I have some friends and they were in a band.
When we talk about loss we will undoubtably have many feelings that we associate with what that might mean. This will be based on a variety of personal experiences and the experiences of others around us.
At this point it would be helpful to break down a few terms: Let’s define what we mean by loss:
- Loss definition:
The state of being deprived of or of being without something that one has had
- Bereavement definition:
the objective situation of having lost someone significant through death
- Grief definition:
deep or intense sorrow or distress /the primary emotional (affective) reactions to the loss
It starts when we are babies, we have a drive to be attached to our mothers. It is no coincidence that a babies vision is the same distance as from breast to mums eyes. It’s the first bond we make. From then on we become attached to people and things. We are drawn like moths to a flame to the people that accept us or to the group that allows us to feel part of a tribe.
In the book “Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us”, Seth Godin puts it like this:
“A tribe is a group of people connected to one another, connected to a leader, and connected to an idea. For millions of years, human beings have been part of one tribe or another. A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate.”
Belonging to a people or a group is fundamental to our existence.
One of the biggest stressors for anyone can be the loss of, or fear of loosing, a secure attachment or place of belonging – regardless of what that is.
Attachment is thought to be the most important source of a security, self- esteem, self-control and social skills.
As you can see from these definitions the loss experienced by someone is not necessarily defined by the loss of a singular person.
I remember vividly when, after 8 years following my Dads death, I lost his wallet that I had been using. This sent me, at the time, into a blind panic and when I realised it was gone for good, led me to relive the bereavement experience all over again. However, regardless of our own experiences of loss we have to put aside our own journeys and expectations of what it was like for us and journey with the person or people who have experienced the loss.
So today I am left reflecting over a late night in a club having listened to my good friends last ever gig as Do They Collide. They’ve been together for 10 years and have had times when they have gigged more than others. The reality was that it was approximately three years since their last gig but since then haven’t officially called time on the band. So they decided to go out one more time.
Watching and listening to them before and during the gig they were experiencing real loss over this entity. They were staying friends but were having, because of circumstance, having to end. I would not be surprised in the least if they got together and recorded/performed again. But it won’t be as Do They Collide. It will be something else.
There is power, even in a name, because in that name was belonging and in that belonging a tribe. So as I reflect on last night I am thinking about their loss and realising that loss can come in so many different forms and we have to be mindful that it may not be obvious to us what that is.
When we experience a loss of our tribe we are left realising there is no place like home.