Posted by: Shanie Matthews | March 26, 2010

Life Lessons Learned through the Death of a Loved One

Death.

It is a touchy subject. One that makes everyone react differently. We all process the pain that accompanies the loss of a loved one in different ways, at different speeds. There is no wrong way or right way to grieve. It is a process of learning how to instill the spirit of the gone into the brightness of our lives.

I sometimes feel as if I must have some Karma attached to how I deal with death. Since my 20s I have lost way too many great friends. The first loved one to pass was a caring guy that I had once called a boyfriend. He died in a skiing accident. The second precious soul that departed was my host sister in Germany. She was taken from us by the hands of her lover. The third…the fourth…on and on. Each one so important to me. Each of them an amazing person that I feel so blessed to have crossed paths with, laughed with, and enjoyed life with. They all have taught me vital lessons that I carry on with me as I progress through this amazing journey.

A few weeks ago, when I learned that CR had passed, I started to wonder if others in my familial tribe where thinking about the lessons taught to us by the loved ones now gone. Although death brings us closer, we don’t necessarily talk much about what we are learning from this aspect of life that none of us escape from experiencing.

So, I thought I would ask. The answers I received are inspirational. And testament to the fact that positivity can come from loss. Thanks to you that shared your words of love and light…

What has the death of a loved one taught you?

  • That God made love stronger than sorrow so we could continue. And that how we live is what’s important, not how we die.
  • That trauma digs a huge hole in you so you can hold more love and light.
  • Just how important it is to hold onto memories…no matter how small or how big, sad or happy, its the memory that will keep that friend or loved one alive to you forever.
  • That you endure and move on, but you never get over it. It becomes a part of who you are.
  • That life is short regardless of the numbers of years. To make sure you are living a life that is true to yourself and good for others.
  • That you should always take that extra five minutes to tell the people you love that they matter to you! That there is 24 hours in a day and you should use it wisely!
  • You will never see a person’s true self until they show you how they grieve.
  • That you don’t want to take life for granted. Live well. Play hard. Laugh. Love love love.
  • That you don’t have to leave important things for tomorrow… like being with the ones you love and telling them how you feel… and listening to them and helping them.
  • I heard a line in a movie that I think of all the time now, “we’re meant to lose the people we love. How else would we know how important they are to us?”
  • That you can sense when they are with you whether it is in a dream or when you are thinking happy thoughts of them. I know they are in a good place and I will one day see them again. Whenever I see a beautiful sunset I think my grandma painted it for me so I don’t ever forget her.
  • Death of many loved ones has made me stronger and almost silly of the little things that bug me. Im dealing with some on going trauma with my husband and I think to myself, he’s here and I still have him. Losing people in LIFE makes you stronger for the times that you need to be there for people who are here in life. Everyone of us has a special purpose for why we are here. As silly as it sounds, it’s our goal to find it out.
  • To focus on the love and life that they gave as a gift and continue to embrace that love.
  • Live in the moment, nothing else matters but the love shared between family and friends.


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Responses

  1. I’ve learned a few things from the death of loved ones. Many of which are echoed above. My mother’s death at an early age was the basis of a lot of lessons for me and the inspiration for my latest project, which is now up and running if you care to share in the journey. Love what you’re doing and enjoy reading along.
    http://37storiesproject.wordpress.com
    Blessings…


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