anger and grief · cemetery · coping · Death and Dying · grief · Life After Loss · wreaths across america

and today, i got angry again.

five years and nine months ago, a piece of me died. i never saw it coming. it hit me like a train. a train that almost killed me. my “person”, the “christina” to my “meredith”, if you will (grays anatomy reference), died. just like that he was gone. my 27 year old best friend who was more a part of my family than his own, my big brother, my protector, my  military loving, two tours in Iraq surviving, mouthy, hilarious ass decided to try a drug that he had never in his life done before. that drug was heroin. we don’t know why, we don’t know if it was a conscious choice he made, we don’t know if he knew it was heroin, but he did it. once. and then he died while his idiot “friends” took photos of him “passed out”. we had all partied a lot in high school and in college, but he was never one for any drugs. that possibility hadn’t even occurred to me until we got the results of his autopsy weeks later. we did learn that it truly was only that one time. there was nothing else in his system other than alcohol and his ADHD medication. no one has ever gotten the full story on what happened that night, and i don’t believe we ever will. I’ve had a good five and half years to make some peace with that, and mostly, I’m doing alright. i miss him every single day. a piece of my heart died with him and the scar tissue is still so incredibly painful. i could go on and on but thats not why I’m writing today. Like I said, I’ve had some time to process, and while i don’t believe that time heals, i do believe that time allows you to adapt to change, whether it be good or bad. i used to go to the cemetery to see him at least once a month. but until this morning it had been an entire year since i had gone. I’m not sure why. partially because, well…life, and also because it makes me angry. This morning was the annual Wreaths Across America event, and he is buried in a veterans cemetery. i participate because there aren’t many things i can do “with” him these days, since he resides in a box in the ground. Before the thousands of volunteers begin placing wreaths on graves, there is a ceremony. Several people speak, the honor guard is there, and then there it was. the gun salute and the playings of taps. the last time i heard those two things was the day we said goodbye to him for the last time. the last time before they lowered his casket. it was a truly emotional trigger, though honestly not that unexpected. what i didn’t expect however, was that when the ceremony ended and I collected the wreaths specifically ordered for him to place at his grave, i was suddenly consumed by an overpowering combination of rage and utter sadness. i kneeled there alone, sobbing, for probably close for 25 minutes, all the while there are families and children that are not emotional at all, likely volunteering just to give back to possibly to place a wreath for a great grandparent. i am so angry with him that he isn’t here. how could he do that to me, to everyone? why would he do something so stupid? it is infuriating that when i need my person, i have to sit on the grass and stare a stone with his name on it. and so today, for the first time in a long while, i am so, so angry. you should be here. and it’s not fair. IMG_1866


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