Why am I still here?

IMG_1671.JPGWhen someone you truly love dies you cannot help but feel empty and useless. You wonder why and how you will live this life without them.

For me I know I have to; I have four kids depending on me. I can’t let them down, I can’t leave them. But for a long time my mentality was I needed to live long enough to raise them, get them off on their own and then I could tap out. I was never suicidal, I just knew the person I wanted to be with most was no longer here and I wanted to be where he was. I imagine this is a common feeling among the grieving. When someone you love more than yourself dies, whether that be a child, spouse, or friend, you want to be with them. When I came out of this darkness I realized I didn’t want to die. I wanted to live. I wanted to live an amazing life and I believed I had it in me to do so. As much hurt and guilt that I carried I still had this spark in me that refused to go out.

People always say to me you are so strong, I don’t know how you do it. I always say it’s the only option I have. What is option B? But the truth is it’s not the only option. I could have tapped out, left my family to raise my kids, lost my home and car. I choose not to do that. I choose to keep pushing. This is the option we must always pick. Fight for you and this life you still have. You are here for a reason and have a purpose. Find it, explore it, and allow it to thrive. I believe my purpose is to help, to help people who will walk through the darkness days. I want to help them walk forward to the light.


Once you have experienced grief you know you are now in this secret club. A club no one wants to be in but you are, you are a member for life. And although everyone’s grief is unique to them and their situation we will feel the same kind of pain. The kind that literally breaks your heart, the kind that makes you so tired but keeps you up all night. So it is our duty as members of this club to help one another. We have to lift each other up and keep each other going. We have to show each other there is light at the end of this terrible storm. Some of us realize this sooner than others, some of us never see that light. I know people who have been grieving a very long time and they refuse to let go of the anger and hurt. They can’t understand that letting go of those bad emotions doesn’t mean you are letting go of your loved one. There are others who do not believe they are worthy of a good life anymore, this is also common. The guilt that survivors hold is very powerful, you would do anything to trade places with your loved one. But we must face reality, you cannot switch places. You are here and they are not. We must change our way of thinking on this. They are not here to live out their lives, so we must live for them until we are ready to live for ourselves again.

Walking through the grief is hard. You have to face all those emotions, you will have to face the truth of what has happen. You will have to walk through the darkness. But what you don’t realize is right now by default you are just sitting in it. It’s time to move.

It’s time to find meaning in life again. Look for it, it’s hard at first. Nothing has meaning when you are in darkness. But when you begin to move you will begin to see the light again. Your loved one wants you to be happy. You know that. Find courage in yourself, find faith in the trees. Life is all around us and its glowing with energy, embrace it.

At the end of the day we have two choices: we can be our tragedy and become wasted space or we can allow our tragedy to transform us into a beautiful new light that can only come from the fire. We can see life in a way that is truly a gift. And we can embrace every breath and live it not only for ourselves but for the ones we love. 

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  • Tim Kapp
    commented 2016-08-10 18:47:09 -0700
    Thank you for your words. It’s been 7 months since my wife of 16 years departed this world. My faith in the lord has kept me going. For I have a 11 year old daughter and 9 year old son that depend on me. Thank you again!
  • James  Dawn Schwalbach
    commented 2016-08-10 09:12:42 -0700
    You have described the battle field that goes on in my mind daily. I so miss my beloved, my best friend and lover. She was my whole world. Yet I have to find a way to live again in peace and joy. For our children’s sake. She fought so hard to stay with me and the children. I love her even more for that. I miss her and think about her every minute of every day. Even dream about her. I dream often about us just doing our daily lives together. How much we enjoyed each other! So many couples miss out on how truly great a marriage can be. If you only give yourselves completely to each other. However, when the “till death do us part” happens, it is even more painful when you have loved so deeply. At least it is only myself suffering. I’m so glad she is well, so very happy, and awaits for all of us to join her one fine day. Thank you for sharing Michelle!
  • Eileen Lea
    commented 2016-08-09 21:24:14 -0700
    I feel so much of what you have written. It’s been 10 months for me and my 4 children. I have my own pain and then the pain of each of my children. It’s unbearable at times seeing what my children have lost. And to live with this pain for the rest of my life scares me.
  • Alex Whitaker
    commented 2016-08-08 18:06:37 -0700
    Thank you