Sometimes I forget how incredibly blessed I am. I married the girl of my dreams and we had two awesome sons. I work in a career I love. I live among towering pines and fill my lungs continuously with clean mountain air. I get to drive a jeep. And there is bacon in my refrigerator and chocolate in the cupboard. I am surrounded by friends and family of incalculable value.
Really life isn’t bad.
But here I find myself on a Saturday morning sitting and looking for stuff to do. Feeling discouraged and somewhat down… scrapping either for some internet fight about something peripheral… or begging for some level of encouragement. And trying to figure out how this all fits into losing my younger son to suicide two years ago.
I think for the most part the intense pain and shock of that moment I learned of his death has subsided… I think it took sometime to sink in and in time that level of loss and utter devastation just became a part of me… sort of the background noise of my life… That level of stress isn’t something the human psyche can maintain at intensity… and so deep down I think it figures some kind of work around, that for the most part keeps things seeming to be manageable. And if every so often it comes to the surface or becomes a focus for that moment… that becomes normal as well.
I can’t live in that moment. And of all the moments in my life… it isn’t the one I would choose to visit too often.
But living in the now… in the current moment, as simple as that sounds… becomes at least a bit complicated. Because if one moment in the past is wrapped up in intense pain, with grief shading everything subsequent like reverberations in some long tunnel, the moment now and every other moment carries with it that persistent ache of what will now never be.
And that is life in the happily ever after.
And really if you think about fairy tales… and all the crap and grief the protagonist goes through… even if you marry a prince and live your life out in a castle, you still grieve your dead parents, and perhaps even your asshole stepmother and her daughters. The princess will be dogged with those moments that will never be. Her perfect present will always be colored by that imperfect past.