Grief is surrounded by myths. Believing things that aren’t true isn’t healing and isn’t helpful. Myths cement us. We can’t move forward in our grief or, if we’re the comforting friend, we can’t be helpful. And in fact, we might accidentally injure our grieving loved one.
When we don’t measure up to what our myths tell us – for example, that stifling tears will smother our grief, but we can’t help but cry – we think we’re broken. We try to fix something that doesn’t need fixing. Or we ignore something that does.
Here are five myths that need snuffing out of our society.
For all the sifting I did through my parents’ things after they died, I did not find one indication they ever made New Year’s resolutions, but somehow the practice caught on with me.
They did create goals from time to time and posted inspirational quotes and phrases. I’m more intentional. I divided my 2019 goals into five categories: Book & Career, Income, Health, Home and Spiritual.
I don’t treat my resolutions or goals like masters with a whip, but I allow them to nudge me into the places I want to be. They are guides.
While the calendar gives us a fresh start on our lives each year, there are also sign posts that redirect us to create a new us. One of those sign posts is loss.
Grief remakes us. We may become more aware of mortality and aim to spend more quality time with the loved ones who remain, or we may become too afraid to hurt again and pull away. We may bitterly complain to God about suffering and death, or we may allow that season to fade into the perspective that our Creator cares about our pain even when we don’t understand his methods.