Today is one of those days when I wish time travel were possible.
If I could take one trip, it would involve returning to my brother’s rented house and throwing some salt on his sidewalk and then quietly disappearing into the night. Perhaps the events of that night could be avoided with that one simple act.
I’m sure we all have moments in time that we wish we could change.
I don’t write about my brother’s death to seek sympathy. I honestly don’t need or want it.
But I write about it on this anniversary for a couple reasons. One, to mark the day. It is significant for me, not a joyous occasion by any stretch, but it deserves to be noted. But I also write for those who may stumble across this blog and find themselves in this dreadful club for the first time.
Do not despair, the days do get easier. They did for me. I hope they do for you. But you don’t stop missing those who are gone.
My advice for you is this…. allow yourself to grieve your loss, on your time table. Grieving never really stops. There will be times you only need a moment. Sometime more, sometimes less. But do the business of grieving and then get back in the game. You are needed here.
And my warning to you is this: If you don’t do the business of grieving your loss, it will consume you. Perhaps even destroy you. Once an explosion has started, you can’t stop it. It will continue until it has dissipated its energy. The only thing you can do it is work to direct that energy in a manner that minimizes the resulting damage, both to yourself and to others around you.
Make no mistake… you will be changed by grieving. Much like fired ammunition, that once loaded cartridge is now useless, primer spent, powder burned, and bullet smashed beyond recognition. But the case remains. And that case can be reloaded and reused again, and again, and again. Changed, yes, but still effective.
There are many theories about the cause and effect relationship time travel would have on future events. Even if time travel doesn’t give us the ability to change the past, I would wish to be with my brother as he passed. To be there to lay a coat over him so he’s not cold, or even just hold him as he leaves this world and tell him that I love him and that I am proud of him.
One last time.