Not being able to work, because of the injuries I sustained in the car accident, has been both a blessing and curse. It’s been nearly 3 months and I estimate another 3 before I can return to work. This gives me almost too much time to think, to reflect and ponder aimlessly on every detail of my life that I can remember from the last few years.
There is some quote about how words cut deeper than sticks or stones ever could and leave more painful scars. Right now, in this moment, with all that I have gone through, I think that I finally understand what that means. A little perspective, in my life I have had two knee surgeries as a result of playing soccer and now 4ish years later it’s not even something that I think about. More recently, the car accident, I broke my nose, my orbit, a rib, my leg, and shattered my humerus and elbow. Fighting through this is cake, it’s what I was raised to do; fight until it’s over and not a moment sooner. My right arm is little more than a glorified paperweight at this point, it’s held together by screws, plates and nothing short of a thousand prayers that I get function back again. I’ll always have a 12 inch scar running down my arm, but one day I’ll barely remember that my arm was shattered. The physical scars will almost always fade away in one way or another.
Let’s talk about the emotional scars I carry. My fiancée was killed immediately in the accident, I have no memory of the 10 days after, the thoughts, the feelings and the most recent memories that I have of Kelsie. Not without having to strain my memory to think of any bit I can get to. I can feel how much she loved me, how much she wanted a life with me, the kids we will never have, the life we had roughly planned out. I know all of these things, I will carry them with me forever, because it’s all that I have left.
What has been bothering me the most is that through all of this no one has seen me cry, no one has seen me break down, no one has been on the receiving end of my rage that I keep bottled up inside always on the verge of coming out. And yet my brain can only remember being told that I’m not a good person, that I’m too negative and a whole host of other things attacking my character. I get up every morning and I fight to take my next breath, I fight to keep going, and if I didn’t still wear my engagement ring no one would ever know that my other half, my better half, died before we could have a life.
Life is about more than just surviving
But sometimes you have to learn how to survive again before you can live.
It almost shames me that that attack on who I am clouds my mind when all I should be doing is grieving and focusing on healing physically. Do I get sad sometimes, of course, the human who was to be my wife 7 months after her funeral is gone, but no one will ever know how I really feel, no one will ever see me break unless I want them to. No one is 100% all the time, I’m no exception, but what I can tell you is that now no one sees anything but the mask of my being 100%. That’s not fair to me.
It’s okay to not be okay
Kelsie taught me that, after working for months to break through and repair the damage done by your words. It’s not healthy to perfectly okay all the time.
I love you and miss you everyday little penguin. It’s been 2.5 months and it still hasn’t gotten any easier to not have you by my side.