Chronic sorrow is the periodic recurrence of permanent, pervasive sadness or other grief related feelings associated with a significant loss. (Eakes GG, 1998).
I have often wondered about how long sorrow would hold up residence in my heart. Since the death of my daughter seven years ago I can say with the utmost certainty that it will always be a part of who I am. Sorrow has taken up permanent residence in my heart. Specifically over the space where my lovely daughter holds a forever spot. Scared by loss, and maybe a little broken, but my heart still beats on. It still feels love. It still leaps for joy when something or someone brings happiness into my life.
I have come to understand that sorrow and happiness can live harmoniously in one space if, and only if, they are both respected. Given their time to be heard. Chronic sorrow seems like a disease, but really it’s just a label for a mother’s broken heart. I wouldn’t say that I have a pervasive sadness about me. It’s more like moments in time that I reflect on a life once known, and a time that some days I’d love to hear her voice or her funny laugh, but pervasive sadness – I don’t think so.
Do I think pervasive sadness happens to some? Absolutely and that breaks my heart for them. I understand how it can happen. I do believe if I had not fought hard to come out of the fog of sorrow and into a life that I can bring light to my daughter’s memory – I too would have fallen into this pervasive sadness. So if you find yourself there – seek help. Talk to a professional, write it out – do something. The best years after loss can come but its hard work. At times can be exhausting. But with a lot of support, faith and love you can make it to a space where the sadness and sorrow take their rightful place but does not permeate your soul.
I’m a living testimony that while I have lost much, I want to live on doing the work I was made to do. I want to fulfill my destiny. Just like my sweet Brittany. She is the light that shines brightly and keeps reminding me that I have to stay focused on the good in the world. That is my prayer for you.
Until next time,