“You’re not giving up.  You will never give up.  You will never stop waiting for her to return.  And if she does come back, then you’ll be here.  But if she doesn’t?  You hope.”

I believe that the best writers are those who are touched a little by the dark side.  Now, I don’t mean dark as in “evil in a cloak wielding a lightsaber.”  I’m more thinking of dark as in touched by experiences beyond our control.  There are these experiences in life that we can’t stop, we can’t do anything about, but we can get them down on a page.  And that means something, at least to us.  It’s how we survive.  We craft our experiences into something manageable so that they don’t completely overwhelm us.  

Experiences change us.  It’s up to us whether that change is for better or worse.  I think that some experiences have the possibility to completely eradicate who we are.  Who we are, the original, is not gone; they are simply painted over by their experience.  The problem comes in when we wait around for the original to reappear.  I don’t know that that can happen, ever, at least not fully.  Some things are just too dark, and color us permanently.  Like a white piece of paper scribbled on with a black Sharpie.  You can’t come back, not all the way.

The challenge in living is the fact that we still have to keep going.  We aren’t giving up on our original selves.  We are simply choosing to move forward.  In the back of our minds, we are always waiting to see if that original will reappear.  We will welcome that original with open arms.  But we accept that this may not happen and we don’t stay stagnant—above all else, we keep going.  If we don’t, if we stay still and silent, we run the risk of becoming bitter and rotted.  And then our experiences win.  

The me that was is gone.  But I can’t stop and wait for her anymore.  I hear a lot how strong I am, and I laugh at that.  I’m not, not really.  But I want to be.  I want to be strong.  I want to be brave. I don’t want to be broken.  

All this to say, I’m not giving up.  Ever.  I’m not going to stop waiting in the back of my mind for myself to reappear.  I am, however, going to keep putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward.  And I’m going to keep talking.  Being silent benefits no one in the long run, but talking/writing/sharing benefits everyone. 

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