Can one manage Grief?

Someone asked a Professor "is it possible to move on from grief?". Her response was - "you don't have to, you keep it with you and take it along and carry on"

Then she went on to explain that with her own personal story. She lost her son very young, when he was just 20 years of age. The trauma, pain and grief of losing your own child can only be imagined. And the professor like any parent would, went into state of shock and then a phase of depression.

Many years later she went on a visit to Germany and went to the city of Hamburg. This city was heavily bombed by the Royal British Air Force and United States Air Force during World War II and that created a firestorm killing close to 37,000 men, women and children.

Many buildings were destroyed and many lives devastated overnight.

When she visited Hamburg, she saw a site of a destroyed Church. While the rest of the city was completely rebuilt and modern and being beautiful again, the German people had kept that Church and the surrounding area as is. This site was their memory and symbol of the worst times faced by the city. In a way it represented grief in a tangible manner, if you will. They did not try to run away from it. Instead they held on to it.

The idea was to let the next generation know that you can still hold on to the grief from the past, while rebuilding your entire life. You don't have to try to "move on" and struggle with it. It's ok to carry it in some corner of your heart, while you still can continue with the rest of your life. Don't try too hard to move away because it will add more pain..

The Professor narrated this story to her audience and it clicked. Most of the audience could instantly connect with the idea of not having to keep working on getting rid of grief. Because there are some instances of your life you just cannot move away from. But then you cannot stop living too.. So next best option is to carry it along. And don't let it define you and overwhelm you. Instead like the city of Hamburg, rebuild the rest of the city and make that effort much bigger so the grief is reduced to a small corner. 

Make your life worth something such that the grief becomes much smaller in size. In other words you don't have to erase a line to make it shorter. But you can certainly make another line bigger in parallel to make the first line appear shorter and shorter...





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