One year. A sand in the passage of time. A period of time dominated by love and pain. Watching my brother breathe his last breath seems an experience both long, long ago and yet as recent as watching the sun rise this morning (grief necessitates the acceptance of paradoxes). Perhaps the heavier the emotion, the greater the ability to distort our perception of time. I'm not entirely sure where I am at with my grief, nor am I sure where I am supposed to be with it.
I have spent the last year of my life living the motto, first, to endure. Merely surviving the jumbled pieces of my life seemed a lofty enough goal. It's been a good strategy for me and in all honesty, has served me well. There is, however, a small part of me that grows daily by the smallest of margins but inexorably gains nonetheless. It wants to move on. It wants to enter into the clinical phase of my training fully engaged. It no longer wants to be troubled nor governed by loss or the threat of more grief. It wants to live life amongst the living again. To find some measure of peace and joy.
You can imagine that grief might have something to say about that. The loss and pain will not be brushed aside so easily. So I am negotiating with grief, not that I have any negotiating power. Grief holds all the cards. But I've struck a bit of a truce, if you will. Grief will allow that tiny flicker of a flame to continue to burn and be fed daily. In exchange, whenever another wave of grief comes, I will not try to overshadow it with light. I will allow it to wash over me as it has countless times in this past year and in all likelihood will follow me the rest of my life. I will do so with the knowledge that after the wave has receded, the light will remain unextinguished and that I remain more than the sum total of my grief.