This is a letter I wrote a few years ago, for a friend of mine who ended his life when we were 19 years old. I’m hoping that sending this out into the universe will help me let go.
You were one of my closest friends that year.
Standing on the balcony, without looking at me, you told me that you were in love with me. I didn’t know what to say. I just didn’t feel the same way. I didn’t want to hurt you, but I knew I didn’t want to lie to you either. I told you the truth, and I could see the disappointment and hurt all over your face. When you walked away, I wanted to come after you, but I didn’t.
You were in the house right across from me. Before I fell asleep that night, I thought of you. I didn’t know that it would be your last night. Why didn’t I come see you? I should have come to you.
But I never got a second chance.
Why couldn’t I tell how you were feeling? I’m usually good at seeing beyond masks. So then why couldn’t I see past yours?
I’m so angry with you. Why didn’t you talk to me and tell me what was wrong? Why did you leave me behind? It’s not fair.
I had just been dealing with my dad’s suicide attempts. And then you went and succeeded. How was I supposed to feel when I had just lost a few of the most important people in my life over a 2 year period before meeting you, and had to deal with my dad, and then you?
But how can I be mad at you when I have been wanting to take my own life since I was a little girl? That makes me a hypocrite. But I never followed through. I stayed when every part of me wanted to leave this life. Why couldn’t you? Why did you have to leave? Sometimes I hate you.
I couldn’t even look your parents in their eyes at your funeral. How could I tell them that I was the reason you were gone? Because that’s how I felt at the time. That maybe I was the reason you finally gave up. Sometimes I still feel like that. It seems like the only explanation. I couldn’t bear to look at your picture. I just sat there. Numb. Empty.
I was so angry the day after you left, when they told us all that God had called you home. I wanted to stand up and yell at them. How dare they say that! That was the beginning of the end of my journey of faith. I know you would probably be disappointed, but I just can’t believe in a god that allows so much injustice and suffering.
Everyone else seemed to be over it after a few days, and carried on as if it had never happened. But I just couldn’t. Nothing felt real, and everything was a blur for the next few months. Life seemed to go on around me, people talking and laughing, my best friend didn’t even know how much I was struggling. I couldn’t talk about you. I wasn’t interested in anything. The voices all around me, seemed like they were miles away.
My heart is broken today.
Never again will I see your warm smile.
Never again will I hear your contagious laughter.
You were only 19. Your whole life was ahead of you.
You’ll never get to see another sunrise or sunset.
You’ll never get to feel the cool breeze on your skin.
You’ll never get to see the beauty of a baby being born.
You’ll never get to see the random acts of kindness that warm the soul.
You’ll never get to experience the love you deserved.
I’m so sorry for letting you down.
I’m sorry I couldn’t save you.
You’ll always have a space in my heart.
I’ve never liked that word. Grief. Even as I’m typing it out, I’m cringing inside.
But as a friend recently told me, words are just that. Words.
The morning after having written my post ‘Basking in the Sun‘, I woke up with this feeling of intense sadness. It’s followed me through the entire week, and I’m still feeling it.
Random spurts of crying accompanied it. Even at work, while focused on what I was doing, I was acutely aware of the aching inside me. And sometimes I couldn’t contain it any longer and the tears would just spill out. Obviously not wanting anyone else to see, I would go the bathroom, and let it just come. But only for a minute or two, and then I’d compose myself and walk out smiling, as though nothing had happened. I’m grateful that it’s not easy for people to tell that I’d been crying. It only becomes noticeable if I’d been crying for a long time.
Even while out with a good friend yesterday, I couldn’t get rid of this sadness. I was spending the day with her, her new boyfriend and his family. At one point I pulled her aside and told her that I was struggling emotionally. She gave me a big hug and told me that it’s okay to feel the way I am. That it’s normal. She was so caring and and supportive. I felt safe. I don’t usually tell friends or family that I’m struggling with something, but I’m slowly learning that it’s okay to be vulnerable with people closest to me. I’m glad I told her, because she helped me realize that it’s okay to feel these emotions and to deal with them.
The reason for my sadness is I’m missing someone that was a constant part of my life for years. I’m grieving for the life I had. It wasn’t the good life, but it’s familiar. I miss the place, the people, the person… Just everything. Now I’m in a new place, new environment, and nothing is familiar. I know I’m starting to build the life I want, that I’m slowly starting to find my feet, but I’m overwhelmed. I feel as though I shouldn’t hope too much, or allow myself to feel happy, because it will just come crashing down around me anyway. I feel like I don’t deserve to be happy and to have a happy life. That it’s just not meant for me. The day after having written the above mentioned post, I felt guilty. What right did I have to feel that good? What right do I have to feel good, when so many other people are suffering and in pain?
I haven’t really allowed myself to fully experience the loss of all I left behind. I thought I had. I thought I had let it go. But I haven’t really. Because most of the time I would just push it away or play it down when the thoughts and feelings would surface. I would tell myself that I’m fine. But I’m not fine.
I’m allowing myself to really sit with, and experience these emotions today. To sit with the sadness and grief. With the unbearable pain. With the thought that I made the biggest mistake of my life. That what if all we needed was this break? I’m sitting with the longing to go back to my old life. To the person who’s love was conditional, admitting that she took it away sometimes in order to punish me, but at least I had that love sometimes. I never felt safe when I was living that life. But that life feels safe now. Safer than where I am at this moment. But I know it’s just the grief talking. That if I go back, nothing would have changed. Maybe it would be different for a little while, better, but then what? So many ‘what if’s’ consume my mind, and I’m allowing myself to ask and answer those difficult questions.
It’s so hard and painful. And I’m so unsure about my future.
Woke up this morning with a deep sadness that seemed to have taken over my entire body. I couldn’t move. I don’t know how long I just lay in bed feeling a heaviness that pinned me down and wouldn’t let go.
Then it hit me. I’m missing something. Someone. Today I feel the loss of all I recently left behind on a whole other level.
I’m missing a piece of me.
I miss our “children”… Our two dogs. They could drive me crazy at times. But just looking into those soulful little eyes, was enough to dissolve the anger and frustration. Those little guys who would climb all over me and lick me half to death whenever I was sitting or laying on the floor crying.
I miss our house. The way we redecorated so that I could feel it was my house too. The kitchen that I always complained about being too dark. The living room where we would sit and watch series after series. Movie after movie. Every room with it’s own special function and memories. The garden, where we pitched a 10 man tent just to see what it looked like, then took it down that same day, afraid the dogs would damage it.
I miss our little town. Where I knew most of the roads and the different ways to get to specific places. Where I knew where the cops would usually sit and then drive like a normal human being when approaching those areas. The mall that was always too busy. Where it felt like most people living in the town didn’t work, because how can a mall constantly be busy, even at 10am on a week day?
None of this ‘ours’ anymore. But now only a part of my memories.
Most of all I miss the girl I had both loved and hated at different moments during our relationship. The little things she did that I loved. Even those annoying habits that drove me crazy.
This sadness is crushing. I haven’t been able to get rid of it, not even for a moment. It’s always there. Hidden. Behind a wall that’s slowly starting to crack. It’s all there. Building up. But I desperately need a release right now.
To the girl I left behind. The girl I walked away from. The girl who will never read these words:
I miss you so damn much.