#Highly Sensitive People: Do you have a reason for being?

Do you have a reason for being? This question comes to mind because I was told by a person, who I adore very much, that he didn’t have a reason for being.

I recently went to a funeral for Estelle, my sister’s mother in law. My family and I celebrated many celebrations with her and her husband Bob. She and Bob were a very fun couple to be around. They were very upbeat and you could tell that they were very devoted to each other. They did everything together. They were involved in many activities and Estelle was involved in volunteer work with children.

Estelle and Bob first met when they we ten years old and they were married for 67 years! Quite an accomplishment. They were true childhood sweethearts. How many people do you know who have been married this long?

Estelle was in failing health for the past few years. Bob’s reason for being was to take care of her. Her death was still a shock to him.  As you can imagine, it was a devastating loss for Bob.

At the memorial service, Bob told a heartfelt story about his life with Estelle. There truly was not a dry eye in the room. I’m tearing up as I write this post.

After the funeral, Bob mentioned to me that he had no reason to live because he lost his lifetime partner. I was a little flustered and very sad. I gain my composure and mentioned to him that he had a lot to live for. He had three very accomplished children, six grandchildren and many friends. I asked him if he would like to participate in happy occasions with them and see his grandchildren growing up. I also mentioned that he had a lot to teach everyone. Who couldn’t  benefit from a person who has lived a well lived life?

He seemed to feel a little better. I told him to be patient with himself and allow himself to grieve and vent his feelings to others. I also mentioned that it takes time to recover from a devastating loss.

Unfortunately there will be many times in our lives when we feel lost and lose our way in life. If put in its proper perspective, we all have a reason for being, regardless of what stage of life we’re in.  Isn’t life meant to be enjoyed? Can’t we contribute to others? These questions should be considered to put us back on our right path.

I’m interested in any thoughts or comments that you have. Feel free to pass this information on to others.

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2 Responses to #Highly Sensitive People: Do you have a reason for being?

  1. Ann Brown says:

    Cliff, so glad to hear you were able to bring a little peace (even only briefly) to Bob in his grief. Although I never felt like I had nothing to live for when my husband died (because I had a new baby to take care of) I can understand how people can feel they have no reason to live. It’s valuable in that case, I think, to ask the person what would their partner want for them ..? That may well put things into perspective.
    It may take Bob some time to be able to relate to all he has to offer the world (and to begin again to enjoy his place in it), but I wish him well in healing from his loss, and creating a new life for himself. In my experience, the loss remains, but it’s impact on your life becomes much much less as the years go by (assuming you have expressed all your feelings around it, and continue to do so, as they come up).
    Thank you for sharing this Cliff – I think it’s important to discuss these issues, especially for sensitive people, who feel things so much more deeply.

    • Cliff Harwin says:

      Hi Ann,

      Thank you for sharing your experience. It’s helpful to hear that the loss remains, but the impact gets less as the years go on. Death is very hard to deal with, regardless of your age, or whether your highly sensitive or not. We need different perspectives on this topic from others who have been affected by it.

      You brought out a very good point about asking the question about what would their partner want from them. This does put things in their proper perspective.

      Please let me know of any other ways of coping with loss.

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