“Oh man, where has the time gone?” I say to myself as I look at the calendar and realize that I missed the one day of the year that tears me apart. I didn’t even stop and think on that day; I kept going as if it was any other day. I didn’t recognize the number on the calendar and break down. I didn’t curl up into a ball around 10 p.m. and wish the day could have been replayed and taken away nine years ago. I didn’t want to stay inside and hide from the world, instead I simply did not even realize that the day passed by like it had no significant meaning. Is this what healing feels like? Or is it simply that I am a bad person to not stop and think about the day you were tragically taken away from this world?
The world you loved so much. The color yellow and the song If I Die Young playing in the background. Nobody realized that your favorite song was actually a warning to us who were left behind here on earth. You did die too young and too soon. But this year, I didn’t even bat an eye or think twice.
“I can’t believe I missed it,” I say to myself as I am looking in the mirror, wondering who I am. Should I feel guilty or should I feel happy? Guilty because I didn’t stop to think about you and guilty because you didn’t get to live on with the rest of us. Happy because I am finally living in the present and not in the past. Happy because I am free of the sadness the day brings. I have never been on the edge of living and dying, but on that day, I am neither living or dying, I am simply surviving. But not this year. The day zoomed by like any other day of the week, with smiles and laughs and frustration and annoyance that a normal day brings. I guess this means I’m at peace. At peace with your death and at peace with your disappearance.
You see, grief isn’t an easy or a fast process. It isn’t something that just goes away, either. You are high, like really high, one day, and then the next you don’t feel like moving out of bed. For me, nine years is all it took, but for some it takes years longer. Keep riding that roller coaster, because one day you’ll be able to move through that day like it’s any other day. Not because you forgot this person or what this person meant to you, but you decided to live instead of dwell on the non-living, which is ultimately what they would want for us.