Grief is Like a Ball in a Box – Lauren Herschel’s Metaphor

I have received permission from Lauren Hershel to repost this magnificent metaphor she shared on Twitter about the nature of grief:

“There’s a box with a ball in it. And a pain button.”

With appreciation to Lauren Herschel for these diagrams.

“In the beginning, the ball is huge. You can’t move the box without the ball hitting the pain button. It rattles around on its own in there and hits the button over and over. You can’t control it – it just keeps hurting. Sometimes it seems unrelenting.”

“Over time, the ball gets smaller. It hits the button less and less but when it does, it hurts just as much. It’s better because you can function day to day more easily. But the downside is that the ball randomly hits that button when you least expect it.”

“For most people, the ball never really goes away. It might hit less and less and you have more time to recover between hits, unlike when the ball was still giant. I thought this was the best description of grief I’ve heard in a long time.”  (Lauren Herschel)

Thank you so much Lauren Herschel for granting me permission to share this meaningful metaphor for grief.  I suspect it will speak to many, many people who have found themselves grappling with how to manage the ball in their box.

With deepest reverence for the unbearable ache of grief, Karen

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. tianatowens
    Mar 07, 2019 @ 22:27:13

    YES! Brilliant diagrams! XO

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  2. Linda Hennessy
    Sep 09, 2019 @ 10:03:29

    Thank you. Some people say they that grief should not be more than a year. I see it as a lifetime and thankyou for the ball I the box

    Like

    Reply

    • Karen Lanser
      Sep 09, 2019 @ 11:53:09

      Linda ….. I am so very grateful to hear that you are comforted to know that the grief from your loss cannot be confined to a specific time frame, but rather, can be honored in your heart for eternity. Sending you warmest condolences … 💙

      Like

      Reply

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