It’s okay to experience grief in the middle of joyful circumstances

Grief is the experience of loss. It is natural to expect grief when we experience the death of a loved one or the loss of a job. But did you know that grief is also natural in the middle of many joyful circumstances?

There is joy when a child goes off to college… but also grief as childhood comes to an end. The teenager is no longer at home. The relationship has changed. Grief is a natural part of this joyful experience.

What about a wedding? Of course we can expect to feel joy, happiness, excitement, and nervous anticipation. But there is also grief. The two individual lives are ending as a new married life begins. Someone will move to a new home. The family of origin relationships will change.

Grief is not a sinful or bad experience, but it can be painful. There are typically emotions such as anger, denial, fear, and sadness. Many people engage in some odd behaviors when they are grieving, especially if they think it is wrong to feel grief at those moments.

Embrace the joyful blessings that God gives you, but don’t be worried if you find some grief is mixed into the process. It is natural. Every new beginning is the loss of the old life, the old self, the old normal. Expect the grief, and embrace the full experience.

Written by Jessica Hayes
iHope Executive Director