For instance, if I find myself thinking that I will never see my father again and I notice a profound sadness, I pay attention to what comes next. If I continue to deepen into the loss in such a way that I suffer more and more deeply, I take a deep breath. I acknowledge the absence that his death brings me. But I also acknowledge the many ways in which I continue to feel him, hear him, see him. In one such moment, I come to realize that although my father has been dead for four years my love for him has continued to grow in that time. Each day of my life the love I have for my father has gotten bigger, unimpeded by his physical absence. I love that thought! No one ever told me that “growing” the love we have for someone is not dependent upon their being physically alive. I could not have arrived at that thought if I had continued spiraling down deeper and deeper into my suffering at his absence. My intention is to honor his presence not his absence.
From: Healing Through the Shadow of Loss by Deborah Morris Coryell (Healing Arts Press, 2004).
submitted by Diane Grigg