I Thought It Would Be Easier to Move On

No matter how hard I try, I will never feel whole again.

Losing someone in your life is like having a puzzle without the final piece; almost complete, yet there will always be a piece missing.

Illustration by Jazzmyn Roman

Losing someone in your life is like having a puzzle without the final piece; almost complete, yet there will always be a piece missing.

Everyone always says that things get easier to handle the longer you deal with them. They say that healing takes time. But how much time does it actually take? I wish they could give me a number. A week, two months, five years, a decade. Any measurement of time to put things into perspective, but they can’t. All they can do is offer words that feel meaningless and do nothing to ease the sharp pain of loss. 

Movies and television shows make loss seem so simple: The main character loses someone, and then they go on a journey of getting used to life without that person. By the end, they always find peace; they come to terms with the fact that that person is no longer in their life and they find closure and once again find happiness within themselves. But that ease is deceiving.

Some people don’t find peace. I haven’t. There are things everywhere I look that remind me of what I once had. Life is built like a puzzle: it’s fragile and each piece holds a specific place. When one piece goes missing or no longer fits, it leaves a hole that can never be filled by anything else. That hole will always remain; that loss will always be there, and there will always be reminders of what someone once had. 

I’ve lost someone to death. His life was taken as quickly as lightning strikes the ground. Everyone said that grieving takes time, that everything would be okay. They made it seem so easy, yet not a day goes by where I don’t think about him. Every time I see a motorcycle I think of the day he died. Every time I look down at the purple band on my ankle, my heart aches. I can’t move on. 

I’ve lost someone to addiction. He found ways to feel numb rather than feel pain. Not only did he hurt himself, but he hurt his family. He didn’t die, but a part of him did. Knowing that he still feels that pain every day makes it all that more difficult to move on. I see and hear things everywhere that remind me of him. I can’t move on when I see him in everything. 

I don’t think anyone ever moves on, I think we only ever get better at coping. As easy as it seems to move on, grief is a process that never truly ends. Loss is life altering no matter the form. Loss leaves an empty hole in all of the lives it passes through. That hole never gets filled, we just learn how to keep our life in balance with that piece missing. Some moments we lean a little too far to the left or a little too far to the right, and it’s in those moments when we remember how balanced we used to be. It’s in those moments when we realize that we never truly move on.