How could it keep spinning when what made my world light up had gone? As irrational as it was, I wanted to step off the edge and curl up in a corner. People drove to work, gave presentations, went to the grocery store, and picked up their kids from soccer.
It wouldn’t slow down because of my son’s suicide. Or for my grief.
Life trudged forward for months and my efforts to try and keep up fell short. It was a long time before I could keep pace again and when it happened, guilt tapped me on the shoulder. It was pushed away with defiance because Charles wouldn’t want me to be stuck. And as much as I wanted to move forward to feel better again, a part of me ached to stay back and leave bread crumbs so he could find us again. Moving forward meant leaving him behind.
None of it made sense. My emotions were all wavy, unsorted, and ugly, and to unpack it all and make sense of it, I wrote thousands of pages here and for other media. The story I ended up putting between two book covers kept stalking me until I put pen to paper. Or in my case, keyboard to screen.
All the pain, agony, joy, heartache, hope and love that had nowhere to go was poured into that project and relived again and again.
The writing process didn’t make anything prettier or less painful. But it helped me sort it out and find a way forward.