Articles & Quotes

 

Holding on to hope is the challenge of all grief and loss experience. Finding courage or energy to go on day after day requires hope of healing, hope for future. Holding on to hope is not always easy. Some days it requires all of our energy just to maintain our own lives. On other days, we at least want to believe that "for everything there is a purpose," as we try to find the purpose in our own experience. That requires finding ways to make meaning even out of situations that may seem so meaningless.

      ~ from A Time to Mourn, A Time to Dance: Help for the Losses in Life

 

 
 

The loss of a loved one is often referred to as a "blow." That is exactly what it is, an emotional blow that affects the spirit the same way that a crushing blow on the head affects the body. For a while you are going to be dazed. None of your reactions will be as in normal life. In a way, this numbness is a merciful thing because it deadens the psychic pain while it lasts, but no one who has lost a loved one should expect to feel the same as always, or apologize for behavior that is temporarily erratic or different. 

      ~ Norman Vincent Peale

 

 
 
      What does it mean to care?… The word care finds its roots in the Gothic "Kara," which means "lament."  The basic meaning of care is to grieve, to experience sorrow, to cry out with.  I am very much struck by this background of the word care because we tend to look at caring as an attitude of the strong toward the weak, of the powerful toward the powerless, of the haves toward the have-nots.  And, in fact, we feel quite uncomfortable with an invitation to enter into someone's pain before doing something about it.
      Still, when we honestly ask ourselves which persons in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not-knowing, not-curing, not-healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is the friend who cares.  
 
      ~ Henri Nouwen in Out of Solitude