Life is filled with disappointments and grief. Many things do not turn out as we had hoped. And yet these times still need to be honored.
While it is not comfortable to sit with pain and sorrow, our growth demands we enter in.
Our temptation is often to deny our hurts in endless activities, or to self-medicate and try to numb the pain.
We might even try to seek logical explanations for our disappointments, believing if we could just understand why, we could protect ourselves from getting hurt again.
Without denying, numbing, or explaining away, a better response is simply to honor the experience – to sit with the disappointment and let it change us.
Grief is an emotion that tells us we have lost something important and meaningful. And this is not reserved just for the lost of a loved one.
We might grieve when our work does not have the impact we desire, or when a friend’s actions let us down.
Whatever the cause, big or small, grief communicates loss – and a loss that matters.
It is an injustice not to honor our losses. And we actually do more harm to our souls when we fail to grieve well.
Grieving does not require a lot of fanfare. It is done in many different ways.
Simply giving ourselves permission to be sad is a good place to start. It’s okay to be sad. Feel the grief and keep breathing.
Nothing is wrong with us or needs to be fix when we are sad and grieving some loss. Being strong does not mean we never weep.
And while every situation certainly does not require us to cry or have a long conversation, we still do well to hold space for the losses in our life – to name it and give voice to it in our own way.
As wholehearted men, we have access to a full range of emotional experiences, including disappointment and grief.
Honoring our grief gives us the capacity to enter into these sacred places with others.