As I sit here with my coffee and my school books on the couch beside me, I ask myself, “what if it wouldn’t have happened”? I am trying to focus and complete my course tasks for the day but there is something that keeps haunting my mind, and I wonder if it will ever stop.
“B.C hikers killed in fall after snow ledge collapses on mountain.”
I learned about this tragedy last night. Scott got up to check on his girls, and I looked at my phone to check the time. I happened to see a message alarming me of what happened. My heart sunk. I shut down, and I went into survival mode as I do every single time I read about another fatality in the mountains. The only difference this time was I had a man with me who desperately wanted to help.
But he couldn’t and no one can.
It wasn’t that long ago that I wrote about what happens to me when another person has fallen as a result of mother nature and her fierce beauty. It’s not that long ago that I explained how badly I find myself needing to seek refuge when I learn of these stories because I am instantly taken back to that day, and I am reminded of the pain and horror I had to endure.
All I think about are those people. Those families, those parents, those siblings, those lovers, and those children.
My heart shatters all over again, but this time it’s for them.
I have made it.
I have made it through the horror, the questions, the nightmares, and the anguish. I have made it, but it’s not over, and it never will be because each time this happens, I remember Nick’s face on the t.v and I remember the confusion I had.
My wounds are still open.
I feel it so much more now because my body is no longer being protected by the shock. This is very hard for people who haven’t been through this to understand. It hurts far more down the road because your body is no longer numb.
My heart aches for those volunteers who worked so hard to find those bodies. Those volunteers that more than likely knew the outcome was not going to be good but probably had a small piece of hope that it just might be. I can relate in a way that is much different but also the same. I have no words to describe the admiration I have for SAR and the other volunteers who dedicate their precious time to help bring home our loved ones. They don’t always get to bring them home alive, but I can tell you that bringing their bodies home is a huge relief to those grieving. I can’t even imagine what it would have been like if they didn’t bring my Nick home. Nick was alone for a short couple of hours on that mountain, and it absolutely killed me because it felt like an eternity. I remember hearing the words “Nick is off the mountain,” and feeling a weight lifted off of me that I can’t even explain.
I sit here, and I wonder, “what if it wouldn’t have happened.” I would be married to Nick, and we might have been pregnant by now. But instead, I sit in the home of a man who has opened his heart to me. I sit here, and I think of our beautifully complicated little relationship that is so new, and I can’t help but smile.
He has two amazing little girls who I absolutely adore, and I have two beautiful dogs that he has found himself having a few adventures with already. But that’s not all; I have a fiancé who I still love and will always love, and Scott has chosen to welcome him into this relationship as well. Last night we referred to this all as a cluster, but a cluster that is so beautiful.
How do you explain to an eight year old why you are wearing wedding rings? You just do, and it was yet another powerful moment for me with an innocent little human with so many questions.
Things are so different when you know the truth. When you know how precious each day is. I find myself laughing inside when he does something that I may have otherwise found irritating, but now I find amusing.
Men are all the same 😉
I often talk about how much I miss Nick’s underwear on the floor, and the mess he would make in the sink shaving. I miss the way he would throw his coat on the stairwell when there was a coat hanger five feet away. I miss how he would throw his keys and wallet and everything else in his pocket on my nice clean island in the kitchen. I miss how he would come home and complain about the drivers on deer foot and how he would beg me to eat chicken wings when I had a healthy meal planned.
I miss all of these things so much, and the beauty of it is, I will not waste time worrying about the small stuff anymore. I will pick up the coat, I will ignore the stuff on the island, and I will just be thankful that there is life.
In a way, I feel like Nick was given the short end of the stick because he had to hear me nag. I know Nick didn’t mind, but I wish I wouldn’t have complained so much. We are all so guilty of it. Here is what I have to say to you; the mess just doesn’t matter. It’s not worth the energy. We all come with our flaws, quirks, and irritating qualities, but that’s what make us who we are, and I realize that now.
I will take all those things and work with them if that means I can have more time. I just want more time.
The other day while I was studying at the ranch Scott came back from a hike and gave me a flower. It was a beautiful purple flower with a name that does not match its captivating vision.
To me it was just another flower but when Scott explained to me the qualities of this flower I was blown away. These flowers are the earliest flowers to bloom, and they can be found blooming while snow is still on the ground.
That night we were laying on the couch in front of the window staring out at Corner mountain. Scott focused on how magnificent it is to see the life that remains on that mountain even through all of the destruction and disaster. Scott was referring to the trees that were still standing. I looked out, and I said, “all I can see is the destruction and the disaster.” I was referring to the snow that had ripped away many of those trees and has now created an image that will haunt me forever.
While I gazed out and tried to see the beauty, Scott reminded me that like the Crocus, I grew and blossomed even through the destruction and that is what makes me powerful.
So now I sit here, and I think about those who are in the midst of chaos, destruction, and pure horror. They are in shock, disbelief, and they fear what is to come, and I can only pray for them. I can only pray that they will find their way and be able to bloom again.
Right now they don’t want to hear it. They don’t want to hear that they will get through it and that things will be great again. They want to mourn their loved one, and they want to deny that life will ever be beautiful again.
The photo that I have attached to this blog is one of Scott’s gorgeous photos, and I wanted to share it with this particular blog because for me it’s powerful and if it can provide peace for even one person, than that is enough.
Life will be beautiful again but only after the darkness subsides, and all I can do now is be there for those who need a bit of hope.
“It has been said – time heals all wounds – I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind protecting it’s sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone” – Rose Kennedy-