Some of the greatest and most wise souls have come about from hardship and despair.
I’m now beginning to believe that may be the only way to rise above.
When we are down and can’t get back up. Something has happened to shake us to the core, question everything, steals our joy, our passion, our zest for life and love. The big stuff, the kind of thing that when it happens, well-meaning people give us a gentle look and say, “I can’t imagine” or “You’re in our thoughts and prayers.”
The kind of thing that could wreck our life in one fell swoop—if we let it.
A type of event that seems would just happen to them, other people, someone else who may be unlucky or invites negativity.
Then you realize that tragedy doesn’t choose and neither do we.
Support will be there immediately following and will then begin to fizzle. It’s a psychological human reaction and condition. Can we blame our fellow humans?
Time marches on and although it’s still sometimes unbearable for us to put one foot in front of the other, we continue forward, because, well, we have no choice. We don’t hurt or think about it any less, we haven’t been granted the seal of enlightenment or understanding because time has passed. In my own circumstances, I found these things to be helpful in finding the Guru in tragedy.
Look to the Guru within: We all know this and it is true. Our most important relationship is the one with ourselves. When calamity struck in my life, I found myself searching for everyone and everything to give me answers, keep me occupied, save me from my own chaotic thoughts, and pacify my time, space, my emptiness and anxiety.
To bring noise when there was silence, a shoulder when there were none, company when I felt so alone, or a plan when I didn’t have one. But sometimes words weren’t reassuring or hurt more. At times I became impatient with anyone trying to carry my heavy load, or if they weren’t offering to take on more. This is when I decided if I am to get through this, it will be just that—me getting through this.
Support is necessary, but most of the work must be done inside. Attempt to establish a comfort in your body and mind. Whether it is journaling, taking a walk, meditating, yoga, finding someone to talk to, setting aside time to cry or contemplate, seek answers to some questions that may never have an answer.
See the beauty and mystical power everywhere: One night early on in my family tragedy, I made conversation with a lady, a stranger. I told her our story and she asked a couple questions then she reached out her hand to me, squeezed mine then asked if I wanted a hug. I said yes, and she held me, letting me cry on her shoulder.
I left in awe thinking of this stranger’s empathy and it gave me comfort.
Look for signs, whether they come through people, nature, a feeling or dream. These things we must believe occur for a reason and are part of an interworking we do not yet know about. We must believe in magic and mystery.
Accept where you are with no judgments: Each day will bring a different feeling or approach and understandably, some will be encouraging and other days you will want to crawl under a rock. One day you may shed countless tears, and then the next, your stoicism or clarity will astound all. Be where you are and try to accept it. Whatever it is, it’s probably normal considering what you are going through.
Don’t attempt to push your mood or thoughts away, just let them exist and know whatever it may be, it will not last.
Spend time with animals, in nature and with children: What better way to be present than while walking along a stream, city park, cuddling with your cat, playing a game with kids. There is no way not to stay in the moment. They are all great teachers in allowing for some enjoyment. We all still need to laugh, unwind, feel the touch of soft fur or child’s hand. A person or animal that relies on our being there or looks up to us is encouraging.
They allow us to keep going and be reminded of the little pleasures. Remember to seek them out and soak up their energy.
Here’s to finding our Guru.
Author: Jessica Sarkis
Editor: Renée Picard
Image: ePi.Longo at Flickr