“Ambiguous Loss”

[Community Bulletin Board, Somerville Public Library, October, 2015 ]
I’m learning how to live with ambiguous loss. Since Christmas, I’ve been enrolled in a crash course.

I’m learning how to mourn someone I haven’t yet lost.

I’m learning how to mourn what has been lost yet never was.

I’m learning how to live with ambiguity. And both-and. (Early lessons learned : it’s exhausting! And pervasively sad.)

As I learn to live with ongoing stress and grief, I’m learning how to live with the Good Enough. I’m shooting for a C- in this class; maybe a solid B on a really good day.

I’m learning how to go with the flow.

But maybe all of us are living with ambiguous loss. The loss of weather we can recognize. Loss of seasons we remember. Loss of polar caps. Song birds. Clean water where and when we always expected it to be. And yet good ol’ Mother Earth keeps circling the sun, doesn’t she; for many of us—God, not all—life just keeps rolling along; doesn’t it? Maybe the pervasive anger all around us is about our collective, pervasive sadness. But maybe we can’t quite admit to that sadness. It’s SO much easier to be pissed! Our loss isn’t obvious, maybe. Yet we’re all mourning a Mother Earth who, yes, is still here but irrevocably changed.

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1 Comment

  1. Dear Patricia,

    Hi, there, Patricia, my For Always so, so very dearly special and dearly precious friend and sister who you are For Always so, so very much!!!!!!!! I’ve been bursting with such very, very eager anticipation to very, very joyfully respond to your ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL blog post article with my lovingly heartfelt, sensitively caring, very thorough and detailed comment! I just couldn’t wait-FINALLY I am able to, sister!!!!!!! I’ve been really sick sisterfriend-UGH!!!!!!!! I’m very gradually trying to get better, sisterfriend-UGH!!!!!!!!! I’m so very tired of being in bed and resting and am feeling really restless, Patricia! What a beautiful and profound title with this deep topic for your great blog post article, sister! Ambiguous losses are very urgently important issues in our lives that have a strong way of being frequent happenings in our very lives which we must for sure contend with, sister! I’ve been praying so, so much for you, sister, and for all of your dear concerns of ambiguous loss-I know that it can’t be easy!!!!!! I pray for and think of daily and very often of you, my so very dearest friend, Patricia, and for all of your very dearest and darling Loved Ones!!!!!!! I For Always keep you covered in my very earnest prayers sending positive energy all of your way as you make your way through stress, grief, and the utter ambiguity of it all, Patricia!!!!!! The picture which you have featured here is very deep here and is so pertinent in how it describes and explains in such a succinct and cogent manner how domestic violence isn’t at all this apparent, sisterfriend!!!!!! I think of the domestic violence I experienced with my family of origin who I am estranged from for very, very many years and how I am a survivor of having grown up abused in every way in what I endured and experienced. There was domestic violence with my parents and their very abysmal marriage and I had all sorts of abuse in every way from my two older brothers who are six and seven years older than I am. I am the youngest in my family of origin and the only daughter, sister. I have the ambiguous but very necessary loss of being estranged from my family of origin to keep me safe even my very life, sisterfriend!!!!!!!!!!! Our Good God has let me know somehow that it isn’t safe to try to reconcile with them. I love my family of origin very much and dearly, and I pray for and think of them daily and often!!!!!!! I forgave them years and years ago but it’s just not safe for me to be around them!!!!!!!! I feel like an exile because I feel like I can’t even go back to my hometown where I grew up because of my family of origin and the safety issue for me. This is for sure definitely an ambiguous loss for me, Patricia!!!!!!!

    I have had the ambiguous losses of having some friendships that have fizzled out that are healing and healthy losses for me but very, very many of my friendships remain so very strong and sturdy!!!!!! What blessings for me that bad friendships are a very rare occurrence for me over the years, Patricia!!!!!!!!!! I’m healing from unresolved grief but I have more work to do for sure. I so, so very much love and like the great link which you so, so very graciously and generously provided about this powerful book regarding unresolved grief, sister. I need to read this very fine and excellent book for sure, my friend Patricia!!!!!!!! I have grief over my declining physical abilities over the years!!!!!!!!! I mourn this loss, sister, as I have become even more physically disabled over the years as I have become older, sister!!!!!!! I remember so, so very well when I was a lot younger even with having some physical issues back then that I was still back then able to go for relatively long walks and that I walked on my own power without needing a walker back then.

    Sisterfriend, you are so right on, on point, and make such a relative point here when you say that but maybe all of us are living with ambiguous loss. I, too, feel ambiguous loss with the undeniable climate change which is occurring, the changes in air and water quality, and the adverse changes in our weather patterns all throughout our very country and world, my friend!!!!!!! Yes, sister, our good ol’ Mother Earth does very much indeed keep circling the sun, and our So Very Good and Loving, Most Powerful and Sweet Spirit God is For Always there for each and every one of us as life just keeps rolling along with our very life with the Life which is Spirit For Always, sister!!!!!!! I, too, am mourning for our Mother Earth which is still here but is very much indeed irrevocably changed!!!!!!!

    Wow, sister, what an ABSOLUTELY AMAZING and so, so very beautiful, inspirational, uplifting, and enlightening blog post article which is such a greatly immense and blessed joy, Patricia!!!!!!! And YOU PATRICIA are FOR ALWAYS such an immense and such a sheer joy and blessing in my life for me so, so very much!!!!!!! You are just so, so very dear to me, my so, so very dearly special and so, so very dearly precious sister and friend who you are For Always so, so very much, Patricia!!!!!!! Yay for us sisterfriend and yay for our sisterhood and friendship Patricia!!!!!! Yay!!!!!! I thank Spirit For Always for you, Patricia, and you are my very joy and blessing!!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!

    Please have a superbly super Saturday, a wondrously wonderful weekend and week ahead, sister, and may all of your days be so, so very especially blessed, my friend Patricia!!!!!! YOU PATRICIA and this so very cool blog post article have helped this sick woman feel even better and lifted up my spirits since I had been feeling down because I wasn’t feeling very well!!!!!!! Thank-you so!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my sisterfriend Christian white woman Patricia, with Peace and Love To You For Always, my so, so very dearly special sister, and with Blessings and Even More Blessings To You For Always my so, so very dearly special friend,

    Your sisterfriend Christian lesbian black woman in the spirit and solidarity For Always, Sherry Gordon

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