I had a very close personal friend who lost their daughter. I watched as years later she suffered still from great depression and sadness. I watched as life happened around her and she watched from inside her own hell. Many years later her life ended but she never was able to see past that darkness. I pray she is at peace now. When I lost Deanna, I vowed to someone that I wouldn't allow that to happen to me. That no matter what I would fight to keep going ,that I would not allow the tragedy to consume me. I am still fighting.
19 days before Deanna's accident, another young woman took her life. The stress of medical school and underlying untreated depression (fyi you can't be treated for depression and become a doctor.. crazy yes??) built until it was unbearable. I met her sweet mother just a month after we lost our girls. We spoke via emails and Facebook, just briefly, the kind of talk that just lets another know you are there, that your heart aches for them too. My friend could not bear life without her daughter and ultimately I read her goodbye on Facebook, again I vowed I wouldn't allow that to happen to me. That no matter what I would fight to keep going, that I would not allow the tragedy to consume me. I am still fighting.
I have a very hard time the closer it gets to Deanna's angelversary. I go over every little thing that I could possibly torture myself with. From moments that I could have made better, to massive mistakes I made, right down to maybe that tip wasn't that great because I smiled at them funny, or I didn't vacuum under my desk when I vacuumed last, you lazy shit. I openly admit to actively battling depression as well as very unfortunately suicidal thoughts. I fight myself in the war of self worth, and especially at this time of year I find little that is good with me. I look at all the ways I have failed in this life, but.... I am still fighting.
Oh speaking of failing, I can promise you each and every time I look in the mirror I see a failed attempt to lose weight. I can't seem to get the potion right, the magical combo, the prescription, cocktail, that will allow me to see pounds come off. I think I have tried every diet known to man and still.... fat. I will find the solution... I am still fighting.
Yesterday as I was knocking the weight of 6 years of hurt off my shoulders so I could complete the tasks ahead of me to prepare for my up coming trip, I read something that shook me. On a friends post about a half marathon we ran, someone else posted that I should not have stopped, in my mind that very quickly meant they think I quit. Someone out there thinks I am a quitter, someone I love and care about ... sees me as a quitter. After fighting some mornings to just get out of bed, to face other humans, to keep breathing, someone thinks I am a quitter. I sat on my bed and cried. I stood up because... I am still fighting.
This morning my alarm went off and I was tired, my body hurt, my soul hurt, and I just wanted to stay there, and I thought to myself, "NO DAMNIT GET UP! You are NOT doing this, take it one minute at a time and GET UP!" I did... I joined my Reboot family and started working out. After about 30 minutes I found myself outside hurling, not my brightest moment, poor bush. Tears were running down my face, (side note: I cry when I throw up... no clue why) I walked back in the Gym and just said .. I got to go, picked up my kettlebell and put it away.. " NO DAMNIT.. SHAKE IT OFF! YOU ARE NOT DOING THIS! Get back to work" and I did. I spent another 45 minutes pushing through a rolling tummy and massive anxiety that I may puke on someone. I thought to myself... I am still fighting.
I let my team drive me. their will to be there this morning, their fight to get through all the days, all the minutes, all the things on their plates, as I fought through this morning beside them I was reminded of a couple of things. First a card that my dad gave my brother when our sweet Melanie went to heaven, I know it seems weird that I remember that card but somehow I did, my brother carried it until it became tattered and almost unreadable but the last lines of each verse (are they verses in poems? Maybe they are Kastanzas.. no that is George from Seinfeld.. nevermind) has stayed imprinted in my soul somewhere...
"When care is pressing you down a bit, Rest if you must, but don't you quit"
"Don't give up though the pace seems slow, You may suceed with another blow"
"So stick to the fight when you are hardest hit, It's when things seem the worst that you must not quit"
And then... the speech from Any Given Sunday...
"We’re in hell right now, gentlemen, believe me. And, we can stay here -- get the shit kicked out of us -- or we can fight our way back into the light. We can climb outta hell one inch at a time.
You know, when you get old in life things get taken from you. I mean that's...part of life. But, you only learn that when you start losing stuff. You find out life’s this game of inches. So is football. Because in either game, life or football, the margin for error is so small -- I mean one-half a step too late, or too early, and you don’t quite make it. One-half second too slow, too fast, you don’t quite catch it.
The inches we need are everywhere around us.
They’re in every break of the game, every minute, every second.
On this team, we fight for that inch. On this team, we tear ourselves and everyone else around us to pieces for that inch. We claw with our fingernails for that inch, because we know when we add up all those inches that’s gonna make the fuckin' difference between winning and losing! Between livin' and dyin'!
I’ll tell you this: In any fight, it’s the guy who’s willing to die who’s gonna win that inch. And I know if I’m gonna have any life anymore, it’s because I’m still willin' to fight and die for that inch. Because that’s what livin' is! The six inches in front of your face!!
Now I can’t make you do it. You got to look at the guy next to you. Look into his eyes! Now I think you’re gonna see a guy who will go that inch with you. You're gonna see a guy who will sacrifice himself for this team because he knows, when it comes down to it, you’re gonna do the same for him!
That’s a team, gentleman!
And, either we heal, now, as a team, or we will die as individuals."
I have to say I am so very grateful for my team, our group, the people who believe in me with me, no matter our differences. Without this team I don't know that I would fight as hard as I do. I know in this team that I can look around and the person next to me is willing to go that inch with me, for me, beside me, for that reason. I am still fighting.
So believe what you will, I believe some rather shitty stuff about myself, but if there ever was one thing that I know I am not, nor will I ever be, is a quitter. If you need proof of that ask that treadmill I mutilated this morning after puking my guts up. I think a 1 minute 55 second quarter mile is pretty good for a quitter don't you?
I will keep fighting.