Grief is the price we pay for love

The saying goes that “the best things in life are free”. I have always tended to agree with that statement.

That is, of course, until last Tuesday evening, when returning home from work and finding one of the two 14-week-old kittens that we have welcomed to our home as a wedding present to each other, had devastatingly passed away.

To say we were broken was (and still is) an understatement. My wife and I cried and howled for hours, trying to understand what had happened; could we have done anything to save her; had we been out too long; why is this happening to us… and so on.

We have since worked out that she most likely had a heart defect and her gorgeous little life was not ever going to be that long. The following day was spent mostly in bed, trying to make sense of it all in what is the most intense episode of grief I have ever experienced.

I know, for sure, non-animal lovers won’t understand this, nor would someone who has lost a human being close to them. Luckily, neither of those apply to me. Not to date anyway.  This really was as bad as it has ever got.

My great friend, business partner, peer, CEO, fellow money (and life) professional and all-round incredible human, Jo Little, messaged me in the fall out to this tragedy and said “Grief is the price we pay for love”. It stopped me in my tracks and it is something I have been mulling over since.

Isn’t that so very true. It made me then question that seemingly evergreen and unquestionable statement that “the best things in life are free”. I clearly felt the cost of love was absolutely nothing. Just turn up, dish it out a bit and it works out for you.

Clearly, I was very wrong. Everything costs something in life. Quite literally nothing, is free.


Alfie Mullan, November 2019