04 May Why?
Why did this have to happen?
When we don’t have answers to impossible situations, a human response is to cry out, “why?”
Why did my dad get COVID-19? Why can’t I see my parents trapped in a nursing home? Why?
And when we don’t have an answer to “why,” we often will make up an answer – blaming ourselves, others or the Divine. Perhaps that is a way we can experience some semblance of control when we feel scared and helpless.
We might think some of the following thoughts:
“I had a fight with my dad the day before he got sick. Maybe it’s my fault he’s in the hospital.”
“If my mom hadn’t been so stubborn in her desire to go the grocery store she would not have become sick.”
“If I had been going to church regularly maybe God wouldn’t be punishing me like this.”
We cry out to God, or Yahweh or Allah: Why didn’t you stop this? Why are you punishing us?
Some pastors may seem to have the answers – they blame us for “our sins”. Yet we know that when we stand back, this is not real. Love isn’t punishing us with this virus. The Divine One isn’t out to get us.
It isn’t our fault when bad things happen. We cannot control the appearance of a new virus any more than we can control a hurricane. But we can do our part to help prevent its spread and using our minds to figure out how to prevent the corona virus and treat it.
If we can accept the fact that bad things happen — they just do– then we can let go of the question, Why. We can relax into the peace that comes as we do our part and let go of what we can’t control. We can stop fighting ourselves, others, and the Divine, and instead spend our time and energy healing ourselves, each other, and the world.
Carol Pitts, PhD, LPC, LMFT, CPCS, is Clinical Director of CHRIS Counseling – DeKalb. She can be reached at Carol.Pitts@CHRIS180.org.