Make it to the End of the Day
August 17th is the 3rd Anniversary of the worst day of my life. My son Alex died that day in 2012.
Anniversaries. You make your way through another year and then, 365 days later, you find yourself smack in the middle of the same setting where events played out that just about destroyed you. As the day approaches you tell yourself that it’s just another day but it doesn’t help. The same flowers have burst into bloom in the yard, yellow and mauve blossoms reaching for the sun; the summer is slowly winding down in exactly the same way it did in 2012. It’s as if your 364-day escape from the scene of the grief has been in vain because look: here you are again.
He would have been 26 this year though he will never be any more than 23. This year “23” sounds younger, feels farther away. You know he’s with in spirit you but you just want to hug him. The worst part is that no one knows the grief that lives behind your mask. Grief is a lonely place.
You want to reach out to a friend but you don’t want to bring anybody down. You cry but the crying helps only for a little while. You don’t feel like doing anything besides rolling up into a very small ball. It feels as if there is a weight on you that will never lift away. You wonder again if you’re going to make it. Maybe you will die of a broken heart after all.
The day wears on. Somehow you find yourself in the kitchen preparing supper and you realize you did it: you made it to the end of the day.
Some days, that’s all you can hope to do. You don’t have to know how you will survive a lifetime without the person you long to hug but never will again. You only have to hang on a little while longer. You only have to make it to the end of the day.