An hour later a text came through, pulling the still illuminated phone from a rear pocket the screen read, “My dad shot himself.” Reality has a way of being all too real when you least expect and finds ways to repeat the history we hide from. This moment being only three weeks shy of the two-year anniversary of the phone call informing me of the same situation with my mother. It was a sobering moment and the first thing I did was head home to pack a bag and find a flight.
Utah is becoming synonymous with death in my world. I have now only been there two times in the last few years, both associated with an unexpected and unpleasant death. Rachel was far more composed upon my arrival than I would have expected. We’re both the types of people who spend too much time in their heads, reliving every detail to the point of exhaustion. I had concern as Rachel is more of an outward expresser of emotions, it wasn’t clear exactly how she may react. Not thinking she would off herself, but knowing there was the chance. I understand how she feels in this situation. There’s nothing and no one who can help you.
So, myself and other friends did the only thing we could do, stick around. Asking how someone is doing is nothing more than a polite, forced expression. The only thing anyone can ever really say is that they’re fine, when in actuality they are going out of their mind, trying desperately to not fall apart. Being impossible to stay forever, I had to leave after a few days, work and life refuse to wait. Time will always push us forward, no matter how we try to hold onto a moment.
With this fresh wound cutting at a friend I’m made to think how much time has moved me beyond that moment two years ago when I was convinced there was no tomorrow. I can’t say I’m over anything, it seems more likely that the mind tucks away the bitter thoughts, just enough to allow a person to move beyond a painful moment. I hope for Rachel time will press forward quickly. Getting away from the moment seems the best therapy for accepting it and continuing to survive.