(105) Modern Heroes

All who tackle difficult situations, or a life-threatening illness. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t… but they keep going!

This time the blog is devoted to modern heroes. It’s about all those who fight to turn the tide of the situations they’re in … or fight the serious or life-threatening illness they have. It is a battle of perseverance. Sometimes it works … sometimes it doesn’t … But despite all the setbacks, they keep going. They are incredibly beautiful and especially powerful people who are a shining example for all of us! Yes, they are certainly heroes!

Heroes … others sometimes call them stars. You don’t notice them! You don’t hear them! And yet you come across them every day.

What follows is not a fairy tale, it’s a harsh reality

As an example, there was the daughter who asked her mother if she could give her the name of a modern hero for her school project and also explain why he is a hero. It was not a question that the mother could answer immediately. The mother asked me if I could help her and in a whim I had an answer for her.

The mother was divorced and had to take care of her children on her own. The alimony was not really regularly paid to her by the father. Well, there you are. What now?

In order to survive, the mother decided to start her own business with a service that suited her. For that it was necessary to follow a few courses. She had to … in her opinion … and she managed it with a lot of perseverance.

Just when the company started running, the mother became ill. The diagnosis she eventually received was that she had cancer. It was a form that was treatable and benigne … but still … there was the fear.

The answer to her question was that every time the mother looked in the mirror … that in my opinion she looked at a hero. Despite all the difficulties, all the grief and the fear if things would be fine … she had managed to start a business so that she could take care of herself and her children … and that she had recovered from her illness, although it was still vaguely present in the background. That makes her in my eyes … a hero! Easy to say afterwards … but you need to realize that the mother had to go this long path all by herself.

Around us there are many more heroes like her

You meet heroes every day. These are people who are seriously ill and, above all, who don’t want to show that to others … don’t want to talk to others about it … not wanting to burden others with their grief. If only for avoiding sympathy, or to prevent others from consciously or unconsciously avoiding them … because those others are scared or don’t know how to cope with it themselves.

All these heroes … as if they have a short fuse … quickly notice whether the interest of the other person is meant … is real! They quickly see throuh all kinds of stories that make no sense.

These heroes also avoid conversations where other people say what they have been through, is it not with themselves then with somebody else but worse … many times worse. Sometimes it even goes so far that in their opinion our hero exaggerated. Whatever you think of this… it’s never a competition!

Many people consciously or unconsciously avoid our heroes. Maybe it’s because the other person’s illness is scary … and one wants nothing to do with it … or one comes into contact with a side of life that one is afraid of … a side of life where maybe death plays a role … a side where very different norms and values are important than success, beauty and status.

A personal opnion… or yet it isn’t

Personally, I think it is sad that people avoid these heroes. That way they miss the opportunity to meet … incredibly beautiful and above all powerful people … people who are a shining example to all of us!

For that reason alone I am eternally grateful to my daughter Anne Birgit for putting me on the path of the Mourn & Grief Foundation. Yes, forever … because no matter how much energy, pleasure and gratitude I have received from my clients and teams in my former professional life, that is almost nullified by the attention and gratitude I receive from our heroes.

To all these heroes … Chapeau!

(65) Understanding (2)

Maybe you’re not ready yet and you kind of like your life as it is today. That is OK too.. as long as you understand this… and… as long as your partner understands that too.

begrip - shutterstock_178311602“Time heals all wounds” is often said to people who shortly lost a dear one. “It’s not good when you keep greaving” you hear say when the loss was longer ago. “It’s not healthy when you couldn’t process your loss after so many years” is less often heard.

They say it will wear off, but is that really the case? It could be that the sharp edges of your grief disappear and you are able to live with that. It even could be that you are not aware, even after years, that you are still somehow processing your grief. That doesn’t have to be bad or unhealthy. My point of view is that others should be able to understand this. However, when those others are not empathic then you as a mourner should be able to understand that too. But… there you ask quite a bit from a grieving person. One condition is that you as a grieving person should be aware that you are still processing your grief… but… you might not even realize it!

An example for clarification.

From the first moment they saw each other there was magic between them. It wasn’t so much love at first sight, it went much deeper. It was as if two old souls met and also recognised each other at that level. They joined forces, were deeply in love and got married. Their lives went over high mountains and through deep valleys. People who knew them were jalous of them. A few, however, recognised the depth of their love and the price they both had to pay for that. A price they paid with love.

She died at a young age. He was devastated. He missed his buddy… his soulmate. He burried himself in his job. The work was challenging. Work he could put his heart and soul into. Work that gave him energy, lots of energy, and also was the means in order to be able to cope with his grief. He dreamed a lot about her, they had long talks together and recollected memories. Yes… still… after all those years and relations further. He was married several times now… and divorced again. He had reached a point where he didn’t need a partner at all… he was alone… and kind of happy.

One of his exes requested his help in order to find her current partner who was missing abroad. In his job he had the means and the opportunity to start a search and decided to help her. All end’s well, the partner of his ex was found and everyone continued with their own lives. When saying goodby the ex told him that she regretted their relation was ended at the time because she was unable to “reach” him. He was just as important to his ex as his deceased great love was for him.

It took a while before he understood. In retrospect, this ex was also important to him although in a different manner than his deceased partner. Both regretted the way things had worked out between them, but at the time it was not possible… and even today it is not possible… because they have different lives now as well as other relationships.

Again he dreamed about his great love and this time she told him to let her go. He shouldn’t keep looking back… but he should continue with his life.

There you are… you with the loss of the great love in your life while at the same time you yourself are the great love of your present partner… the thing is though… you are not aware of this. But how can you assure a steady relationship with your new partner without this awareness. What is clear, is that both sides should perceive this.

People are unique and the solutions that might be needed are also depending on place, time and culture. It could take even years before you are able to deal with your grief… and that doesn’t have to be bad. Processing emotions like grief and mourning takes time. Personally I have no value judgement about that; one person can do this faster than the other.

There is no ready recipy for all of us available, but understanding is about yourself and it starts by being aware that something is going on with you. As long as you can’t follow your intuition without even thinking… you can’t help yourself… nobody can help you. Only when you are aware that something is going on, only then you can start taking steps in assessing and solving the situation you’re in. However… is that realy what you want to do? Maybe you’re not ready yet and you kind of like it  as it is today. That is OK too.. as long as you understand this… and… as long as your partner understands that too.