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A Significant Life Challenge – what happens to our thinking …

February 18, 2015 Leave a comment

We go through life, one foot in front of the other, focusing on the next goal, the next thing, always the next thing …. then … life happens.

In my case a relationship, love – the use of silence and dogma as a weapon to whose only purpose was to hurt and exclude – this came from a group projection.

I had allowed myself to love the idea of someone and of a belief in the future to help others, the reality was something else indeed  … it was about all the most base of human fears, about control, about an ideology … for when the survival of a ideology becomes more important that the people within it, the ideology will always fail …. in this case my insight was that the ideology was false …. the most monumental challenge of my life was about to begin – I knew had to face it head on.

How we deal with life challenges such as grief or loss will also tend to follow a process – I know the more widely accepted model is the Kubler-Ross model, but I felt this was was more applicable to my own emotional or spiritual challenge

Stage One – SHOCK & DENIAL

We may react to learning of the Challenge with numbed, uncomprehending  disbelief. You may deny, frantically try to rationalize the reality of the loss in order to avoid the pain. The shock is normal, experience it, as it provides the emotional protection from being overwhelmed all at once. This may last for weeks or longer,

Stage Two – PAIN & GUILT

As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of profound pain –  this is normal, please try to experience the pain fully, and not hide from it, at this point is is incredibly important not to escape from it with alcohol or drugs.

Life feels chaotic, uncertain and scary at this point ..

Stage 3 – ANGER & BARGAINING

Frustration increases and may give way to anger, be aware that you may project this anger and anxiety onto family, friends or medical professionals –  be aware and try to control this, as permanent damage to your relationships may result. This is a time to look outwards and find ways to release the bottled up emotion.

You may shout at the rain, Why Me ? You may also try to bargain in vain with the powers that be for a way out of your despair (“I will never …. If… )

Stage 4 – “DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS

A relatively long period of reflection may overtake you. This is a normal stage – flow with this, do not be “talked out of it” by well-meaning friends or family. Encouragement from others does not penetrate and serves no function but to increase the self doubt. For during this time, you finally comprehend the true magnitude of your loss, and it depression deepens, you may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your lost one, and focus on memories – this may be exacerbated by feelings of emptiness, despair and frustration and self doubt.

Stage 5 – THE UPWARD TURN-

As the reality of starting life without, your life becomes a little calmer and more organized. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your “depression” the feeling that your head feels like a sponge with no ability to think begins to lift.

Stage 6 – RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH-

As you become more functional, your mind starts working again, and you will find yourself looking for realistic solutions to the life challenge posed by life without your loved one. You start to work on practical ways of reconstructing yourself and your life.

Stage 7 – ACCEPTANCE & HOPE

During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, we learn to accept and deal with the reality of our situation. Acceptance doesn’t necessarily bring instant happiness.

Given the challenged face and the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled YOU that existed before this tragedy. But you will find a way forward.

You will start to look forward and actually plan things for the future. Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain; sadness, yes, but the wrenching pain will be gone. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of living

I can see a light at the end of the tunnel and that light is me.

I spend a considerable time in nature … with the nurturing energies that help change my life … over time it brought new levels of consciousness and with that a new perspective on the ordinary and the journey itself.

I have also  gone deeply into mindful meditation and movement therapy such as Thai Chi and Chi Gong (Qigong) … it was the initial reason why I give to others by teaching mindful meditation and movement therapies like Qigong and Tai Chi. online and in person http://mindfulunion.wordpress.com

During mindful meditation I arrived at the point where we exist day to day in a continuous meditative state – along with the controlling our thoughts … and being more in a feeling state than a thinking state .. life becomes creative and peaceful, love and understanding pervade your every waking moment.

Connecting the Dots

April 26, 2014 Leave a comment

I was thinking about Steve Jobs the other day and a quote of his came to my mind … it went like this

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backward”

He is so right, many months ago, it was as if I was in a dark room, feeling my way forward, but I kept falling over stuff, the future that I had invested in was always out of reach … my brother did what only brothers can, and asked me to look at the dark room again, but differently this time.

I went into a familiar process that I had first completed some 20 years ago, it requires only commitment and absolute honestly – it is essential that we face our demons, for until we do, we project them onto the world, through our reactive unconscious acts, hurting those we love, and who love us … since this time, the second process has been completed (such that it can be or ever is), the fiction that fears are real was revealed and you move past them ..  you are at a new plateau, just, so long as we stay aware and keep owning your weaknesses.

When one is within the darkness, we can only feel the pain, for that part of us has no way of communication through language … it takes time, it take commitment, courage and time  .. I honour all those who go through any recovery process.

It is wonderful to feel your family’s love, but what they cannot do is facilitate or enable you – they will withdraw from you –  to support you how they feel they can … it is as if they take you down to the dock for a long sea voyage … you can still feel their love .. but this is a journey we must take alone.

In hindsight, part of connecting the dots, you learn lots of things about yourself – you understand, accept and value yourself,  you make friends with who you really are, and also with your ego, to understand it better .. you learn that there is almost no pain when we are present, for then the ego has no place to hide – you take what you have learnt and over a period of months you let go of the past and bring only the learning into your life – Staying present develops further into acceptance of what is and the letting go of expectations and any sense of a need for control, then one day and every day after, you are just grateful – you feel balanced and stronger, but most of all you are free. Frankly being truly free is a bit scary, but you try new things, people engage and you are on your way.

If one must label things, most of the time you are mindful – you bring a huge focus to anything that is in your present, because you are present … you are careful of where you walk so you don’t tread on insects, you spend hours down by the beach, or in the woods, noticing every aspect of the web of life, the trees, the grass, the birds, of life abundance – new insights come, you experience your consciousness expanding like a wave, flowing outwards into the world … it is intoxicating and yet so much more .. but it is I feel only a beginning.

In this moment, I find life is a wonder – you don’t judge, you love and understand the behaviour of others, and even if you don’t understand, you feel real compassion for what they are going through (for I feel everyone is doing the best they know how to), insights come, and it feels good to engage and help others .. but the real outcome is that you know who you are, you need no one’s approval for you have your own, you engage more with the community and surprisingly you are detached even from your own future …. you flow with what life brings as it comes into your present and you look to the future – you can still feel those you love, but it is as if you are traveling parallel paths, you wonder !…. but you know whatever happens, what a journey there must be yet to come, for all of us, together or apart  ….. whatever comes, you are up for it

Where I am right now, I doubt I will be directly addressing this introspective aspect of me again, well anytime soon that is … for I guess the time for a definitive on any subject is well and truly gone.

I have a new list of subjects for blog posts coming up including an update on the State of our Paradigm I did last year .. interesting times … thanks for reading and if any are within such an experience as this, know it will be different for you, but flow with it, honestly and with courage, you too will come through.  If you need a sounding board, contact me, I will help if I can.

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