When you fall in love, no one tells you about the pain that comes with losing your partner for good.
When you start a family, no one tells you about the loss you will feel when your child’s heart stops beating before yours.
When you are at the height of your career, no one educates you about the pain that comes with being made redundant.
This is because everyone around you is too scared to tell you about the pain that comes with loss.
Unlike happiness which makes us feel warm and fuzzy, the pain of losing can bring you to your knees if you let it. Loss can tap you on the shoulder with no warning or happen over a period of time without you realizing it. With a flick of a switch, it can shatter your world to a million pieces.
No one wants to tell you this.
In a world where we are addicted to being happy and staying happy, it is easier to stay oblivious to the pain that comes from loss. However, the problem that I have with this approach is that we stay ignorant of the benefits that can come from losing something or someone you love.
You see, a couple of years ago I watched my friend Mia go through the most tumultuous divorce.
Her husband of twenty years told her he didn’t love her anymore and that he was leaving her for someone twelve years his junior. If that wasn’t enough, he attempted to take Mia’s dignity away in a court case where he tried (but eventually failed) to prove that she was an unfit mother.
Understandably, the breakup took a vicious toll on Mia.
Not only did her self-esteem take a beating but her plans, hopes and dreams were suddenly chained inside a marriage she had now lost forever.
For twenty years, Mia defined herself as a wife and a mother. She never had to work because her former husband earned enough for her to stay at home. He believed that the chief role of a woman was to cook, clean, look after children and not be educated.
So when the rug was ripped out from under her, Mia found herself in limbo letting the pain from her divorce dictate her every move. The pain ravaged through her body and took aim at everything she knew and loved.
This was until one day when Mia saw a woman holding a baby walking down the street. Mia loved babies and adored her time as a new mother so she took it upon herself to introduce herself to the pair.
She found herself enthralled in a conversation about all things new motherhood. Suddenly, the pain that came from the loss of her marriage felt lighter and she was given a new purpose in life.
Years on, Mia is now a qualified midwife and single mum and I could not be more proud of her. Her loss allowed her to embrace a new side to herself that she never knew existed. One that could only be felt after the pain of her divorce.
I asked Mia a few days ago whether she would go through the loss of her marriage again. She laughed and said to me,
“In a heartbeat. The pain helped me discover a new part of me. I now am more than just a mother and a wife. I am Mia. I have my self-respect back.”
On Mia’s wedding day, no one told her that there was a prospect of divorcing her husband. Everyone was too focused on the nuptials to tell her that there was a chance that her marriage would not last the distance.
But, the universe knew what was best for Mia.
Without its intervention, Mia would have stayed in that marriage. She would have played into the hands of her former husband and not have become a midwife.
Mia wasn’t going to save herself so the universe had to save her.
Yes, the divorce was painful. Yes, Mia found it difficult to breathe some days. Yes, she went through months of not knowing how to move forward without the man she had dedicated twenty years of her life with.
But when the pain subsided, Mia thanked the universe for knowing what was best for her and getting her out of a marriage that was limiting her growth and the effects were life-changing.
The pain that comes with loss is the universe’s way of telling you what is not working in your life. At your most vulnerable, you have no choice but to put everything into perspective and see things for how they truly are.
Use the pain that comes from losing your relationship and channel it into finding out who you truly are, without them by your side.
Use the pain that comes with losing your job because you now have a second chance to revolutionise your career for the better.
Use the loss of your parent because you now have a chance to live life like they taught you to.
But most of all use the loss you have suffered to be a phoenix which has no choice but to rise from the ashes.
Stefanie Costi believes that enthusiasm is a driving force to every story of success. She wants to be your positive energiser when your motivation levels are low. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact her on Instagram, FB or Twitter.
Image courtesy of Camila Cordeiro.