'Tis better to have loved
By KarieFugett on February 22, 2012
A lot has changed for me. It's all changed so quickly that it took me literally stopping and really looking back to realize just how different everything really is; how different I am. It's kind of insane. I've had to make so many huge decisions in the past couple of years. Decisions that would change everything. Now here I am looking back and wondering... how the hell did I get here? Not long ago my life seemed pointless - doomed. I was a new widow; a sad, lonely, depressed, widow who lost her only real love. Nothing was going right and my hope for anything in life or in myself was running out if there was any left at all.
Before that, I was the wife of a wounded Marine; a Marine who loved me very much but was severely effected by the war both mentally and physically. The war had left him torn and lost and in turn left me the same. Life was a roller coaster. Every day was met with new challenges. Some days the challenges were so large that my early 20-something brain just couldn't wrap around it all. We were very sad and, looking back, I would even say blinded by everything that was happening around us and to us. What I mean by that is that we were so focused on all the shit that we were oblivious to anything good in life. It's sad to think that we lived that way for so long. It's really sad.
Now, I sit here looking around me unable to find anything "bad". The only darkness in my life stems from my past, which is slowly fading - slowly turning into acceptance. I've come to a point in my life where I feel I'm finally on track. I'm where I need to be and doing what I need to do. I'm surrounded by good people and good things. God, the universe, or whatever is out there has finally decided to give me a break it seems, and that is okay with me. I'm beginning to feel like I can breath again - really breath.
All in two years I have made numerous new friends, gone to a business school, decided to open a business, decided not to open a business yet and instead follow my dream of going to college first, went to college (A's!), fallen in love again (his parents love me...a pleasant change), moved back to my hometown (something I never thought I would do), became a mostly vegetarian (I eat meat if Nick's dad cooks it), and started writing a book. In between all of that I traveled all over the US sometimes for fun, sometimes to learn, and other times to teach about this life. All in all it seems the decisions I've been making are the right ones. I feel deeply content with the things I've done with what I had left after losing everything. I'm proud of myself for that. And I'm excited to see what happens in the next two years, and the two years after that.
Life is crazy. It's full of surprises. Sometimes it's mean and sometimes it's nice. I'll always miss Cleve. There will always be some pain in me because of my past, but I'm getting to the point that I'm ready to let a lot of that go. I'm beginning to realize that all of us hurt - all of us. I am no different than you, or her, or him, or whoever. All we can do is move forward. All we can do is make something out of what we have left and make sure our future is better than our past. That's all we can do. That's what I want to do. I don't want to dwell anymore. I cannot live the rest of my life dwelling on something that just is - or isn't anymore.
He was hurt. We hurt together. We loved each other. He died. I'm here without him now. I love him even though he isn't here to love me back. And that's okay. Because death is a part of life and one day I'm going to die and someone is going to cry for me. And now, two years after he died, I have love coming at me from all different directions from friends and family and my boyfriend. I need to continue to focus on them - living, breathing people who deserve my attention, too. I will never forget him. I couldn't. But I've got to quit living like he is going to come back, because he isn't. And it will be okay.
Life has been good to me recently. It's been so good to me. At this point I am just along for the ride.
'Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. - Tennyson