Learning to Grieve the Past and Plan for the Future

“It has become evident that a very crucial element for successful aging is the ability to mourn for prior states of the self. When one can accept aging and its changes and mourn for the past the result can be liberation, a freeing of energy for current living, including planning for the future. – George Pollack

[ANNA TRANSLATION: HELLO PEOPLE! Don’t ignore the past, don’t over-cling to the past; face it. Do what you need to. Heal. Accept. Make amends. Once that’s taken care of, you have the mental, physical, emotional energy to BE PRESENT and DREAM FUTURE.]


This may sound odd, very odd, but I find this quote to be moving and inspirational in my present life. I do realize that relatively young, and yet this quote brings me much hope and healing.

Even as a young girl I would journal about what it would be like to be old and loose my 12-year-old self. Sort-of dreading the passage of time, and pre-mourning something I hadn’t even lost. I think it comes from enjoying my present so much that I don’t want to think I will be without it. Living in this sort of process and mindset, however, is rather depressing and debilitating. It is the opposite of “liberation, and free-ing”. It’s grasping so desperately at something we cannot. It’s wasted energy.The quote suggests that we mourn loosing our past, and the realization that things will never be the same, but it does not recommend the pre-mourning that I do. Some would call this predictive grief. I think it is what I do to lesson the blow it may have on me. I haven’t decided if it is effective or not yet.

I appreciate that the quote emphasizes, not downplaying or undermining the changes that occur, but rather ACCEPTING aging and the changes. I must come to a point of accepting my own aging and accepting the aging process in general; that it happens and that it cannot be avoided. Nor should it be avoided. We have been designed with a life span intentionally. I may not fully understand why it is that our lives start at one point and end at another; yet I can still accept it. I accept many things I do not understand, and this will be another that I must accept.

I want to feel the “liberation, a free-ing of energy for current living”, I want to let loose the burden of worry and need to understand. I want to be free to “plan for the future”, which at this point in my life… this is a lot of future to be planned for. I am really good at holding onto my past, decent at enjoy the present, but pretty terrible at planning and dreaming for the future.

Most of all, I want to be of good practice living free. For if I cannot do it now, how will I approach life at age 80? I must get in good practice now. I must live age 25, age 35, age 45, age 55, age 65, age 75, age 85 and age 95 free to dream and plan for the future. I must live every day with the fullness and urgency as if it were my last, while also keeping hope and peace of living for eternity.


8 thoughts on “Learning to Grieve the Past and Plan for the Future

  1. Thank you for this! It’s amazing how freeing it is to live in the here and now instead of in the past or the future. We have to be careful not to get ahead of God.
    I think I struggle more with “what was” though. I have a hard time letting go of the past sometimes. But I’m thankful for the healing God has brought me from various things in the past and how FREE He has made me by helping me embrace where He has me in life now. I could never thank Him enough for the current blessings in my life. I appreciate my family and few close friends more now than ever!

    1. I agree. It is difficult yet FREEING, and it makes appreciating the blessings we have so much more easy! The more I live out a heart of gratefulness free from the past, the more I appreciate my friends and family too 🙂

  2. Sometimes we’re called to stand the night watch. During the night watch you can see the darkness of the past and the glory of the future. I think I learned this from Albie Pearson.

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