If my mom was still alive, she would have turned 90 just recently. There are many ways in which we can process a loss and carry on a loved one’s legacy. They might have taught us something or embody something worth continuing. Or there are things they have done or not done that you decide to do differently. That, too, is their gift to you. In fact, both might be the case. Processing a loss often includes being comfortable with ambiguity.
It has been imprinted on our psyche that holidays are the time to spend with our family and loved ones. But what if we are still grieving the loss of a family member who has passed, or we live in a split-up family, or we cannot seem to make the dream of a family come true, or we are experiencing the loss of our health, our job, our pet, our home and so on? How do we get through the holidays when they deepen our sadness and magnify our pain.
We cannot emotionally complete our past until we are aware of our patterns, habits and beliefs. Without uncovering them, we bring our emotional baggage into the next relationship and repeat the same patterns and issues. The first practical step to achieve clarity is to examine our relationship history.
Why do we often live one relationship after the next with the same patterns and issues? The reason for that is that we don’t learn how to grieve and complete relationships that end and therefore we carry the unresolved emotions forward into the future.