Everyone deals with loss in their own unique ways. Losing someone through divorce, death, or tragedy can cause depression, hatred, confusion, anxiety, isolation, and many other mental health issues as well as confusingly new emotions. Coping with the loss of a loved one isn’t something that anyone can prepare you for, it’s something that can hit suddenly or within time.
Finding peace within oneself is important to dealing with the emotions evoked by loss. Knowing that you are not alone can make all the difference. Being aware of how others cope with similar situations might just inspire you to cope differently and move through the pain.
Estia has lost her mother, her sister, her stepmother, and her marriage. Here is her story on how she coped with the cards dealt in her life:
“My name is Estia Riekert and I have dealt with loss a lot in my life. I really hope that by sharing my story it can uplift someone. And also confirm the belief that everyone goes through heartaches but that it’s possible to smile and love again.
As a six year old, I lost my mother to cancer. I remember missing my mom, at a young age the loss didn’t quite made sense. My dad remarried and then I got a new mom. She was a wonderful lady. Unfortunately, she died about eight years ago (also to cancer). About fifteen years ago, my sister committed suicide. This struck me to my core. She was my best friend.
Losing these three important people at pivotal moments in my life, I had to emotionally deal with loss from an early stage. I went for counselling a few times but my true anchor was and is my belief in God. The power and agility he gives me help me cope with situations and makes me strong.
I got married, and found myself in an abusive situation. Finding the strength – I left. Going through a divorce was just another kind of loss I had to deal with. No matter how hard it was, I couldn’t stay in the marriage because of abuse.
Five years after my divorce and being a single mother to my daughter, I got remarried. My daughter then went to live with my ex-husband and his new wife. This was extremely hard on me, since I got accustomed to being with my daughter all the time.
Throughout my life I struggled a lot with this loss. Struggling with rejection and coping with the bad hand life has dealt me made me feel horrible. One day I realized, that the loss, divorce, and death does not change my whole life. Becoming bitter, hateful, or toxic will not make anything better.
I made a choice and so can you.
Through this loss, I have learned a lot. I learned that:
– I am a strong person
– I can withstand pain and longing
– I can help others through their own loss
– I can choose to have a good day, every day
– I am a child of God and I can find my strength in Him.
Things are much better now. My daughter is back in my life. Even though I still my miss my two mums and my sister, every single day, I have chosen peace and joy.
For the past 10 years, I have been in a committed and beautiful marriage with my husband, Ludwig. Ludwig and I actually went to school together, at the time I never really paid attention to the short little man. As fate may have it, after school he contacted me with arrangements for our school’s 10 year reunion. He was very persistent that we went on a coffee date. I was hesitant, since I’ve been in so many relationships that just didn’t work. At that moment I was content with being a single mom. Regardless, God has sent me a kind blue-eyed man that loves me and my children unconditionally. He supports and understands my hurtful past as I support him in all his endeavors.
Sometimes, it only takes a song, an advertisement, or a small reminder of those I’ve lost to let me burst into tears. These small reminders can create an unbearable longing for my moms and my sister. I have learned to adjust and let the tears flow. I’ll allow myself to accept my emotions, have a good cry, light a candle in their memory and then, wipe the tears and get on with living life.
Life is good. I had to go through these hardships to learn that sometimes life gives you bitter lemons. It’s your choice whether you want to make lemons out of it. You will overcome if you persevere, adapt, and find better ways to cope.”
Estia’s story is a great reminder to us all, that the way we deal with loss and tragedy in life is what will make all the difference. Finding healthy ways to cope with trauma is what will help you see the beauty, love and joy in life.
There’s no guideline written on ‘how to deal with loss or divorce’, we can learn from each other. Knowing that we are not alone in life, will give us the power to persevere.
Thank you, Estia, for being vulnerable, opening your heart, and letting us into a small lither of your life. With this I’d like to encourage our readers to share, in the comments below, how you deal with loss in your life.
Love and Light –
One Million Quotes
Estia Riekert – South African Writer, Poet, and Legal Secretary. Wife of Ludwig, Mother of Danielle and Matthew, Daughter of God. Estia believes that every test is a testimony and hopes that by sharing her story she can uplift and encourage those who have dealt with loss.