“It’s Time.”

No one told me that it could take this long.
No one warned me of all that needed to be done. Even if they had, I wouldn’t have believed them.

“The first year is the hardest.”, they said.
Perhaps they were right and I just don’t remember? I’d have to say though that, for me, this third year has been the hardest.
I’ve made some major life changes in order to recover, grow, and begin to heal. Intensely examining myself – past, present, and potential future – in order to process everything that has happened, how it has affected me, what it all means, and how I can learn from it and use it to become better, wiser, and stronger.
All the while we have been constantly rehashing the details of the event in preparation for and execution of a jury trial which turned out to be a complete facade of justice, wrought with lies and an unlawful restriction of evidence.
And then there has been this coming to terms with the fragility of life and finality of death, as well as an acceptance of all that no longer is, can never be, and the emptiness that follows such a realization.

“October” makes me miss them more… but as I watched the leaves change to the brightest of colors, die off, and begin to fall, I felt a part me die inside, as well. Truth be told, for the better part of this month, I’ve felt nothing like myself and more like the shell of a human being simply going through the motions of day to day life without really LIVING much of any of it.

And I’m tired of it all. It’s exhausting.

This week has been especially hard as my sister and I navigated the final steps in closing the estates and prepare to officially cut ties with our legal team once and for all. All the while the timing of this culmination spans the anniversary of our parents deaths (October 26th) and concludes upon the anniversary of their funeral and burial. (November 2nd)

It’s been a long time coming.
I wish I could say that I am happy. I am simply numb.

Like a boxer stepping out of the ring after the match has been called a draw; relieved that it is over, yet battered and bruised, and in desperate need of repair.
There are no winners here; simply the conclusion of a long and drawn out fight.

I took some time to visit them this week. I placed 36 stems upon their grave; one for each month of this tumultuous journey.

I am not a “religious” person. I am still unclear on how I feel about any amount of “life after death”, but as I lay there looking up at the sky, I felt a wave of calm wash over me. I couldn’t help but think that no matter what happened or where they are now, we sure gave them a beautiful view right here, right now.

Realizing this made me proud – as I hope they would be of me now.

As I drove myself home that night, the void felt a little less thick. I could hear the words echoing in the back of my mind: “It’s time to get on with living.” …and for the first time in a long time, I couldn’t agree more.

#ChasingBoston #ForTheLoveOfTheRun

“10/26 – A Complicated Grief.”

“So this is what grief feels like.” – I say to my counselor, as the tears begin to fall.

Like coming to the edge of a cliff and looking down into the abyss.

Like standing in an empty room, devoid of light and sound. There are no windows, no doors, no ceiling, and no floors.

A vast emptiness. Nothingness. An unbearable sadness.

There are no words to truly describe it. There are no further lessons to be learned, no comfort to be found. There is simply nothing left.

Stare into it long enough and you shall certainly lose yourself, as well. I know this.

As October 26th approaches, I can feel myself falling; giving in to all that is not and no longer here.

For the past three years, however, there has always been something “more”. Something more to do – to attend to, to address, to rectify or fight for. I could feel my parents everywhere and in everything. But now, there is nothing. We have closed their legal case, ended their trial, and as we’ve entered the final stages of liquidating their estates, it feels as if there is nothing left. They simply cease to exist. I don’t feel them anymore. I don’t “see” them anywhere. Just this empty space where, once, they used to be.

You see, I am not afraid of the “dark” and I have no problem turning to face the deep. I’ve been able to sit with the uncomfortable and sift through the pieces. I turn it over and over to see it for what it really is and do my best to find the meaning in it all.

Perhaps there is beauty here? The closing of a chapter; the turning of a page. But, right now, I simply do not see it. I can not yet see beyond this day, beyond their lives, beyond the loss, and beyond this void.

If none of it matters anymore – what was even the point of their lives? Of your life? Or of mine?

This is not to insinuate that their lives did not have meaning. It goes without saying that they loved and were loved by many in return. They did many good things for many different people throughout their 60+ years upon this Earth, despite the relatively small scale upon which their kindnesses were performed. But if “Life” just simply moves along, with everybody and everything in it, when we die what is the actual point of our time spent here?

It’s a slippery slope to consider such things for a prolonged period of time. Look too closely, think too deeply, and you could easily lose yourself to the fragility of our own existence. I have, at times, lost hours of my own life spiraling within this mental matrix. I find myself having to force my own thoughts and body forward, intentionally shaking off the heaviness of this morbidly hopeless thought process, numbing this pain with the fluid motion of a daily run.

“The development of the mind comes through movement.” – Maria Montessori

Running has, once again, become my safeguard and my savior. I can say it no better than my friend, Tony Garcia, already has:

It’s been three years.

A long and complicated grief.

But, when I run, suddenly there is calm.

#ChasingBoston #ForTheLoveOfTheRun

*See the following links to purchase one (or all three!) of my friend, Tony’s incredibly inspiring books!

Wanna Know a Truth?: A Simple Man’s Search for the Truths in His Life https://www.amazon.com/dp/1539896226/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_M7mKFbA86A34Y

Whispers from My Heart: Learning to Quiet the Noise https://www.amazon.com/dp/1979496919/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_n8mKFbZP9C78Z

Secrets, Truths, & Whispers: Lessons from a Good, Hard Life (Heart Whispers) https://www.amazon.com/dp/164704216X/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_I8mKFbV2FY09G