In this quiet moment, when night has fallen and the world slumbers, I sit and just allow myself to feel whatever it is that I need to feel. I concentrate on just breathing since that is work enough for my broken heart. And I even allow myself to entertain the thought of giving up. It’s not a thought with any intention behind it, but more a desire to just cease existing; to not have to face this empty world. Healing is a slow process, I’m discovering, and nothing can rush it. There is no shortcut through this valley, just a steady inching forward one step at a time. The sad memories haunt me, sometimes even torment me, but I want to purposefully choose the good ones. I need to remember the special moments we shared and focus on our love and joy. I don’t want tragedy to define me but I do want it to shape me into a better person. I feel as if blinders I didn’t know I wore have been lifted from my eyes and I can suddenly see and feel other people’s pain in a way I never have before. I see suffering and hurt in a new light and experience a deeper, more real empathy than I’ve ever known before. This life is incredibly beautiful but it is also so so cruel and I don’t think any of us escape it unscathed. We are all broken in some way. Every day I meet people who have lost a child, a spouse, a marriage, health, a dream. Something. And I understand their hurt in a new way. I am still coming to terms with my own loss, I am still struggling to accept that this is my life now, but I have plenty of company on this road. I know I take comfort from those who have survived great loss and are now living joyfully once again. If they can do it, perhaps so can I.