After surrounding myself with stories of loss, I am realizing how completely broken a person can be and still survive. Yes, some of it is autopilot. You eat because you have to not because you care, or you don't eat because you don't have to and you don't care. You can still do things that came easily before. Before, you know. Before you were broken. Before you shattered. Before some of those pieces were completely destroyed.
Those pieces are gone.
You will go on without them because you can. You will go on sometimes when you don't want to go on. You want to just hit the pause button for a day. Just one day to take a time out from everything, but unless you get the flu, you'll go on without that break because you can. You see people who are suffering and wonder how they do it, and you know that you aren't that strong.
But you are.
You would never be able to handle that.
But you would.
You hope that you never have to feel that strength because when you're in it, it doesn't feel like strength. It isn't a choice. You didn't exercise to prepare for needing that strength. But when you see a friend or a stranger who is suffering, you know they are strong.
You're strong, too.
You might have to keep going back to pick up your pieces, and you might have to chew a piece of gum, spit it out, and try to stick some of those pieces back together. You might pour a bottle of glue over your head and then just roll around on your broken pieces and hope that some of them stay this time.
You will keep going because you can.
Because we all can.
Even when we don't want to.