A very close friend of mine suffered one of the worst possible losses back in 2003. Her 20 year old daughter was killed in a car accident.
One day she had a beautiful, healthy daughter headed home for Thanksgiving, the next she had the state patrol at her door announcing the worst possible news ever.
My friend has fought so bravely through this tragedy. She struggles to this day.
She then told me this story:
Not long after the loss of their daughter, her husband brought home a tiny, darling puppy. My friend was not pleased. Her immediate response was to generally avoid the dog. She did not want to feel loving and vulnerable again. It seemed a natural reaction to being in so much pain. She didn’t want to risk getting attached again, only to suffer further loss.
This is true for any type of emotional loss. Why risk the pain again? We often feel we simply cannot bear anymore pain. There is a natural survival mechanism inside each of us for a very good reason, and we are wise to listen to and respond to that inner wisdom.
But there may come a time later when your wisdom says you are now strong enough to love again. I would like to encourage you to try again if you feel so motivated. I believe the ability to love again is always worth fighting for. I believe we grow old as soon as we cease to love and trust our inner wisdom and in the generosity of others.
That is why I wrote my book. Spend the time you know you need when you feel so hurt and fearful of ever feeling vulnerable again. Be generous and give yourself loving respect and compassion. Then, eventually, begin to fight back against the natural urge to never love again.
Courage does not always roar. Sometimes it is the quiet voice at the end of the day which says, “I will try again tomorrow.”