Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult -- once we truly understand and accept it -- then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters. ~ M. Scott Peck, MD
[Reviewed and updated September 8, 2022] It doesn't matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was. ~ Anne Sexton
A reader writes: I'm 35 years old and was nine years old when I lost my father. I live my life in a perpetual state of loss, it seems. I'm able to find a lot of joy, but it's always shadowed by an inevitable sense of sadness and loneliness. Sometimes, like right now, it just hurts and I don't know what to do with it. I've had years of therapy, with various therapists; I've been in 12-step programs; read numerous books on the subject, but I still live with this deep sense of loss. I guess I just want to know -- WILL IT EVER GO AWAY??
Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart. Don’t scratch for answers that cannot be given now. The point is to try to live everything. Live the questions for now. Perhaps then, someday far into the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer. ~ Rainer Maria Rilke
When life turns difficult, a common way of trying to get around the pain is to try to think our way out of the situation. The problem with this is that it assumes the process of effectively dealing with emotional upset and spiritual challenges is linear, sort of like a Betty Crocker recipe, in that one step necessarily follows another in order to get the desired outcome. The truth is that the process of inner healing is inherently non-linear and is often contradictory.
[Reviewed and updated July 23, 2023] He who has a why to live can bear almost any how. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche
A reader writes:I have never been a religious person. But it seems that when you have such a tragedy in your life like losing a husband of 40 years that you seem to turn that way because you are looking for an answer. All the books that I seem to read talk about the plan that God has in store for you. Why I get so upset is that I was completely happy with my old plan - being with the love of my life until we were, say, 90 years old (not just 60). So why take my wonderful plan away and make me so miserable because He has a plan for me?