Wallowing Through the Muck: Discovering Joy and Meaning After Loss

August 8, 2014 11:39 PM

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Wallowing Through the Muck: Discovering Joy and Meaning After Loss

Life does not progress in an orderly or predictable fashion. All of us are confronted with a series of challenges, some more daunting than others. I believe that challenges present us with two options: 1) To do nothing and stagnate emotionally, spiritually and psychologically, 2) To make a conscious decision to transform our way of thinking in order to find renewed joy and purpose. My illusion of order and predictability was unceremoniously shattered after my daughter Jeannine died at the age of 18, on March 1, 2013 due to a rare form of cancer. At the age of 47, there was disorder in my house, a house whose foundation consisted of values and rules that no longer applied to a world that was suddenly terrifying to me after Jeannine's death.

During my early grief, which for me, lasted about two-and-a-half years, the daily pain I experienced was identical to the pain that occurs when a scab gets violently and repeatedly ripped off of an arm. Trying to cognitively process why my Jeannine predeceased me further intensified my emotional pai...

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