A little over a year ago, on May 24, 2016, I had to climb the highest mountain I had ever faced. I had no plans on ever encountering a mountain this colossal. In fact, I was not prepared at all but rather thrown into 10 feet of snow, in flip flops, with not even a mere rope to cling to.
If you have lost someone close to you, you may be familiar with the mountain in reference. On May 24th, one of my closest friends was murdered. This event was and still remains to be, my Mt. Everest.
They tell you everything will be okay. They tell you they are there for you if you need it. However, along the trails of my own mountain, I've gathered a few things they don't tell you, that I wish someone would have told me.
Family members and friends try their best to tell you what they think you need to hear. They tell you everything happens for a reason and not to question God but they don't tell you about the nights you will wake up in the middle of the night screaming her name because you saw your friend in a dream or the days you wake up crying because they were the very first thing on your mind upon awakening.
What they don't tell you is the constant guilt you will feel for not being there to help your loved ones when they needed it. They say absolutely nothing about the immediate knot that forms in your stomach every single time you hear that person’s name.
They don't warn you to close your eyes during certain scenes of your favorite TV show because small details may remind you of them and depression loves to catch you off guard. They say it will be hard, but for whatever reason, they fail to mention that it will be nearly impossible to carry on some days, or that small tasks like getting yourself out of bed will become gargantuan responsibilities.
No one talks about how selfish you feel after days of literally wanting to die because you just cannot carry on without their light in your life, knowing they didn't get to choose.
No one, not a single soul warned me about the Mountain I was going to be forced to climb. And maybe no one could. Maybe my friends and family who have also lost someone close to them didn't warn me because they felt it was obvious that this was going to be hard.
There is no way to prepare yourself for something so devastating. So here I am offering my words as a blanket to you on your coldest nights. Because, the reality is, nothing anyone can say will alleviate any of the pain you will feel during the healing process.
And finally, the metaphorical mountain is unmasked as just that- the healing process. Although the trails on mine may be tear soaked, every step up that mountain is a step towards progress. So, I close this with hopes that someone's mountain looks a little more achievable today.