My foundation shifted and collapsed when he died.
I buried Mike, but it was me who was buried alive by the wreckage of our dilapidated life.
For a long time I thought that maybe if I stood still he’d come for me. I thought he would somehow find me and save me from the ruins of our lost life. Then, after a while, I realized that Mike was not coming back – ever. I recognized that I was on my own. I knew that I had to rescue myself. But, I felt disoriented and far from battle ready. Early on, Grief had the upper hand because my confidence and self identity were lost and buried deep in the rubble of our shattered life.
Even now, over three years later, I can barely process all the changes that have occurred. In the first few years, I’d catch myself instinctively rocking and clutching my collarbone – as I choked for breathe. In the early years, I continually worked to soothe my Soul from the stronghold grief had around me.
My life is not easy anymore. Those first two years, it was so overwhelming that my breath was chaotic. Since Mike’s death, everything has been disassembled and as a result, the landscape of my mind is constantly crowded and cluttered with thoughts of how to “fix” what’s been broken. Daily, I still struggle to remain grounded in the present because it is far less comfortable than the past. I fight to stay moored in reality because I continuously drift to a place in my mind where I keep him alive.
Clearly, grief continues to distract me from living. Participating in life is not longer instinctual for me. Now, life requires a certain amount of concentration from me. Making decisions was nearly impossible during the first year; and, still it is difficult for me. And this feels particularly awful because I used to be very decisive. I suppose, in fairness, it is hard to remain confident and self assured when your world implodes. However, you do learn what you’re made of when your world collapses. Everything you are is exposed. The fragments of who you were are scattered all around you.
Part of my identity survived his death because it was embedded in the debris of our old life.
I spent almost two years on my hands and knees collecting the shards of myself that survived his death.
But, I’m over it now.
I’ve grown bored.
I’m tired of combing through the litter of my old life.
Now, I am ready to do something with the tattered pieces I salvaged.
But, I am so damn tired from my efforts. Initially, I thought I would die from sadness. It has taken everything I have to survive his death and slaying grief these last three years haa left me fatigued. Reentering life requires energy that I simply don’t have. Most days there is nearly nothing left in me. I am beyond exhausted. Yet, I know that I need to find the self motivation to power me forward from the trauma that is his death.
When Mike died, the underpinnings of my Soul were revealed.
I was forced to stand naked in the wreckage of my life.
And, in short order,
I was required to take stock of myself while I was vulnerable and exposed.
This hasn’t been easy.
It’s been an exercise in grace that’s for damn sure.
Mike’s death briskly undressed me.
There is no better way to put it.
I was left completely stripped to the bone.
I struggled to survive and some days I still do.
But, now, surviving isn’t enough.
For me, it’s not sufficient to simply get through the day.
I want to live again.
Recently, I have begun to shroud myself in life because this is compulsory for me at this point.
I owe it to myself to come back to life.
I need to rise from my knees.
I’ve spent enough time scrounging the wreckage of my life.
There is nothing left to salvage.
Not one last thing.
There is nothing more to find.
The life I knew and loved has disappeared.
There is no returning to it.
It is over.
I can not resume where we left off.
There is no we anymore.
It is only me who is left to completely rebuild my life.
It is my responsibility.
But, it is hard to know what to do, and where to begin because I’ve been left in the middle of a huge mess.
Yet, despite the overwhelming task in front of me, I know that I have everything I need.
And, in actuality, I think I did all along.
I didn’t need to find a magic wand or a powerful amulet.
I am strong enough to live life on my own.
I can and will claw my way back towards life with grace.
I will use my grit to reinvent myself.
I can do this.
But, some days it is just plain hard.
Some days I just want to lay on the floor and cry like I used to.
Some days I want to just give up because I am just so damn tired of being sad.
But, if I give up who will rebuild my life?
All of this is up to me.
I am the architect of my future.
I’m in charge.
And, I can redesign my life into anything I want.
So with hard work, perseverance and faith I will rebuild myself from rock bottom.
Somehow, I will create a beautiful life – again.
And, so can you.
Building myself from my own wreckage,