Grief comes in waves. A cherished family member. A beloved pet. A job that formed your identity.
Loss takes many forms. Tiny shoes on steps. ICU wards. Businesses shuttered. Loss of all kinds. We grieve for the past. It leaves us feeling unstable, weighted down, bewildered.
But, now, we also grieve for the future. The loss that comes with our growing awareness of how the Earth is changing. The natural disasters. The species disappearing.
Will our children have clean air to breathe? Clean water to drink? Will they know the simple pleasures of catching frogs or watching leaves sway and whisper in the wind? How do we grieve losses that have yet to happen?
And yet, we must continue.
Processing grief can lead to an ability to rediscover meaning. To renew our energies. A resurgence in determination to live. And to live well. To do our bit to avoid that future grief.
Our challenge is to ensure that grief does not consume us. We must not shut down. We must stand up. We must remember the many gifts of life.
Life is fragile and brief. Nothing we have is really ours for very long. Realizing that all we have is the present moment can be a window into gratitude, into action, into joy.
We are on an unknown path. Nothing is inevitable. We have certainly learned that everything can change in an instant.
And so, as we witness what is hurtling towards us, we must remember to keep hope in our hearts. We must believe in our capacity for strength. We must keep doing our best each day. And remember that our actions are just a small part in a wide net of global action. And in doing so, we can live through our grief and try to live each day in gratitude.
For it is only this that will allow the resilience we need to create the world that we want.
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