Love so deeply, hurt too much.
“I can’t live without him.” “I need her back” . “He was my everything”. “She was my life.” When we love so deeply and we lose our love, the hurt is so profound it feels like an empty whole in our soul. The words “my heart is broken” could not feel more true. How do I help? How do I show a client who is in the darkest hours that this too shall pass? The truth is, the pain they are in is a testimony to the depth of love that they had for their lost love. My job now, hard as it is, is to get them to find a way to accept this. To honor the past and let it go.
There is no denying that we yearn for a life to share with another. We are humans who do feel complete when in the arms of a soulmate. Note, I say,“feel complete”. The truth is we are complete with or without a partner in our life. Now I need to get my heartbroken client to see this, feel this and believe this. Heartbreak is a journey and loss comes in many forms. It can be the death of a loved one. Or it can be the break up of a relationship. Either way, it takes you through all the five Stages of Grief, Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance. But unlike the death of a loved one, when a partner purposely leaves you, that person becomes an integral part of the grief process and all the stages to healing. Often bargaining and anger go hand in hand. “If you come back I promise I will change!”. But they don’t. So the anger begins. Then the anger at each other can turn into a hurricane that takes you both deeper and deeper into break up hell. Often just when you think you are out of the anger stage and on the road to acceptance, something triggers you to start all over again. You see them on Facebook moving on without you. Or one too many glasses of wine causes you to pick up that phone and call them. You start cycling backwards again. You don’t believe it’s true. Surely its just a phase and they will come back to you. You are back to denial! Then you get angry again. Then eventually, the depression hits.
The depression is the darkest part of this journey. But it is also the biggest step to acceptance. Hopefully you have stopped the bargaining. The anger is no longer covering the ache in your heart. You see the truth, that this relationship is really over. The next step is for me to help turn the depression into mourning. Depression takes you down into a black hole. Mourning is sadness. Sadness is what I need my clients to find first. “I am so so sad over what is no more. I am so sad that I lost my friend. I am so sad that the dreams I had for our future are over.” Once I see my client truly mourning the loss of this person in their life then I see the light at the end of the deep dark tunnel for them. For after mourning comes acceptance.
The mourning can take a long time. When you love so deeply you hurt so much. It is a cycle. Or what I like to call a ladder to healing. Some days we can pull it together and focus on the future and we go up the ladder three steps. Then other days something hits us and we take a step back down. Hopefully it was three steps up and then only one step down. Then the next time it is four steps up and only one step down. All of a sudden you realize that you are almost to the top. You are almost healed. I tell my clients to keep looking UP! Keep looking UP! Then one day there are no more steps to take. And ain’t the view pretty up there! You are standing there all by yourself! You are healed.