I heard a quote the other day in a based-on-a-true-story movie called “Puncture” about this dirtball, functioning drug addict but completely ingenious lawyer, that resonated so deeply with me I can’t stop thinking about it.
“Just because we can’t really get over the dark parts doesn’t mean we can’t get to the good ones. Sometimes the brightest light comes from the darkest places.”
Over the past 5 months I’ve been looking for light. But really, it’s all I’ve been denying myself.
Guilt is a tricky thing. On one side, it can help us see the difference between a right decision/action and a wrong one. But on the other side unprecedented guilt can eat us from the inside out like a parasite.
Guilt is undeniable and unavoidable.
It’s hard to not feel guilty when you are trying to live without your child. Hell, it was hard enough to have a life while she was still here without feeling guilty. And now every ounce of satisfaction, happiness, every minute my mind is occupied on something other than her the barn door opens for guilt to flood in.
It’s a balancing act between staying present and living in my head; it’s a balancing act that is constantly uneven.
Every time I let the light in, the darkness of guilt dulls it.
I can’t say this is a unique experience, feeling guilty for having any sort of distraction or joy, but by nature I am a guilty feeling person. It’s something I’ve always struggled with, and something I’m constantly trying to over come.
Recently, when good things come my way I have been forcing myself to say thanks to Lil. My faith is so shaky so to say thank you to God.. Buddha.. Or any other deity would seem hypocritical. But I know one thing, beyond question, without a shadow of a doubt; Lilee lived. And if the afterlife does exist, she has to be the one behind any good fortune coming my way. It’s her way of holding my hand.
So I smile and try my best to let the light in. Taking each day one step, one breath and one glass of wine at a time… Okay, okay maybe two glasses.
So I guess, the lesson of the day, brought to you by the letter ‘G’, is not to let the guilt consume you. We are the ones who have to live. I’m the one that has to live. So even though the dark days aren’t over, and they won’t be for a long time to come, there is peace in saying thank you to the loved one that is gone.
There is light in the darkness.
With that being said.. How do you find that light?
I tried working and had a psychotic breakdown. Not even from job stressers. Literally from the normal and superficial tasks of each day. Wake up. Shower. Get dressed. Go to work. Come home. Cook. Clean. Go to bed. Do it again.
I had such an important roll as Lilee’s mom, and one day that was just over. done. No kid. No family. Just a house to myself with nothing and no one depending on me.
It screws with you, Waking up to nothing. But I found out, after getting a job, that waking up to something that was so unimportant (by comparison) was so much worse.
I’m just not ready to be what society has deemed normal, and I might never be.
Unfortunately, when you quit your job, your bills don’t just pay themselves.
I’ve been incredibly, beyond-words-blessed to have a few months of rent covered, so I know I won’t be homeless, but I traded taking care of my financial responsibilities for taking care of my emotional well being. it was the scariest and most difficult decision I’ve had to make since Lilee has passed. But I did it, because I couldn’t survive half assing a job and coming home to melt down every day, and that’s the course I was leading to.
So now I’m in debt, trying to find ways to work at home, and thanking my lucky stars for the generosity of the people around me who probably didn’t even know I was struggling financially.
But I’m happier. My spirits are higher, my energy level is up and my demeanour is more positive.
It might have something to do with rarely wearing pants, but I think it’s because I have the freedom to be who I need to be in the moments I need to be it.
I feel so selfish not just going out and getting the next fast food job that pops up on craigslist. But I really feel like not only is it a public service keeping my crazy ass away from people, but it’s also time to take care of myself. If I don’t take the time now, it will be worse in the future.
Grief is a wild beast that doesn’t go away, as time goes on we just find ways to tame it. But it will always rebel, always push back. You just have to learn to live with it.
One small, shaky and uncertain step at a time.