As many Latin cultures honor and celebrate deceased ancestors today on Dia De Los Muertos, I am moved to reflect on the impact that loosing loved ones can have on us. Grief and loss are deep painful experiences that have their own rhythm and process. Although we think of loss as a difficult and negative experience, it is often the case that profound loss can open us up and bring us closer to life. Our heart hurts when we lose someone because we are being separated from someone we love. In fact, that process of heartbreak can actually render the heart more open, allowing us to take in more of life around us. It can bring a deeper appreciation for what we have, the relationships that surround us, and the things we love about living. Losing someone also reminds us that life is finite which can realign us with a dedication to the present and to living as full a life as possible. I often hear clients say that after losing a loved one they recognized the preciousness of life more and began to appreciate it in a whole new way. Things can become brighter, crisper and more immediately palpable, bringing a new depth to our experience of the world. This does not mean the grief or pain goes away, but rather that it can be transformed and used as a portal to optimize the heart's functioning, through the tenderness and hurt being experienced. It is hard to allow deep pain to be felt, and it is good to follow your own pace with it yet it can also be a doorway to feeling life more fully and directly as your loss opens your heart to a more vast experience of love.