Search This Blog

Friday, February 06, 2009

Loss, change, fear, hope...

I find myself in a complex place this afternoon. I just finished watching the last episode of Millennium, a tv series I enjoyed in the late 90s. I also just completed reading a series by one of my favorite authors, Stephen Donaldson. Both of these were about struggling against apparent good and evil, experiencing the horrors in life and trying to make sense of them. I don't have these kinds of extreme horrors in life at all, but I resonated today with the closing of these two series. I empathized with the way the crew felt in their documentary on working with something special and having it gone, move on. Loss. Ending an intense series is mirroring other losses.

Recently I was a pallbearer for both my grandmother and my wife's grandfather. I lost my job in December. Two good friends of mine are going through divorces. Relationships with my family have changed as they move from protectors to peers, and I grow into whatever it is I am growing into.

I'm contemplating loss today, and as I read an article earlier about Spain giving rights to apes, I imagined the feeling I would have recognizing a consciousness that humanity has probably hurt, being granted a reprieve by our own choice and the great hope that would bring for us a species. I also realized, probably belatedly, I am grieving over the losses I've experienced. Not just the recent ones.

Loss is about feeling like I don't have choices. I explained to Tom the other day that I have TOO many choices, that I needed to write them all down. All the things I want to do. So many, I attempt none of them. I still think about and talk with relatives who are gone. I imagine new interactions. I recall old relationships that served their time but likely will not have the same shining intensity they once had. But still, I dwell in these worlds - the choice is there to see them, they are not lost. They are just... different.

Expanding my vision, I see the world is experiencing loss - the US economy, the world economy, all the terrible things that are sensationalized to make us feel loss - that things are different and changing. Am I just seeing loss around me because that is what I am focused on?

Change is inevitable, and is full of new choices - it's not all about loss, despite what we are shown and what we bring to our attention. Why do we want this loss right now? What are we trying to get over - what are we trying to become?

The old analogy of the caterpiller becoming the butterfly no longer fits. We don't change from one state to another, to a completion.

I think, today, also, that I feel loss that I haven't done enough of what I think I am capable of. I keep my ideals away from my own actions and desires. I am afraid of the next change, of what things will be shed or changed - of the unknown.

I know this though - their are always choices. So many I don't see them all, or at all, sometimes. And, change must happen, whether it frightens me or not. If I see a greater vision, I should pursue it. I could be much more than I am, but I don't know how to get there.

So. I acknowledge all the loss. But I am weary of dwelling on it. I don't want to go down this path of abandoning living for survival. "Fear is the mind-killer" they say, but I think fear is the choice-killer. And fear belongs to us - we control it. It's time to acknowledge and accept loss, and time to address fear. It's time to see the choices and move on to what the butterfly becomes... next.

1 comment:

Tesset said...

Really deep thinking and reflection, Michael. I can relate to a lot of what you wrote about loss. And yes, I belive adversity won't *kill* us, it is how we deal with it and our fears that matters.