I don’t know if it’s the imminent death of summer, the rainy days that soaked me to the bone or the ‘going back to school’ fever, but I’ve been feeling very melancholic over the past few weeks. There was a strong side of me that just wanted to think about the past and seek a little refuge there, for a little while.
And I had no idea why. It wasn’t like my present isn’t great. I just came back from a magical holiday in France, I have a wedding to plan, I am days away from finishing the final draft of The Love Project, I just got another job contract that will see me through to the end of the year and ensure I am financially okay, just before we’re off to Sri Lanka for 5 weeks and volunteer in an elephant sanctuary. I mean, my life is simply wonderful and I couldn’t be more grateful that I am where I am in my existence. Then why the sudden burst of nostalgia as I crossed the Tower Bridge to go to work in an office in Saint Katharine’s Docks, remembering the times I used to live there, the evenings I used to go for a run by the river, the coffees and conversations I’ve had at the Starbucks just under the foot at the bridge and all the other memories from only two years ago? Why, oh why, I felt the need to cry?
And today, as I was listening to Rob Bell’s episode 25 of his podcast (called The Robcast), The Good Grief, I had my answer. Because every change in life means gain but it also means loss.
Whatever was, no longer is.
My years of being single, living in the flat on Leman Street, being a girl about town, playing softball, getting drunk, going on dates, living a carefree and, in a way, a simpler life, no longer are. They are gone and that version of me is gone too and, even though now I look back and think ‘what wonderful years in my life they were’, I do remember how unhappy I was about the fact that I was alone, that I didn’t have a man in my life. I regret not having appreciated what I had more the same way I will regret later that I do not appreciate what I have now more than I am.
So change, no matter how good, means loss. And it’s important to mourn that loss, as little as it is, in order to move on in life. It’s important to grieve.
‘Grief is a multifaceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something that has died, to which a bond or affection was formed. Although conventionally focused on the emotional response to loss, it also has physical, cognitive, behavioral, social, and philosophical dimensions,’ (Source: Wikipedia).
So today I decided that I will alow myself some days to properly grieve for the times past so I can get on with my present and my future. And as I was just making this decision, I already felt better. And this is why, my friends, it’s so important to grieve for the little things in our lives that are no longer.