Fire and rain

“We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail.” -Looking For Alaska

Death is one of those things that no matter how many times you’ve experienced the loss of someone — close to you or only known by name — it never gets any less shocking. We know it’s inevitable. That everyone is going to die, but somehow, when a person actually does it’s still just as unbearable no matter if you saw it coming or not. 

There’s heartbreak when the person you thought you were going to be with forever cheats on you. There’s heartbreak when you don’t get the job you want or you’re fired from the job you loved. There’s a trillion different kinds of heartbreak, but to me, those aren’t real heartbreaks. Sure, your supposed soulmate breaking up with you sucks and hurts like hell but it’s nothing compared to the death of someone you know personally. That’s something you never actually get over. Real heartbreak is watching your mom lose a courageous fight with cancer. Real heartbreak is your high school boyfriend not making it out of an early morning wreck. Real heartbreak is losing your best friend to suicide. Real heartbreak is the unexpected loss of your grandfather. Real heartbreak is someone’s evident absence from the world as we know it.

People say it gets easier with time, but I don’t find that to be true. I don’t think losing someone to the great unknown is something that ever gets easy. You just learn how to live your life without them in it. You get used to that gnawing feeling of absence. The missing just becomes part of who you are and how you feel every moment of every day.


I know this is a slightly (okay extremely) morose post but, I’ll take this moment to quote a work you might be familiar with entitled The Help, “anniversary of his death, every year I can’t breath. But to you all it’s just another day of bridge.” Anyone that’s experienced the death of someone I think can relate to this feeling which I personally take some comfort in. While you might not know for sure a person’s story, it’s probably safe to say that they’ve suffered the same as you regardless of who they are.

Life is short. Like ridiculously short and you never know when the last time you see someone will be. Forgive and love easily my friends. 

JJH 1/15/89-2/7/09


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