top of page


Fear and Gratitude After Loss

One of my biggest realizations from losing my father at a young age is the parallelism between fear & gratitude.

Losing someone we care about is undoubtedly one of life's most profound and challenging experiences. It is an emotional rollercoaster that can take us through various feelings. I thought of one specific way grief affected me: in how thin the line is between producing more FEAR that I may lose again and the GRATEFULNESS of realizing what we still have and the fragility of life.

I recently spoke to Ashley LeMiuex, and we spoke about this specific topic. She said how she lives in both quadrants of fear and gratitude. It doesn't have to be mutually exclusive, although if you ask me, I'd much rather live in gratitude! Sometimes, I realize how quickly someone's life can be taken, how quickly my life might be taken, or how we can lose just about anything, whether it's a biological death or not. After having it happen to us, this thought process can ignite anxiety and fears of losing again and the reality of life and death. Or, the flip side is we can be more grateful that we still have life to live and time with the loved ones that we still have. Living in that lens compared to fear is a different trigger and trajectory. And it's okay if you still have that fear. I hope you don't stay there and can flip the fear into gratefulness.

Ultimately, grieving is a unique and deeply personal process for each individual. The transition from this initial stage of raw sorrow can lead us down many avenues outside of fear and gratitude, but for this article, this is where we'll stay.

Living in Fear

The fear that can follow a loss is often rooted in various aspects. Fear of more loss can be prominent, causing individuals to become overprotective of those they still have in their lives. This fear can lead to constant anxiety, reluctance to engage in new relationships, or inability to move forward.

Additionally, the fear of facing life alone can be overwhelming. The absence of a loved one can create a sense of isolation, leaving one with feelings of abandonment and an inability to connect with others. This isolation can lead to further emotional withdrawal and loneliness, further perpetuating the cycle of fear.

Living in Gratitude

On the other hand, loss can also be a catalyst for finding gratitude and meaning in life. Gratitude in the face of loss is not about denying grief or pretending everything is fine; it's about acknowledging the preciousness of the time we had with the person we lost. This gratitude can inspire us to live our lives more fully, cherishing the relationships and experiences we have.

Loss can make us appreciate the fragility of life, teaching us to savor every moment and not take our loved ones for granted. It can lead to personal growth, a deeper understanding of our values, and a desire to live in alignment with those values. This gratitude can manifest in acts of kindness, giving back to the community, and forging new, meaningful connections with others.

Choosing Your Path

It's important to understand that the choice between fear and gratitude is not always conscious or straightforward. Many factors, such as personal resilience, support systems, and previous life experiences, can influence this choice. However, it is possible to navigate towards gratitude by actively working through the grieving process and seeking professional help when needed. Therapy and support groups can provide valuable tools for processing grief and finding gratitude amidst the pain. There are some resources below for you to look into if you're looking for support outside of DEAD Talks Podcast.

Final Thoughts

Fear and gratitude are two emotional pathways that can emerge after loss. (Amongst a million other things!)

While fear can lead to a cycle of isolation, anxiety, and a sense of impending loss, gratitude offers a path towards appreciating life, deepening relationships, and finding meaning in the face of sorrow. Grief is a natural response to loss, but how we choose to navigate it ultimately determines the course of our healing and personal growth.

In the end, the choice between fear and gratitude may not be entirely within our control, but by actively working through our grief and seeking help when needed, we can increase our chances of finding the strength and perspective to embrace a future filled with gratitude and love, even in the absence of those we have lost.

Grief Resources To Consider:

The New Normal is a FREE peer-to-peer support group to connect with people who may be going through similar experiences inspired by co-founder Benjamin May, who I had on the podcast that you can watch here on YouTube or listen on Apple or Spotify.

Untangle Grief with Emily experienced her grief and created this platform to help navigate people through loss. ho I also had on the podcast that'll be out in a couple of weeks!

Click HERE for all DEAD Talk links to newest episodes and to follow us across social media.

NEWEST EPISODE with talented author and poet, Whitney Hanson, who has reached MILLIONS with her powerful words. She came on to share her experience with grief and loss when she was only 16:

- David


bottom of page