By Tom Zuba —

I believe that the death of someone we love cracks us open.  I believe it’s supposed to.

Death shatters us.  It breaks us into a million tiny pieces.  And as the minutes turn to hours, and the hours turn to days, the days to weeks, the weeks to months, and somehow, someway, the months to years, we slowly hunt for the shattered pieces of our self.

Some of the found pieces we reclaim realizing, with relief and amazement, that they still fit.  We need them.  Try as we may, though, at times with much sadness and disbelief, we come to accept the new truth that some of the old pieces no longer fit.  Those pieces no longer serve us.  We must discard them.  And remarkably, amazingly, along the way, from time to time, we discover new pieces.  Sweet, new, wonderful pieces that seem to make the new us more of who we are now.  More of who we are becoming.

And along the way we dare to ask the questions.  We have to.

Is there a God?  If there is, what is he?  Is he even a he?  Perhaps he’s really a she, or an it, or maybe a they?  And if we decide that there is a God, we need to know what he/she/it/they had to do with the death of the person that we love so much.

And we ask about prayer.? Does it change the outcome?  Can the right prayer, said at the right time in the right way by the right number of people…change the mind of God?  If I had said the right prayer in the right way would the person I love still be alive?

And what happens when we die?  What really happens?  Do we continue to exist?  Is there a part of us that’s eternal? Or is this all there is?

And heaven?  Is there a heaven?  If so, where is it?  Is the person I love that has died in heaven?  Is she aware of me?  Can he communicate with me?  Can I communicate with her?

I think it’s in the asking and the answering of some of life’s fundamental questions that we can learn to make peace with our new life.  But I think that the process must be a gentle one.  We ask.  We answer.  And like trying on a new shirt or a new dress, the answer we come up with may fit for a while…as we continue to find the tiny pieces of our shattered self.

And then the day comes when the answer that served us so well…no longer rings true. And there’s a newer answer rising up, to the tough question we dared to ask our self.  And when we try on the newer answer, we feel a new level of peace.  It fits better.  As we learn to live our life…with our newly emerging new self.

Death cracks us open.  It’s supposed to.

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Tom Zuba

Tom Zuba

Tom Zuba believes that loss cracks us open, giving us the opportunity to consciously participate in the transformation that awaits us. Tom’s 18-month-old daughter Erin died suddenly in 1990. His 43-year-old wife Trici died equally as suddenly on New Year’s Day 1999 and his 13-year-old son Rory died from brain cancer in 2005. Tom and his teenage son Sean are learning to live a full, joy-filled life, one day at a time. He is an author, inspirational speaker, and workshop facilitator who appeared in April 1999 with best selling author Gary Zukav on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Tom appeared on the radio show “Healing the Grieving Heart” talking about “What Do I Do Now; Dealing with Multiple Loss.” To hear Tom being interviewed, go to the following link:

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