Feelings of loss permeate my existence. They often lie just below the surface of my conciousness, occasionally jumping out like flying fish that pop out of the ocean. Problem is, the feeling does not disappear back into my subconscious. And there are more fish than ever swimming around and popping up inside my head.
Loss seems connected to every facet of my life right now. Each one seems to have eroded a little piece of me. And although I’m working on rebuilding myself (the topic of a future blog post), I’m missing pieces. I’m incomplete, which makes rebuilding all that much harder.
What kind of loss has worn on you? Here’s a brief list of what I’m struggling with on a daily basis:
Loss of energy; loss of time with my boys; loss of our two daughters; Grandma Frances; Grandpa Rick; our families in New York (we’re currently living in Wisconsin); loss of my youth; financial stability; loss of intimacy; loss of the relationship my wife and I had before we had kids (dates, holding hands, long talks about something other than survival, romance). Until recently, I had lost my dream of making the world a better place.
Something I often wonder about is the loss of innocence. I still remember when I lost mine as a child. It happened on four separate occasions – all of which involved my father. Am I contributing to the loss of innocence of my boys?
I feel so burnt out. Every week, a little more so, making the week before somehow seem more bearable. I feel hopeless that I will never accomplish some of my big life goals.
But then I realize: these are only feelings, and they’re based in fear. Fear of more loss, which equates (at least to a degree) fear of failure. These fears are a poor representation of my reality. Whether these negative perceptions become my reality is up to me, because FEAR is really False Evidence Appearing Real. This is an acronym I’ve learned, and it’s true.
But knowing this doesn’t make the fear magically go away. I am afraid of loss, and I’m connecting all of the losses in my life to my current situation, fearing more loss.
I’m having trouble getting things done. Goals that, for the most part, should be easier to accomplish. What makes it worse is that these goals, once accomplished, will put me and my family in a better place.
My wife says I’m being hard on myself. She’s right. But you know what? It’s up to me to do these things. There’s nobody else who’s going to do it for me. My family is depending on me and I feel like I’m failing.
I’m struggling. Why is it so hard to admit that?
Beyond all of the emotion, all the exhaustion and the pain, I realize the biggest loss would occur if I gave up. I refuse to give up, and so should you. As long as we’re breathing we can change our lives, we can help others do the same.
So after this fairly depressing article I have something to ask of each and every one of you:
Please don’t give up.
And remember, you are not alone…