Sadness creeps into our souls, most often without warning. We all have losses from the moment we are born, and have to learn to live with the sadness and change that loss and grief bring. Most times we have no choice about the grief and loss we experience, and the only thing we can choose is how we deal with a loss.
I found something I wrote after my beautiful cat Star died last year:
“I’m so sad I can hardly speak… but know it will get better”
And then I wrote on Facebook and twitter a few days ago:
“Everyone has sadness… it is what you do with it that determines your life”
I have usually found the most difficult part of loss and grief is learning to live with the change(s) to our life brought on by the loss. It’s the ‘How to live without our beloved husband, wife, child, pet, job, best friend… that is the challenge.
And the sadness.
Sadness can sit on our shoulders like a dark cloud, hiding the bright sunshine at the most inopportune time. As we recover from grief and loss, sadness comes back to haunt us, like a ghost in a nightmare, no warning, and sometimes no reprieve.
A piece of music, a scent, a place we have shared together…
I was not able to go down the street where my beautiful Star took her last breath for weeks; it brought up a refreshed and overwhelming sadness as devastating as the day we ‘lost’ her. I still have the urn with her ashes next to my bed, and find it incredibly comforting, whereas others might see this as macabre. But then, I do like cemeteries as well!
Living with a diagnosis of dementia certainly brings with it a fair share of sadness, both for the person diagnosed, and our families and friends. Learning to manage the sadness and the deficits or losses to our functioning is imperative for us to live well with dementia.
Creating beauty from sadness is what musicians, song writers, poets, writers and artists do well; often the most beautiful song lyrics have been written during the most desperately sad period of the artist. It is fair to say, without sadness, we may not really appreciate the really beautiful moments in our life.