#93: Happy Sadness
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Yesterday I experienced happy sadness.
All day I felt terrific, enthused and energized. I listened to gospel music most of the day and received a feeling of well-being and acceptance. The day was a happy one. Then I answered a post and had the happy sadness arrive. I began thinking of my dad who died at the young age of 48. Then I remembered fun times with my mother and other relatives. I'm sure you've done the same thing. We all have memories of those we loved.
While in this happy sadness state, a group member sent me a link to the gospel song "In the Garden" which brought on a flood of tears. Happy sad tears that flowed down my face as I recalled opening Dad's Bible after he died and finding that song's lyrics on a piece of stationery folded inside at the 23rd Psalm.
I never knew Dad as a religious man. That discovery was a pleasant surprise.
As I played that song over and over on a continuous loop, emotions I must have still held inside found a release. Yes, I miss him, as I do my other relatives and friends. But I was happy for him, too. Whatever your beliefs or non-beliefs, having hope is a precious thing to hold on to, especially when you're lying on a stretcher in a hospital knowing you have only minutes to live.
Anyway, that was last night. This morning I played the song again, had only a few tears and realized that often, many years after a loss, our grief will appear, unbidden, and make us happy sad.
If you've read any of my previous messages, you know I have not gotten very personal in these blogs. Instead, I have tried to inspire, encourage and support readers. I have tried to show true compassion and understanding. But today's message begged to be written, if for no other reason than as a cathartic release.
If you experience sadness over a lost loved one, please know that happy sadness is a good thing. Embrace it and feel the pent-up love for your lost relatives or friends. Cry if you want, but let go of the grief that frequently maintains a hold on us long after our loss. Until, that is, something as insignificant as a song helps bring the grief to the surface and allows us to appreciate happy sadness.
Be well. Have a blessed week.
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"The word ‘happiness’ would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness." Carl Jung