Death of a Loved One
There always seems to be a period of reflection that occurs when someone someone close to you passes away. When its quick and unexpected there is definitely a shock affect, which just exacerbates the entire experience. With this, the mind wants to run with things like: I wish I had said how much I appreciated them, or I wish I had spent more time with them, or I wish I had made peace with them, or I wish I was kinder, or I wish I got to say goodbye. One thing that can really help avoid any ‘what ifs’ is to simply take the time to inform those that are close to you just how much you appreciate them.
Death of the loved one…
Recently my step dad passed away from an auto accident. In this experience, I had several similar questions come up myself. One of my main questions I like to apply to experiences like this is to ask myself, “What can I learn from this?”. This helps with reflecting and avoids thoughts of regret or internal critical judgment.
For my step dad, he was known for being helpful and giving to others and during his later years he focused more on living for himself. One of the things he mentioned before passing, was that he realized the trap of trying to please others when they are unhappy with themselves. An endless game of projections and blame. When he tried to please others, it was often at the expense of himself. To add, it led to endless blaming and lack of accepting responsibility. Often the result of feeding conditional love. If you have a relationship where the love is ‘conditional’ it will benefit you to question. Applying conditions around love is typically used for control and manipulation and has little to do with love.
This conversation with my step dad had reminded me of something Wayne Dyer quoted, which was “I’d rather be loathed for who I am than loved for who I am not” and that’s something I could not agree with more. Sometimes we spend so much time and energy on the illusion of what we think people want us to be vs just being our-self, and in that we eventually find ourselves stuck in living a lie, an unhappy one at that. Or worse, we waste our lives trying to please others which only leads to temporary gain. True happiness comes from being true to your self (higher self) as you focus on living your life, accepting responsibility for your life only, not others.
How the death impacted me…
The shock of having him here one day and gone the next, dealing with the aftermath, seemed to trigger a lot of questioning. Thoughts on life and death, the confusion we have with it all due to beliefs and the importance of making the absolute best out of this life experience. While these recent years have been some of the greatest in my life, I found much more that I myself could expand on. Its very easy to get comfortable with life, especially when were happy. When we expand beyond our comfort zone, there is so much more growth and experience that we open ourselves up to.
Another important aspect for myself was to reflect more on my life (and experiences) to ensure I am doing everything possible to live a life of no regrets. In addition to reflection, I was reminded on the importance of balance and taking the necessary pauses in life to observe and reflect in silence. There is so much here right in front of us that gets missed when we get stuck in the busyness of life.
Forgiveness – a life of no regrets…
Living a life that is true to yourself, a life of no regrets, involves a level of forgiveness for yourself and others. It’s important to remember that forgiveness is about you. This does not have to mean what the other did was right or wrong, it’s simply a process that allows you to release the pain and emotion from the past while keeping the wisdom. This is the only way that you can shift beyond the old painful thoughts and impressions, for true healing and change.
Think of it as a release process for you, allowing ‘you’ to let go of the emotion. Holding onto those old emotions only shatter the very core of your being and in that, cloud your ability to feel the freedom and joy that life has to offer. Often it seems when someone passes and there is unresolved conflict, the ones left behind are over loaded with guilt and regret for not making peace before they passed. If you have unresolved conflict with someone close it will benefit you to reflect on and release, for it only impacts you in the end. This was something I witnessed with my step dads family and unresolved conflicts.
Death and Life … one in the same?
Through my experiences with meditation and various out-of-body experiences (OBE), its seems there is no death and that this experience we call life is nothing but a training ground for soul experience and expansion. Its almost as though when we part from this life we but wake up in another. Perhaps this is why when we see people that have passed through an OBE, they look back at us with confusion wondering why everyone around is so sad, as they only feel love.
While death is a process of life it also seems to be a common fear. When questioned however, we find the fear of death comes from an unconscious fear of living life, fear of our own true potential and power. In this understanding, we find the only obstacle to living life is the self and we learn how to get out of our own way.
There is much freedom to living life when we learn to embrace it as it is, ever expanding and ever changing. It reminds me of this old adage saying “when you stop growing and changing you stop living”. The very act of holding yourself back is not only resistance to change, but to life itself, for life is ever changing. Enjoy this experience called life, live it to the fullest on your terms and inform those close to you just how much you appreciate them.
Until next time,