Trailer- Life Journeys: Reclaiming Life after Loss


The day I lost Carolyn, I don’t think
I could have seen myself a week out, a year out,
10 years out. I don’t think my mind or my heart
was able to grasp it. Early on,
right after my brother’s suicide, I felt like I was drowning. I remember sitting on the couch
and literally thinking, “How can the world
possibly still be spinning?” My first initial thought
was just blind anger. I even yelled at him in his casket,
that’s how mad I was. We have that splinter in our side,
and it’s never going to go away, and it takes a lot of strength to be able to continue to move
day to day with that pain, and I’ve learned to do that. When Aiko died, I felt that a piece of my heart
was missing. I realized
that even with that missing part, I can still be whole. I’ve learned to be comfortable
with that paradox. There are
good days and bad days. There are
good hours and bad hours. You need to take care
of what’s important, but what’s important is you. My husband was a soldier. He was a soldier who died
on a battlefield of a different sort, and I didn’t want that to be
a shameful thing for my children. On this journey,
we become a different person. If her death hadn’t occurred,
if I hadn’t processed her grief, if I hadn’t gotten involved,
I wouldn’t be who I am now. All in all, I’m standing on one foot
as far as life goes, but I’m not wobbling, and the other foot
will come down eventually. If we could do anything for the people
that are new to this journey, it’s to kind of give them
that beacon, that hope, that knowledge that,
wherever they are right now, it’s going to be better.

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