You can have BOTH, AND. You can BOTH be sad for someone else AND happy for yourself. In times like we are in right now with all the calamity and tragedy, it's easy to lean into survival guilt.
What do I mean?
is the deep longing, loss, pain, and grief I have around my kids being out of the house. I feel that, then immediately diminish it by thinking: "how can I even go there, missing them, when they are still in my life and my brother actually lost his 17 year old daughter to death, and here I am whining about mine being in another state or another country. "
Can I BOTH miss my kids, experience my own loss AND hold space for his loss as well? Shall we not acknowledge our own current realities because someone else's are worse or different?
My partner Jay the other day said, "I am living the life of my dreams right now and I can't share it because people have lost their homes to fire, my buddies are fighting the fire and everyone is so sad. Can he be BOTH compassionate and empathetic AND celebrate the great state of his life and retirement? Must we be either or and push away our own current reality?
One more I've dealt with:
I lost my brother to suicide and alcohol addiction. Every sobriety birthday I have being a recovered addict myself I have this looming question: Why him and not me? Why did I live and he die, coupled with this huge burden not to waste my life or the gift of recovery I've been given. Can I be BOTH devastated the same disease I have killed my baby brother AND thankful that I'm alive without the feeling of guilt that somehow I'll waste it?
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Please post them!
It has been my experience that we can be BOTH aware and present to someone else's reality without it diminishing our own AND be present to our own current reality even if it's different. I would like to encourage all of you, if you're in great pain share it, and also celebrate others joy at the same time and vise versa. Otherwise it seems we shall all miss our full experiences because history proves we can't all be at the same place at the same time.