It is rare that anyone gets through this life without some serious grief and pain. The longer you have the privilege of being alive, the greater the possibility for pain.

Having children opens you to the enormous possibility of joy, love and validation. It also opens you up to the possibility of immense pain in various ways.

Real serious grief can be like a constant presence in your heart and your life. So much so that while it may be compartmentalised, in those moments when you are not distracted it can actually be debilitating. It comes back to the fore and you might be surprised by its ferocity. It can also affect your behaviour in ways that surprise you. You observe yourself behaving in uncharacteristic ways. Unchecked anger, frustration, withdrawal from the normal joys of life.

Practicing silence, solitude, prayer and gratefulness helps.

Enjoying quiet moments of pleasure, reflection, song and food helps as well.