life is hard


It had only been a few days. My eyes were still swollen from all of the crying and my head was constantly thudding painfully. He said that I needed to get out of the house, so he called a babysitter for the boys. We drove through town and he pulled in the arby's drive thru where he asked if I had eaten anything yet that day. No was my reply, so he made me eat a beef and cheddar sandwich. It tasted wonderful and I almost finished the entire sandwich, a great feat for me in those first couple of days.

He took me to our long time favorite spot up the canyon. It was quiet and cold and we were blanketed by gray skies all around us. We hiked through the snow and stood by the river where I gulped the cold fresh air as though I wouldn't survive without it.

The thing about my favorite places, the mountains and the rivers that I keep going back to, is that they stay the same. Life around me changes and I try so hard to keep up with it. I exhaust myself to keep up with it. Sometimes in my quest to keep up with change, as in days such as these, I am left raw and broken, beaten and unsure of how to pick myself up again and move on with life while this kind of pain exists in my chest.

But then I come here.

I walk beneath the same trees and I swear that those tall, magnificent and friendly trees are trying to tell me something. The earth beneath my feet is solid, the river flows in its perfect balance beside the dirt, the rock walls tower above. They will not change. They will always be here.

I hiked below and stared at the flowing river, letting my mind go numb. I'm learning to live in this constant battle of trying to forget while trying not to forget all at the very same time. So I stared at that river for a long while and let it completely wash over any thoughts that tried to make way in my mind.

And then.

Suddenly, in a last-ditch effort to cheer me up, he impulsively stripped stark naked and ran through the snow and into the ice cold river for a short dip. And just like that, I laughed. He laughed. We both laughed and laughed together.

It was the first real laugh I had experienced in days which actually felt more like years.

He ran out of the river laughing and shaking from the cold and hurried to put his clothes back on. He said softly to the sky, that was for you James! And I thought of how James would have loved that, how he would have laughed too.

"The reality is you will grieve forever. You will not 'get over' the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same again. Nor should you be the same, nor should you want to."
-Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


  1. Beautifully and painfully written. My heart breaks for you. What a beautiful soul and partner you have in your husband to help carry you through these hard times. ❤️

  2. I love so much that your husband did that! I can't imagine what you're going through, but I love that you're able to put your grieving into words and try to make sense of the senselessness. I thought you were a strong person before this trial-and if anyone can come out of this stronger than before, it's you!