I have been thinking about the word “lost” quite a bit lately. “When We Are Lost” is the title of the new book I’m working on and it is something I have felt more than a few times in my life.
When we lose someone we love – our children, our partner, our friends or family – we often feel lost in grief.
When we make major life changes – move across the country, start a new job, change careers, go back to school, etc. – we can feel lost and uncertain.
Sometimes feeling lost finds us – life is moving along as usual and slowly we begin to feel dissatisfied, restless, hollow, unsure if what we have is really what we want.
Lost has been a companion of mine again for a while now. In March of 2016, I picked up my life, my business, and myself to replant myself in a new area of the country. I left an amazing community of friends and a counseling practice to create something new in a new place. I did so because I was starting to feel as if I was losing myself – in old patterns, in old grief, in complacency and fear, in subtle dissatisfaction.
Most of the time, we think of being lost as a bad thing.
I’m not really sure it is.
When my children died, I had to get lost in the grief so that I could find the beauty of living again and remember that love never dies. I had to lose myself in grief for the motherhood I wanted in order to find peace with the motherhood I was given.
There was a point in time when I left my chosen profession of counseling. It was a painful and confusing time. But it took getting lost in order to find my way back to the career I love – supporting those experiencing grief and loss.
When I started to lose myself in my old home a couple of years ago, I had to get lost in a new place in order to find myself again. I can’t say I’m fully there yet and I will admit that I still feel lost much of the time these days. Yet, as hard as it has been and continues to be, I feel more alive than I have in years and I feel truer to me than I have ever felt.
Grief is a time of lostness.
Change can feel like getting lost.
Maybe there’s not specific reason yet we feel like we’re stumbling in the darkness.
And, sometimes, being lost is exactly where we need to be.
Just maybe somewhere in that lostness is exactly where we find ourselves again.