“Do you see a light at the end of the tunnel?”
That’s the question almost everyone keeps asking me, and so far it’s the one thing that doesn’t make me cringe or want to cry or run outside and punch my fist in the ground. It’s an innocent, heartfelt question that doesn’t make any assumptions about what happened or is happening or who is to blame.
Sometimes people send me advice and it is so colored by their own pain, pain that I honor and regard with reverence, but it wants to believe so much that isn’t true about this. This thing that I’m living through. This thing that is full of details and dynamics and its own kind of pain, a kind whose shape I think I have figured out and then I turn it over and find another side.
I don’t mind the advice, not at all. This experience wants to tell its story, and our common ground is the struggle. We share the simple hope that no one at the store will notice that we are wearing sunglasses indoors, sunglasses we won’t take off until we’ve pulled into the garage and slouched over the steering wheel to resume sobbing.
And no matter who is to blame, no matter what happened or is happening we’ve each had those moments when the panic rises so fast in our throats that to hold it down is like swallowing the deep end of a pool. But then we make dinner, we help with homework, we somehow walk from one end of the room to the other. Like so many of you have assured me, that light at the end is around here somewhere. And sometimes just a glimpse of it is enough to get me to the end of the day.