HUG Corner: Thought for the Week

Location : North Houston

Healing After Loss (Martha Whitmore Hickman)

"Everything in life that we really accept undergoes a change. So suffering must become love. That is the mystery."

-Katherine Mansfield

It doesn't happen right away. We are too preoccupied with our own deprivation and sadness. And we need time to mull over our lives, to go over and over what we have lost, what we are going to do, what the future may hold.

And it probably doesn't happen - that suffering becomes love - because we will it so.

But all the time we are struggling with our grief and its meaning, the seeds of a new compassion are germinating in our psyches. Because we have suffered, we are tender-hearted toward others. Because our own defenses have been peeled away, we have a new perspective on what it means to be vulnerable, and we recognize the vulnerability of others. Because we recognize how closely we are all connected to one another, in a way we become porous, transparent - people whom the light shines through.

And the light, which is love illuminated, reaches those around us and perhaps they, too, become able to take the risk of loving. Together we realize that "no man [or woman] is an island." We know that, while we are still sad, we are not alone, and that love, often forged out of sadness, is life's greatest gift to us all.

Love is a mystery in which I dwell, grateful and unafraid.

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