Taking A Step Forward

I’m sitting on a wooden dock. The sun setting in front of me, my shadow stretching out behind me. The pinks, oranges, yellows, and reds from the sky color the water in front of me. Fireflies are starting to come out of their hiding places and light up the dark that’s approaching. The only sounds I hear are the crickets and the waves saying hello to the shore. I pay them no attention. Honestly, I’m so lost in my thoughts that a marching band could be playing behind me and I don’t think I’d really hear them.

That was three months ago.

They say no one heals the same. Grief is such a strange thing. Some days I feel like I’m going to be okay , but most days I just feel stuck. Like a mouse in a mousetrap. Trying so hard to get out of the trap but getting nowhere.

Today, I’m sitting on the same wooden dock. I haven’t seen the sun in days. Gray skies block the sun. My shadow has gone into hiding and the water is dark. The fireflies have gone into hibernation, dreaming of warm summer days to come again. The waves still quietly say hello to the shore. The never ending need to be seen and heard. I take a deep breath and exhale, watching my breath leave my body. It’s so cold my tears freeze as they roll down my cheek. I’m still so lost a bear could wander out of the woods and sit down beside me and I would pay it no mind.

How do I get over you being gone?

I feel hopeless. Prayers won’t bring you back. I feel so weak, but I know I’m not. It takes strength to wake up every day and get out of bed and continue life without you here. A strength, fortunately, most people don’t have to find, at least today. If only they lived each day like it would be their last, if I had lived each day like it would’ve been our last.

If I had lived that last day knowing it was my last day with you. Would I have done anything differently?

That’s the nagging question. Would I have done anything differently? I loved you with every ounce of my being but did you know that? I would’ve laid down for my life for you but did I ever tell you that? Or did you somehow know that without my words? If I had known would I have stayed up all night talking about everything, and nothing, to hear your voice for a few more hours, a few more minutes? If I had known, would I have held you a little tighter as we slept together one last time? Or would I have stayed awake just staring at you so I could memorize everything about your face?

Damn, these voices are so loud but I don’t know what is worse. All these questions or this silence that is so deafening sitting here.

I know I am punishing myself sitting here in the cold. Maybe if enough tears fall, I will wash you out of my system. Maybe if I shiver enough it will shake you out of my system. But I know neither of these will work.

You will still be here. Trapped inside my broken heart.

I look out at the dark water and talk to no one. Or maybe you are there. I don’t know.

What do I know?

I know that somehow I’m getting stronger each day. I know I am appreciating life more each day. I know I am more resilient than I thought I ever could be. I know with each breath in and each breath out that my heart is still beating.

I know the grass is greener after a thunderstorm. I know the sun and the stars are still behind these gray clouds. And I know the sunset is only the ending to that day and that the sunrise tomorrow will be a new day.

I know a broken heart heals one stitch at a time. Today, I will add another stitch. And someday it will be healed and the scar will make it stronger.

I know the earth keeps spinning, the sun will continue to shine, even behind the clouds, and that life goes on.

I know I can’t stay in this place. I know I need to find a way to move forward. Life hasn’t stopped and I know it’s time for me to get on with mine.

I know this pain is real. I know it will always be here. I know it will lessen with time.

Maybe the thing I know the most is I will always love you.

Maybe that’s enough for today.

I pick myself up off the dock and look back at the water again.

And with that I take a step forward. And then another. And then another.

Here’s To Moving On by Dashboard Confessional-

I’m Still Out Here by Casting Crowns-

Still Frame by Citizen Soldier-

Better Days Coming by MercyMe –

Don’t Lose Heart by Steven Curtis Chapman –

Still by Steven Curtis Chapman –

Begin Again by Fearless Soul –

5 thoughts on “Taking A Step Forward

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