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When we experience the death of a loved one, we are forced into pondering our existence and mortality.  Somewhere I read ‘grief is a crash course in existenstentialism’ – indeed it is. I have never in my life thought more about the nature of the universe, my own spirituality, and all the big questions, as I have in the last six months. Never before have I felt an urgent need to have the answers. Now it is a constant burning within — what happens to us when we leave our bodies? What is it like? Do the people who have transformed feel the pain and sorrow of separation as we do?

Prior to this earth-shattering horror that I wish was simply a nightmare and not a living hell, I did not feel any strong conviction as to whether what we experience in life is simply random acts versus fated happenings. Certainly when good things occur  it is easy and pleasant to believe that they happen for a reason, right? But what about change, loss, heartbreak?

I have been told that with time I will discover the reason for my daughter’s death. Within this I have reached a conclusion — I choose to believe that life is random and things simply happen – not as a result of any grand design and not for any greater purpose. They simply happen – good, bad, and indifferent. People get sick, accidents happen; this world is no more perfect than we are as human beings.

Why would I ever want to think that my sweet Zev, at only eight years of age died for a reason? She died because she got sick; that is all.

I also choose to take my experience of this intense grief — all my sadness, pain, anguish, anger, and bitterness — and make as much good come from it as I can. I have chosen a framework that suits how I now view life; through this veil of loss which all my thoughts, feelings and acts are now filtered.

Perhaps when people say things like ‘with time the reason will be clear to you’ it is because they don’t properly know how to express what they truly mean, which, I believe to be this — with the passage of time the peices of your shattered heart , your broken soul, can slowly be put together again — you can find a way to make the life [and death] of your beloved not be in vain.

Life is all about choice. And it is what we choose to do with our heartache, pain, suffering and grief that ultimately shapes who we are.

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