Who's Next?

When loss hits, it shakes our world. Everything seems to change. Suddenly, we realize we could lose anyone at any time. Fear begins to invade.

From the Grieving Heart:

I miss you. 

If this could happen to you, what else might happen? And to whom?

Frankly, it's terrifying. Anything could happen to anyone at any time. One minute you're here, and the next you're gone. What kind of world is this? Who’s next? Is it me?

I want to take everyone I care about and go somewhere safe where nothing bad can ever happen. No more loss. No more departures. No more pain and grief. 

I know there is good all around me, but I can't seem to see it right now. All I can think about is you. Like a rubber band, I can distance myself from grief for a little while, only to be snapped back to this unpleasant reality of life without you. 

I don't like this life right now. I don't like myself. I miss my old life. I miss me. 


We begin to wonder who's next... 

We know we’ll all die someday. We know all those we love will one day say goodbye and depart. Yet, we shudder to think of such things for very long. We hunker down, hoping to somehow keep death and loss at bay.

If loss hits close enough and hard enough, our stunned hearts naturally begin wondering where the next blow will fall. Who? When? Where? How? We start to sense our own mortality. Fear is often a part of grief. 

Being wired for relationships, it's not surprising we try to avoid loss at all costs. We walk through life unconsciously trying to control people and circumstances to minimize any unpleasantness, hardship, and emotional pain. When loss strikes, and we realize how little control we have, our souls begin to shudder with the possibilities of what might happen next. 

In times of grief, fear will likely come knocking. We can't stop the fear from coming, but if we can recognize and acknowledge it, perhaps we can keep it from busting in and making a home in our hearts.

Instead of reacting by trying to run, hide, or deny its presence, we can acknowledge the fear. "I'm afraid." We identify it, if we can. "I'm afraid I'm going to lose another loved one." Simply acknowledging and identifying the fear will help unplug its power. 

Fear will come. It is a natural and common part of grief. 



When fear comes, I'll try to acknowledge it, identify it, and release it.  

Adapted from the newly released Comfort for Grieving Hearts: Hope and Encouragement for Times of Loss. Click here to watch a brief video about the book. 





About the Author

Gary Roe is an author, speaker, and chaplain with Hospice Brazos Valley. He is the author of the award-winning bestsellers Shattered: Surviving the Loss of a Child, Please Be Patient, I'm Grieving, HEARTBROKEN: Healing from the Loss of a Spouse, and Surviving the Holidays without You and the co-author (with New York Times Bestseller Cecil Murphey) of Saying Goodbye: Facing the Loss of a Loved One. Visit him at www.garyroe.com.

I'm Grieving, Now What?