No, I haven't lost my mind. I know it's not January 1st, the official New Year's Day. But for the last three years time for me has been measured by how long it's been since Eddie died. March 16th marked three years since his death, so March 17th was the beginning of a new year for me. The first year was all about survival ... remember to breathe, try to eat, put one foot in front of the other, make it from one day to the next. The second year was about restoring some order to my life ... getting back into a routine, staying busy, going back to school, beginning to make some changes around the house. The third year became more about taking care of myself ... doing things I enjoy, getting out of the house more, reconnecting with old friends, buying things I wanted whether I really needed them or not!
At some point during this past year - though I can't pinpoint just when - I began to come to terms with Eddie's suicide. I haven't fully accepted it (and I may not ever), but I know now I can live with it. I know what happened, even though I don't understand it. I know I couldn't have done anything to stop it, but I still wish I could have. I will always have questions, but I know I'll never get answers to them. What happened had a profound effect on me, and I will be a different person the rest of my life because of it.
Now as the fourth year begins, I don't have any major resolutions. Finishing my specialist's degree (which I should do in October) is at the top of my list. I plan to continue going out with my friends and spending time with my family. We'll make our yearly trip to the beach this summer - maybe I'll even find time to go more than once this year. I'm looking forward to a reunion with some of my best friends from college. I don't really need anything else for myself or the house, but if I see something I like I'll probably get it. I plan to look more towards the future and not dwell on the events of the past. I can retire from teaching in just three years, so it's not too early to start thinking about that! I don't know what the future holds, or even what it is that I want to do with my life from here, but I do know that I can do whatever I want whenever I want. I'm back to living my life one day at a time again - the difference is that now it's because I want to, not because I have to.
"I'm Movin' On" by Rascal Flatts (2001)
I've dealt with my ghosts and faced all my demons, finally content with a past I regret. I've found you find strength in your moments of weakness, for once I'm at peace with myself. I've been burdened with blame, trapped in the past for too long ... I'm movin' on ... At last I can see life has been patiently waiting for me, and I know there's no guarantees, but I'm not alone. There comes a time in everyone's life when all you can see are the years passing by, and I've made up my mind that those days are gone ... I've loved like I should but lived like I shouldn't. I had to lose everything to find out. Maybe forgiveness will find me somewhere down this road ... I'm movin' on.