Tomorrow is the date of a very unhappy anniversary for my family. When you’re broken to begin with, having something like this happen doesn’t just rattle your foundation, it comepletely decimates it.
During the past two years we have discussed my nephew’s death with minute detail. We share stories, dig up the past, rework old scenes looking for new clues. We cry, lament, rage. We can’t unring the bell. We can’t fix our past mistakes. We carry guilt the way Atlas carried the weight of the world and the heavens — a heavy burden that can’t be laid aside.
Tomorrow, once again, there will be replays. Our mental VCRs will play our version of “that day” again and again. The if-only monster will visit each of us, needling us as to our role. We will ask ourselves over and over, “What could I have done…” There will be no answer. The only one who knew isn’t there. It’s an emotional torture so profound it’s unbearable. Tears will not be enough.
Everyone has unhappy anniversaries. I wish you peace as you navigate your day. I wish us peace, acceptance, and grace as we navigate ours.