Loss and the Erosion of a Human Being

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…

4 Replies to “Loss and the Erosion of a Human Being”

  1. Thanks for writing this. I stumbled on this post by chance, and I’m glad I did. I’m not facing the same degree of loss as you are, but many of the losses you cite certainly hit close to home.

    Perhaps much of this is the result of being a father with a family to support in this time of financial uncertainty. The recession may be over, as far as the government’s concerned, but our financial security as a family is definitely in a shakier position than it was three years ago.

    I think that uncertainty has precipitated a lot of these feelings of loss and hopelessness on my part.
    But I realize too that I can’t and won’t give up. It’s not an option.

    And while in my mind I know I am not alone, it’s nice to read it in print and be reassured that I’m not.

    1. @ AndrewTF: I’m honored that the post offered some reassurance. I agree that the financial uncertainty many of us are feeling exacerbates a lot of these issues. I think each stress, each loss, builds up the pressure. Peace & prosperity to you…


  2. A lot of it is a mind playing exaggeration games on you under the pressure of tough times.
    Don’t give up as you said and wait.

    Also don’t quit this blog : ) It inspired people like me an I would like it to go on doing so.


  3. I have often felt like you do. I have two boys age 2.5 and almost 5. I have had a lot of loss in my life, and have constantly felt like I have to fight to get anything or anywhere. I just came across your blog tonight while fighting with my boys to get them to sleep.

    I yell at my boys too, not proud, but seems to be the only way to get there attention sometimes. I know it bothers my wife but the boys don’t listen to her and sometimes I wonder if it is because she doesn’t yell or because I do.

    Let me know if you ever find a way to get back your time with your wife…I totally miss that (and not just the sex), we use to really enjoy our time together.

    If it is any comfort, I. have always thought that with every setback or tragic event we encounter in life we are presented with an opportunity to give up (and become a victim) or press on and overcome it. Those of us that press on eventually succeed, giving up only insures failure.

    I completely understand how tiring the fight can be though…keep up the good fight…IT IS WORTH IT IN THE END.

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