Whether it is getting a bad grade in English class, leaving home to go to college, or
losing a loved one, we all experience sorrow. Sorrow is some kind of pain or distress of
the mind caused by a loss or misfortune. It is a part of life that we all must learn to deal
with. People cope with sorrow in different ways. Certain people let every misfortune that
they encounter get to them. They flip out if they get a C on one of the many minute
assignments in a class. If they get a traffic ticket, they think the world is coming to the end.
People who deal with sorrow like this are not being reasonable. Do these people believe
these minor flaws in their day-to-day living are going to have a life long affect on them?
They do not have to be sad, but they choose to be.
One day I got my second traffic ticket in my first year of driving. As soon as I
looked into my rear view mirror and saw the officer turn on his flashing lights, my heart
sank into my stomach. The officer asked if I knew why I was being stopped. I was
speeding and I knew it. The officer went back to the car and began to write the ticket,
while I was sitting in my car thinking. At first I thought about how much trouble I was
going to be in and how much money it was going to cost me. I was very depressed. Then
I got to thinking. What's the big deal? It's just a little traffic ticket. Sure, I may get in
trouble, but who cares? It's just a small detail in my life. I can whine and complain, or I
can focus on the more important things in life. Why waste away the days feeling gloomy
and depressed? What good is it serving me to feel this way?
Sorrow is like a rock being thrown at you. You can choose to watch it approach
you until it hits you right between the eyes, or you can out of the way and let it pass you
by. Of course different levels of sorrow exist and some are harder to deal with than others,
but most day to day misfortunes don't have to be the cause of sadness and depression.
Sorrow is divided into four groups; sorrow, grief, anguish, and woe. Different
people can tolerate different levels of sorrow.
The first group, regular sorrow, is the least extreme. This is the feeling you get
during the last days of summer when you know school is just around the corner. You may
experience sorrow when you get an awful grade on a test. Many people deal with it quite
well, but some do not. Some people still let these small things get to them. And if they
don't let the sorrow go, then it could bring them to the next stage, grief.
Grief is more acute and more distressing than sorrow. You may experience grief
when you move away from home and you miss your friends. Grief is usually a little harder
to shrug off than sorrow, but many people can do it. It may occur when you lose a loved
pet. Most people will be a little sad for awhile, but they will usually be able to overcome it.
Other people do not need much time at all to get over the loss. It's not that they loved the
pet any less than everyone else. It's just that they don't let things get to them. They don't
want to walk around everyday being depressed about everything. They choose not to. But
most people can only endure hardships to a certain level. This brings us to the next stage.
A very extreme form of grief is anguish. This is when an event tortures and
terrifies the spirit. This can occur when a parent dies tragically in a car accident or for me,
losing one of my Soundgarden CDs (ha ha). Not many people can deal with anguish.
Some people can overcome it, but it usually takes a very long time. Anguish is a form a
form of sorrow that is very hard to cope with, but if it can't be overcome, you may
Woe is the most extreme form of sorrow. It is prolonged and inconsolable sorrow.
It may happen when your daughter gets kidnapped on her 13th birthday. The thought of
not knowing whether your daughter is dead or alive or where she is can ruin you. Woe can
destroy your life. Many people who experience this kind of sorrow turn to drugs to deal
with it. It can often lead to suicide. This class of sorrow is very, very hard to deal with,
but some strong people can do it with time.
Bad things happen to everybody, but not everybody lets those things get to
them. Everyone has a choice. Sorrow can control you, or you can control sorrow. It's
your choice. People need to learn to deal with it properly. When a bad thing happens to
them, they need to ask themselves, " Ten years from now, how will I look back at this
event? Will it have effected my life as a whole? Was it really a very important factor in
my life? " Most causes of sorrow will not have an important impact on a person's life.
Sorrow is not a fun emotion to experience so why choose to have it. People need to take
control over their lives. I think the old Chinese proverb states it best; " You cannot prevent
the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building
nests in your hair. "
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