There is only one thing that is equal for all humans. We come from different DNA pools, cultural experiences, religious influences, national origin and environments. Even twins have different life experiences and personalities. However, every person has the same twenty-four hours a day and the same seven days a week. Time is the one true common experience shared by all. Thinking of hours and days as vertical lines and the horizontal lines as people and experiences crossing those lines of hours and days, we can conceptualize that our lives are somewhat like a woven fabric. Each unique life is woven by the individual’s experience. When something happens that interrupts that weaving process, perhaps a death or a trauma event, that event becomes a “hole” cut or burned into the fabric of life.
What do we need to do to stabilize the hole so that that event does now destabilize the fabric of life in the future? We need to avoid large quick stitches which create a “pucker” that distorts the fabric below. Any seamstress will explain that to fix a hole, you circle the hole with tiny stitches to prevent unraveling. Tiny steps and activities create a new edge around the hole. Those tiny stitches are weeping, writing about the event, thinking about how this event will impact life ahead in a positive way and talking to a non-judgmental persons. It will not be one quick trip around the hole. It will be multiple trips – but eventually the hole will be stable and new beginnings can and should be woven into the life of the person who is mourning the event.
The hole should not become the centerpiece of the fabric, but should be seen as an interesting event which can be viewed from a greater distance as an event which impacted, but did not destroy the fabric’s overall texture. An interesting place where change took place but from which new joys bloomed.
The older we become the likelihood of several such holes and interruptions in our life will become. We can actually thrive when we recognize that everyone has or will have holes in their life. We should not look at them as a collection of bad things – but rather events that have shaped the overall texture of living. Looking for things to be thankful for and for opportunities to share the healing power of God in the midst of loss brings contentment. It is what we do to repair and how we process the impact of the hole that makes grief recovery possible. Spend time stabilizing the hole, but know that God is calling you to use that event to bless others and to positively influence other for his Glory.
God did not say it would be easy. He did say He would be with us. Weave on! Great things are ahead.
—Sharon Fox 5/22/17