REASONS OF THE HEART
A well-known philosopher once said, “Life is not a problem to be solved but a mystery to be lived.” And so it is with our grieving. We try to learn to live the mystery of it, for our only balm is life itself. We learn to trust the heart’s own reasons and that same heart is bound to take us places we certainly didn’t expect to go.
Some try to put grief into neat boxes that make perfect sense of every emotion, every pang of heartache, every desperate question that may arise from our loss. The fact is, grief is an individual experience that won’t fit in a box. No “system” of bereavement represents the be all and end all of research concerning matters of grief or loss for human beings. Yes, familiarity with the famous “stages” of grief might well be helpful to know, as are the various “phases” recorded by therapists in the field of grief counseling. But for one grieving, analysis always falls short. Perhaps the best we can do is speculate as to the common ground we may share when we suffer a great loss. There are no experts, no hard and fast formulas. There is only the experience that you are going through at this moment. We cannot tell you what you should be feeling or how you should be reacting. But perhaps, to a small degree, through this… we are able to be present with you as you walk this lonesome road.
Of course we do see some things similar in the emotional struggles of those in mourning. There are indeed common denominators of our sorrow, the undeniable “reasons of the heart.” There are also special issues in grief, in the “mystery to be lived”, that many of us will struggle to address. These common denominators and special issues do not represent any kind of time line of our grief or any kind of inevitable feelings we should or should not be experiencing. Whatever you may be feeling, it is our sincere hope that you may find here a glimpse of the hope and the strength that reside in the recesses of your heart.
Tighe, John Sidney. “Part Two: A Time to Mourn: The Common Ground of Grief.” Beyond This Day, Good Will Publishers,
2000, p. 31