parts of us we’d never or barely touched before now have a space to come through and to flourish. Our relationships are deeper and richer, especially with ourselves.
We realize how essential the need to love and care for ourselves really is if we’re ever to reach an outward expression of the truth inside of us. We wake up to what we haven’t been willing to see was bleeding us of our life force. We have the chance to reconnect to our instincts and intuition making better and more life giving choices for ourselves.
Many times after loss has liberated us we come to see our “why” in the world. Why we’re here and what we came to do on this planet. We can see a new life for ourselves, one full of the power and force of our soul. So sometimes we can look back and celebrate the destruction because it did better than return us to ourselves, it set us in motion to create and contribute in a powerful way.
To start looking at your own loss through the eyes of freedom:
Sit quietly and bring to mind a very painful time of loss and destruction for you.
Ask yourself what left you or what was transformed in the fire of that pain and loss. This could be in the form of beliefs, perception, feelings, or ways of being.
Ask yourself whether what left you had been wanting to leave or be transformed for a long time before the loss.
See if there is any part of you that might be grateful for how you were changed by that loss. Even if you are still in pain about the circumstances, see if one way you can be grateful for it is in how that pain has reconnected you to feeling your own heart and thereby feeling the heart of others.