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The past few days, I’ve been afraid to keep track of time. Sometime in the next few days, the one year anniversary of my best friend’s suicide will pass. But I’m afraid to know which day that will be. I’m afraid to wake up that day and know–it was this day.

I’ve been thinking of her a lot these past few days. I built an effigy to burn for the New Year, but I forgot it at Dan’s apartment before we started the 20 minute hike to the bonfire. The effigy was a dedication to her. And I forgot it. When we got the fire going and I realized I had left it behind, it cast a shadow over the rest of the evening–a shadow that I couldn’t tell anyone else about. How could I start their New Year’s off with that?

I’ve been reading a lot about suicides. It seems that winter is the season for that. I started this one essay, thinking it might help me understand what was going through her head, but it’s only turned me around to thinking about my own problems.

That seems to be a common them with everything I’ve been reading. The more I try to understand her, the more I have to ask questions about myself. Or not really ask questions, but confront things–things I don’t understand, things I don’t like.

I feel like I need to do something. I don’t know what, but anything to ease this feeling. I let her down. I wasn’t there. But why? Am I a bad friend? Or am I just too tangled up in my own mental struggle that I’m blind to the struggles of others around me.

 

Everyone seems to be struggling. My parents are drowning in debt–the stress of keeping the business afloat is just barely clenched back through their teeth every time we speak. Friends are in and out of rehab. Everyone I know knows someone in jail–or on the way.

The more I learn about the lives of those around me, the more I wonder how they don’t just give up? I feel like–for me–I’m just barely able to handle this. And I’ve got it pretty good I think.

God I can focus. Not on this. Not on anything. Not now. I have to go.

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