Unfortunately, since a young age, I've experienced loss. But I had never been struck by the severity of losing someone that feels so close to you yet stood so far away. It's been over a year but it is still something constantly crossing my mind. I'm taken through planes of emotions, through feelings of longing, through "what if's and "why's. Some days are harder than others. A single memory takes me from a laugh to a sob. Some days are easier. My laughs stay at laughs. I find myself questioning where I'm at in terms of grief and mourning. I think that writing it out will help me and maybe help others in a similar position.

Mourning and grief are not linear. And I think that's what makes the process all the more painful. I begin thinking I'll be fine, that the sadness that persists will leave me, that I can feel happy thinking about them again. Then comes the day where it all crashes down and I'm left wondering when it will stop hurting like the very first day. This is where it's important to realize and understand that the days of happiness last longer than the days of hurt. I've been able to go weeks doing fine and the bad days in-between are short.

Bad days are not a sign of regression; they're normal. You've lost someone so important to your life. The impact they've had on you will always exist and always be a part of you. Of course, you're going to have days where it's the most painful, gut-wrenching sorrow. They're still with you wherever you go, and sometimes the reminder that they physically aren't is too much to bear. But that doesn't mean you aren't getting better. One day the pain will be mild, one day it might be gone. But if you still feel something years down the line, that's okay.

I also think it's important to find a healthy outlet of some kind to help in the days you're still recovering. Whether it's a hobby or something, as long as it allows you to find some peace or joy from inside of yourself, it's okay to let the feelings out. For me, it involves the moon. I have a thousand connections to the moon and I use them to pull myself together and pull myself to the person I lost. Some nights I talk to the moon. Some nights I just gaze contemplatively. Some nights I try smiling and instead cry. It helps to have something physical there.

Loss is difficult. Moving on is hard. Understanding that you are moving on is confusing and sometimes hurts. But it's happening, and it'll be okay.