“Looking towards the future, we were begging for the past. Well, we knew we had the good things, but those never seemed to last.” — Modest Mouse
A few nights ago, I found myself in a familiar position.
It was summer. I was sitting on a porch watching the moon rise. I was crying to my dad about my perpetually broken heart.
To me, healing evokes images of tiny angels gently kissing your ankles as you rise to the light, but in reality, it’s picking out sharp rocks that have lodged themselves in a scraped knee you got from YOUR SISTER HITTING YOU WITH A BICYCLE.
Everyone is going to get hurt, and everyone is going to get hurt badly, at some point.
Some people never get over it, while others are more resilient, but one thing that doesn’t change is time is going to carry on, with or without you. There is no pause button.
That was a hard lesson for me. I wanted my world to stop turning until I had everything perfect and shiny again—when life was worth living.
But that’s when days turn into weeks, months, and then all of a sudden, you’ve lost a year to the past, even though it was full of love, laughter, and butterflies that still had the power to make you blush.
Well, I’m done with that.
At the age of 60, my dad is going out more than I am, finding every opportunity to laugh and dance in the middle of restaurants when a song he likes starts playing.
He created that.
When something breaks us, we have choices. We can constantly visit the past, or we can bring the past forward. First kisses, stolen blankets, and beers over bonfires are just as real now as they were when they happened.
Instead of being gutted by memories, they can be used as flashlights in the dark, as reasons why life is still good.
Time is a freaking circle. The people we love and the things we do never leave us.
Be like my dad. Stack your days up with events to look forward to, even if it’s just a Milky Way waiting for you in the freezer.
Grief will be with you as long as you’re healing, so don’t deny yourself any chance to be released from the anchor.
I miss my old life. I miss 17 different, old versions of Sarah. Most of all, I miss certain people who I love tremendously, but who could probably never explain why I left.
When you know every intimate detail about someone, it can be excruciating to watch that life unfold from afar, but there are certain parts of the heart that can’t tell what is past and what is present, and that’s how you survive. You carry them with you, and you remember the long nights talking, song lyrics screamed at the top of your lungs, and rides to nowhere that meant everything.
Time will do its thing, but don’t give up on the rest of the world.