When Grief Transports You Back…

friendsLast week I received shocking news, which transported me back into time…those pleasant days of sitting for hours in the company of friends, those carefree moments that seemed to suggest life is blissful. We basked in its glory, oblivious of the fact that we would go our own way, get busy with the nuances of life only to meet occasionally and that too if we made special efforts to synchronize our visits to our home city.

Time is ephemeral, but we keep drifting back into it whenever it exhibits its tyranny!

This tyrant snatched away those insouciant moments we still treasure. Ironically… it brings back those whiffs of friendly fragrance more at such times of bereavement.

Happier times pass by complacently, with the thoughts that all is well and we have all the time in the world to meet.

Could we ever imagine that a day will come when we would be far away from each other, yearning to be together in the grief of one of us?

Could we ever reflect that we would be placed thousands of miles away and the word ‘friendship’ would stand before us in a questioning mode?

Could we ever think that one of our most effervescent and vivacious friends would be the first one to face the biggest setback of life…losing her husband and that too at such a stage when life starts afresh?

I always thought that I have become impervious to setbacks, having the experience of facing them since childhood but each one brings new emotions and memories. This one jolted me out of my illusionary world of thinking ‘everyone has to go and so must I.’

I often say I am ready to go, unmindful of the sentiments of my dear ones. I preach selflessness but in the process forget certain emotions that are vital to heart despite detachment. Today these emotions are hitting me hard from a new angle. They remind me that detachment is a mere word…a delusion to keep us occupied to deal with the struggles and realities of this world.

friends

Real detachment is painful and the laceration never heals as it is eternal…it is like amputating one part of the body.

Recently I came across an interesting perspective about time – “Time does not heal, it just teaches us how to live with the pain.” This outlook appealed to me and as I look back, I nod to myself how true it is as time has blurred my agony and hurts and I have learnt to live with them.

I know my wishful thinking can never put us in the same boat of blissful friendship we shared but we can provide solace with our words. We cannot bridge the distances but we can be with each other in spirit.

As I grieve over the loss and loneliness of my dear friend, the words of a famous poet come to my mind: “If moments were birds, I could have caged them, nurtured them with care, fed them with pearls and kept them close to my heart…”

Moments do get entrapped in our hearts and we can revisit them through our “inward eye.”

“A friend is what the heart needs all the time.” Henry Van Dyke

‘The greatest gift of life is friendship’…Have you received it?

Thank you for reading this amalgamation of emotions. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

If you have liked this real story, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Balroop Singh.

 

Advertisements

Self-judgment Is Equally Detrimental

Self-judgment

I am sure nobody likes to be judged but what about our own judgment, which is continuous and constant?

Did I hurt him/her? Did I say something offending? Did I shirk my responsibility? Where did I go wrong?

Am I right in…there are thousands of such questions, which keep cropping up in our minds every day. We may call it self-reflection but it is self-judgment too.

The difference is just this – the former is positive and the latter is negative.

We all know that negative thoughts are overpowering and intensely pernicious. Yet we let them dwell in our minds.

They are like those moments of pain that never go. No! They are not the old ones. New keep cropping up.

Some moments, which are too personal, too close…so precious that you can’t even share them. You can’t let them go. You have to grieve over them. You make peace with that pain because it is not directly yours, not within your reach yet it is connected with you…in the form of a near one, a very dear person who considers you your confidant.

Can that pain be betrayed? Can you detach from such a situation?

Can you blame yourself?

I have written about detachment, about letting go to move ahead, about the ‘Valley Of Happiness’ that is so easy to imagine but when you try to live in that valley, somebody enters to remind that life never fails to bring up new turbulences even if you try to conquer it’s endeavors.

Those moments of elusive sleep with mind drifting into the forgotten realms return. You wonder where your promise of keeping grief at bay has vanished.

You think for hours and then remind yourself that the only way is to dismiss those despondent thoughts.

When we think for hours, searching for our own role in the whole scenario – that is self-judgment.

When we blame ourselves for something we didn’t do intentionally – that is self-judgment.

When we wallow in the grief of a near or dear one – who doesn’t possess the confidence to move on, searching our own role in the situation or failure to help, that is self-judgment.

You try to respond to a sad story in a positive manner but that lump in the throat wouldn’t let the words flow out, you want to scream yet the voice seems to fail you, you feel throttled, tears well up in your eyes but you try to hold them to show your courage and all these emotions get wedged between the struggle to grieve and let go.

People consider you a sentimental fool!

All that tall talk… ‘Count your blessings’ seems hollow at such a time.

Despite all the feelings of helplessness and anguish, we have to hold the strings of positivity to leap out of those dumps.Self-judgment quote

There is no other way. The choice is ours. Keep lying low and wallow in self-pity or grieve and be done with it.

Self-judgment makes us doubt our own intentions.

It shakes our confidence.

It lowers our self-esteem.

It pulls us back into the dumps of depression.

THE ONLY CHOICE:

Train your mind: If you tend to hold yourself responsible for the misfortunes of others who are dear to your heart, you need to train your mind. Like any other training, it would take time. It would take more time than getting a mechanical training because emotions are supple, attachments are deep-rooted and enlightenment may require a full life.

Remind yourself: It is not your problem. You can’t mitigate the pain of others. You can’t change their circumstances. You can only empathize. Don’t drown yourself in their sorrow.

Give positive support: Avoid criticism; it never helps. All we need is reassurance that we are on the right path, that we are putting in our best efforts and our love for those we value would never wane.

Do you judge yourself? Do you hold yourself responsible for the misfortunes of others? I would love to hear your views.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

If you have liked this article, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Balroop Singh.

 


 

Is It Deluge Of Destiny Or Just Hatred?

Deluge of destiny

I know grief is not individualistic
I know it pervades all around
I know it is self- healer
I know it unfolds the truth of transience.

I don’t want to wish it away
I want to let it penetrate my skin
Let the flames of its fire
Steel my bones, fortify my spirit.

I don’t want to hold the flood of tears
I know they will drown the ash
The hurt, the despair, the emptiness
I know, deeper love causes greater grief.

I want to return to love and laughter
I want to open my windows to the sky
The anguish, the loss buried inside
Will it ever let me do that?

Every morning I wake up with your thoughts
Hoping for the dawn that erases bias
Wishing to feel the silence of guns
Yearning for peaceful co-existence

I live with the hope of change
To heal the aggrieved hearts
My hands may be empty
But they can handle the deluge of destiny.

© Balroop Singh
All rights reserved.

Each life is precious, each tear carries a deluge.

You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more such poems.

If you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

The Emotional Aspect Of Grief, Which Later Became My Friend!

Grief

Grief…I have written a lot of poetry about this word, which ceased to be a word for me long back and became an ever-encompassing emotion, just like the threatening dark clouds, which refuse to break away without torrential rain.

I know this emotion is not individualistic. I know it is all pervading and agonizing but when it starts defining life for us at a very young age, it becomes a part of our personality.

That is how it assaulted me, devoid of any compassion with killer instinct to annihilate my existence.

I had to deal with it single-handed, finding excuses to hide away from it, putting up a brave front, denying its existence and even shoving it into the obscure corners of my mind.

We can do so when we are very young, burying our memories with the hope that they will remain repressed. Dwelling in the world of denial we move on, pursuing our dreams and basking in their glory.

Forgetting that no glory lasts forever. Oblivious of the reality that grief is an incessant stream that flows into our life time and again and brings all those boulders back, which we had discarded in the hope of never meeting again.

It is like an ember that keeps glowing in one corner of our heart, which keeps reminding that it is real, it is persistent, it cannot die.

How can you expect a child to grieve? A child who doesn’t even know this word, who is suddenly thrown into the sea and expected to swim!

How can you tell a child to shed tears and empathize with those who want to glorify grief?

‘How dare you smile or laugh’…people remind us and compel us to keep the grief alive in our heart.

I can recollect a feeling of emptiness, of loneliness, of guilt encompassing me, shrieking…keep that emotion alive. A reprimand arising out of my heart…dare you not abandon it!

Such is the way of the world or that is what I experienced. Moments of joy were snatched away not just by the dead, who left me behind but even those who were alive because they chose to live in sorrow.Grief quote

Grief is one emotion that can never be suppressed… I learnt this lesson in the prime of my adolescence; it is better to accept it, embrace it and conduct a meaningful dialogue with it.

Give it some time to let it percolate, assess your strength, build it further and emerge emotionally resilient. Only grief can do it. It is only in misery that we learn to become understanding. Our vibes of sensitivity become more functional. We become resistant to judgments.

We learn to live with it.

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” – Vicki Harrison

After all the tears and heartbreaking moments of anguish, grief starts diluting itself and steps out. We just have to open the doors and windows to let it ease. Now it re-enters in a new form if we are ready to accept him like a friend.

When I befriended grief it started patting on my back, it sat with me to reassure that it would welcome joy. I was astounded that it too loved to break free. Now both of us enjoy freedom, soar with each other, laughter accompanies us and we have vanquished negative thoughts.

We pour our concerns and tears into poetry, which is all-absorbing and provides us with somber solace.

Grief is our best friend:

It acquaints us with our inner self.

It makes us ponder to understand its nuances.

It makes us wiser and more tolerant.

It reinforces our faith and strength.

It ennobles us.

It introduces us to joy, which lies in little, fleeting moments.

Have you found a friend in grief by accepting it? Do you like this new relationship? I would love to hear your views.

The above extract, adapted from my next book, which is in initial stages, may seem gloomy and out of place but grief is one word that surely touches our lives with its cold hand, at some stage of life.

If you have liked this article, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable comments, they are much appreciated.

Balroop Singh.

 

Why Death Anniversaries Are NOT Emotional Moments

death-anniversary-quotes-meaning-sayings-cs-lewis
Source: pinterest.com

This week I had shared my thoughts about the emotions attached with birthdays from the spectrum of a girl who yearned for care, affection and recognition in a society mired in biases. I appreciate all those who shared their insights and memories.

One of my friends, Hariod Brawn said: “…anniversaries of all kinds may evoke strong feelings within one. For myself, the strongest are those dates on which a loved one died.”

When I felt it was strange, he responded

“Why do you find it strange that anniversaries of deaths are more emotional for me? I think that is a universal and quite natural state of affairs. Is it not?”

I don’t think so. It is not universal.

Death anniversaries could be emotional for those whose loved ones leave after fulfilling all their promises that they had made to themselves and their loved ones.

Death is beautiful only when you have lived your life. When it comes suddenly in the prime of youth, when it leaves behind unfulfilled hopes and desires, it is nerve shattering.

Such death anniversaries become traumatic, not emotional.

Because emotions lie scattered and shattered at such a time, the shards are too piercing, discordant and acrimonious.

Because you are too confused to gather the debris

Because the mourning is deafening, it seems futile, a façade and proves ineffectual

Because a lot of people try to confound you with words that seem hollow and simulated

None of those words soothe you

All that is more prominent and understandable is indignation and exasperation – extreme sense of revolt against destiny or God, whatever you believe in.

When your whole world falls apart, when you have to abdicate the little joys of childhood, when you have to fend for yourself, when your so called well-wishers wait for you to falter and condemn you for your immature acts…

It is at such times that death anniversaries become meaningless.

They bring along harrowing memories and festering wounds, which never heal.

When each day is spent in remembering those lost moments of unfulfilled yearnings,

When each day seems an uphill drive, with steering in the hands of an adolescent,

When faith lies prostrate at the alter of destiny

Such Death anniversaries are NOT emotional; they lose their sheen.

They are distressing; they only afflict pain.

All the positivity and spirituality fades in the face of hunger, which stares at you at such times.

Mourning continues till we meet our loved ones…in Heaven.

IN GRIEF

 Their wailing grew louder
Onlookers stared, consoled
More mourners gathered.
Wailing became unbearable

It hit my heart.
Deep, down the chest
Some pressure, some unseen hand
Oppressed my breath.

Unspoken words, parched throat
Streaming tears
But no wails.
I could not wail. Must I?

Do I need to pretend?
Please! Will somebody understand?
Can you detach me from tradition?
Please leave me alone.

Let me feel that cold touch.
I am STILL in mourning.

This poem is an excerpt from my book ‘Sublime Shadows Of Life’ (available at Amazon.com) Here is the link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00EBLWR0A

If you have liked this article and the poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Have you subscribed to my posts? It is absolutely free. You can do so just now by clicking on ‘follow’.

Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable comments, they are much appreciated.

Balroop Singh