The Implications of Loss

By: Matt Landi

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.” –Robert Frost

Perhaps those who have lost can relate…

    A flurry of emotions sets in. A sweet pain endures. The heart tends to forget to beat, and compensates by speeding up occasionally. A sad understanding follows the storm of thoughts and feelings. A sweet melancholy is the only passion in this moment. In this moment, I miss you, and at the same time do not. I cannot describe what you have meant to me, and at the same time I cannot understand how I meant something to you. A love, a zest for life, the purpose that you gave me wanes, and I struggle to find my own. Not everything is as beautiful as it once was, and not everything is as easy. You have taken from me an innocence that cannot be replaced, a view of the world that believed in the good in everyone, and the trust that you can really see the good in everything. It is a struggle to remind myself that these are the ways of the world, and simply because one person abused the world I tried to give them, does not mean that the world I once had can’t exist or didn’t exist. It means that my life, my values, my strengths, my weaknesses, my feelings, my thoughts—who I am, all of it did not agree with you. Although some parts are worthy of remembrance, there are others that you would rather wish didn’t happen, and never transpired. I say this only because if there wasn’t anything to regret, then nothing would have went wrong.
    Instead of the road that would make my life easy--to stay on a path that reminded me of you and more importantly of myself when I was with you, of a road that could grant me a reprieve of reality and absolve me from the hardships I choose to endure--I choose a road less traveled, where only those with the strength and courage to create a better future for themselves travel. No, I traveled lightly upon a treacherous, darkened road, where the path before me was limited only to as far as my hand could stretch and my foot could reach. I traveled the road that is hardest to remain on: acceptance. My destination is still unknown, but I know the place where I am going will be a place of solitude and freedom; freedom from you, freedom from the destructive hope of us, freedom from feeling anything towards you. A better future awaits me, and on this path, I will be free. There are many burdens on this road. There are obstacles that you cannot see until you are upon them, and there are destinations with different people who serve only as a temporary home, a shelter from the storms of this road, but cannot remain permanent for their sake and yours. They are much to bear. This road is not easily traveled. 

    This road is uphill, and the force of gravity constantly reminds me of the constant pull back towards the beauty that we once shared.  I find it hard at times to regret anything, for everything I was given and gave was more beautiful than anything I could have ever imagined.  Despite the power of this nostalgic force that serves as a reminder of what we had, to think that the gift you gave me was clearly not the best thing that can and will happen to me is quite possibly the most comforting fact of my life over these past few months. I have never lived in the past, nor do I intend to, but sometimes I find it hard to escape it, and this explains my disposition as of late. Constantly gnawing at my actions and pursuits, reminiscing has become an acid that slowly dissolves passion. In any given moment, I am the product of fear, the desire for new opportunities, an indescribable range of emotions, and the inability of a finding a resounding voice and idea of who I am. With this comes pain in the form of a lingering, festering bruise and soreness that was suffered in an accidental fall a couple days earlier, yet can still be felt sharply when moved the wrong way or pressed upon, whether by my actions or by others. The pain I go through is few and far between, and gradually grows further apart each passing day, but it is still there, and in all probability will be for the rest of my life, although I believe that I’ll learn to live with the weight on my heart and someday be able to easily endure and carry it. I have not been myself, and am struggling with finding myself anew, without you, without the world I thought we knew, and escaping this burden is not easy. My escapes come in the form of new experiences.  It has been said that the core of man’s spirit comes from new experiences.  If this is so, my waning spirit needs to be transformed by new: new people, new places, new faces, everything new.   So, I do only what I feel like I have been able to do; what is necessary to move on.
    And there it is: to move on. To embrace this life that I am creating for myself; without you, without the idea of us, and without the things that we shared is something that has defined my actions over the past few months. This process is unlike any other, for there are no set rules, there are no general principles that follow this, there is no logic to this process. A does not follow from B, there is little causality to how I feel from day to day, from how I see the world anew. Only attempts at discovering myself again. Un-chartered waters are where I go astray, floating on and on in search of some solid ground, of a new life, a new opportunity, a fresh start, and of a sound idea of who I am and who I am to be. This process is a result of moments, times of distinct and clear conclusions, of epiphanies, of the complete and infinite power of the will, and of sound reasoning and a wide array of emotions. Even if one of them appears to be logical, connecting these moments is where logic fails; where principles do not hold, where rules do not apply, and where there is no explanation of how one feels or what one does.
    I am blessed for this. There is much that can be derived from my experience: This place, this world, this life of ours is for discovering, and is for making of it what you will. Do not bind yourself to the few, to the limited, to the bounds of insignificance. Embrace limitlessness, the idea that in this life you will never run out of things to find. Discover. Move out. Experience everything before you define anything. Open your mind, open your soul, open your heart to all that the world has to offer. Discover your dreams, and let no one tell you that they cannot be awoken. Trust everyone, trust everything, and forgive those who break your trust—but never forget.
    We are all here for only a short while, and nothing is going to change that. There is only one immutable condition to this process, one that this process functions completely within and could not transpire without. Time. This experience is unique to everyone, except for time. Give yourself time for everything. Give yourself the focus and attention that you deserve. Nothing happens overnight, but that does not mean you should not aspire for whatever cause or change you believe you should be aspiring for. God has blessed us each with time on this earth, in this state of existence we call living, and to waste it is to waste this gift. Do what you want, do what makes you happy, do what brings you excellence, love, and a purpose. Care not for things that are immaterial to who you are and who you wish to be. Realize their unfortunate necessity, but do not focus your life around them. Focus your life around you, around things and people that bring you to where you want to be, and to where you will live fully. Explore different avenues of thought, different means of becoming who you want to be. Live. Get up and live. What is stopping you?
    Time is present in life, always. Time makes possible the one maxim for life that holds to be true regardless of experience: it goes on.


Photo by: Rachel Dieringer

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