“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”-Lao Tzu
When we lose a loved one, we often lose the person who most believed in us, the person we leaned on when we needed to rest and gather ourselves. Once gone, we lack the support and encouragement that gives us strength when we need it. Being loved provides us strength.
Grief is not a reflection of someone else’s love in us. Grief is the pain of the deep love we carry within us for them. It is a love that loses its landing place when we lose that person. We may search for someone else to receive that love, often looking at undeserving applicants. There is only one person, besides the one for whom the love was initially meant, who can carry that love now: us. By reinvesting that deep, profound, painful love in ourselves we can find the courage to carry forward when we least are able.
Strength helps us remain strong and endure. Courage helps us persevere despite fear and doubt, follow our passions, defend ourselves and others, and face the daunting suffering and struggle we meet in grief.
In grief, we are experiencing our deep love for another. That love in turn offers us courage to continue on in the face of extreme sorrow.
How will your grief help you be courageous today?