Monday, January 10, 2011
The Longest Road
I feel like I have walked the longest road this year. Thoughts and memories have been my year. I spent most of the year trying to live as much as I could. Trying to find myself under all the levels of pain that had taken over my life. I have never known how to grieve; I tabled those feeling deep inside and acted like they were never there. I never grieved the death of my first love, the loss of my innocence, my failed marriage, and then fatal cancer. By the time I had cancer I had enough grief, regrets ,and life tabled that I was not even a person. I had no love for myself or anyone else. I made mistakes that hurt people badly because, I couldn't come to terms with my own life. I feel sorry for the pain I caused during those years.
I spent 8 years of my life running from myself and the pain I was holding. I could not look in a mirror because I hated what I saw. After my first love died; I ran from that into a marriage that I forced because I was not whole inside. I thought having someone in my life would make me whole. When it didn't, I hated Matt for it. I blamed him for not making me whole. I can see that now; then I was just hurt. I hated that I still felt empty inside even after the birth of my first child. When postpartum depression set in I plummeted into some of the darkest places of my mind. I thought that maybe another child would solve my pain. I thought that by keeping my "white picket fence" whole I would make my past go away. I thought that I could just become a mother and keep the demons away. I never was emotionally available to my husband or my children. I couldn't connect to anyone. I lost my marriage, my friends, and never truly bonded with my children.
I found out I had cancer in the mix of everything and again I found a way to hide. I ran and this time I ran out of state. I packed up my children and left for Utah. I knew I had to face cancer but, I did not have to let anyone else be there. I hid in Utah not giving any information to my family and friends. I disappeared into a new reality with new friends. I didn't tell people about my past and thought that once again I had managed to run away from my self. When my cancer finally was considered terminal every wall I built tumbled and new ones built out of no where.
I moved home believing that my walls had been demolished. I started taking my parents to my medical procedures. They waited in the waiting room as pieces of me were taken. I thought for sure I had found myself. No the reality of it is that every wall that pre-dated cancer was still there. I had not let go of all the old fears. I could not allowing anyone close enough to see me because what if they saw a monster? It has been a slow process moving through the pain of the past. Letting go of the suicide of Mike was the hardest thing I have ever done. It is hard to believe that one part of your life can cause such a ripple in your life.
I know that dying is not just a possibility in my life it is a truth. It is a truth in anyone's life. I live with the pain of cancer everyday. I see my own life draining some days, but I know that today is not that day. I do not know when that day will come. I know that I will not spend that time lost in a fog that latest 8 years and prevented me from loving anyone even myself.
This last year has reopened my soul. It has taken everything out of my; then gave me back a person who I haven't seen since I was a teenager. It has been hard to wake up every day and live in the present. Feeling everything is harder than I had ever expected. It will never be as hard as hiding behind my walls though.
So, many people opened my heart helped me see again. I could not have done it without Jim. Who was my honest, trusting, compelling counselor. Who fought with me to see my walls. Who was there to help me cry. Who helped me see me for who I am now not who I was running from. Was always there to cheer me one when things were rough. He was my safety blanket in so many storms. I never had to hide there.
My mother kept by my side while making funeral plans, finishing up wills, getting my things in order in case the end came fast. She continues to be my rock and my best friend. I can not imagine my life without the strength of my mom. She has always been an example to look up to.
Chris took me out of my box and gave me adventure that I had never experienced. He showed me true friendship. We went places that I had never seen. Helped me trust my body again. Showed me the I was still strong. He gave me the choice to just be me with out cancer; I love him for that.
Sean came out of no where and stretched my life in ways I can not explain. I have always had an active dating life. I have never been much of a relationship person due all life's difficulties that made me believe that maintaining a relationship would be hard for everyone. That letting someone into my world was just going to lead to pain. I felt safe with Sean from the first moment I met him. He had a way of making everything okay. He looked at everything from a positive view and never judged me. He understood that everyone makes mistakes and was always open to talking about his own mistakes and depression. Sean made being "just me" a good thing. I am grateful to have him in my life.
Last year carried a lot of darkness and once in a while I still feel the empty darkness inside but, for the most part my personal sky-light is shinning right on through my past. I am blessed to have these months or years to feel truly alive.