Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Good Old Days aren’t so Good

Since my brother's suicide two months ago I've found myself looking back over my life and re-evaluating everything. One of the things I've thought a lot about and written quite a bit about is who I used to be in my past. I've thought about and written about how active I used to be and how I used to work out a lot, how I used to be a dancer and artist and how I used to try to do everything perfectly. I've also been thinking about how older people often look back on their younger years and consider them "the good old days", and then I wondered if I've (already) become one of those people who only look back.

I don't want to only look back - I want to live in the present and look to the future; but I can't until I make peace with my past. This is where I've been stuck for a while now. The Past. Mine and my brothers. I can't help but feel like he wasted his life and that makes me soooo sad; and it makes me want something different for my own. I don't know what that is right now and I certainly don't know how, but I do know something needs to change....and that something is me.

Mark probably wouldn't love this photo,
 but all I see is my baby brother just like
I remember him for our childhood.
I've been looking at pictures of us as our young selves and we were quite the pair he and I. There was a time when we were inseparable and then there was a time when we hardly knew each other. When I look at pictures of him as a little guy my heart just aches for the person he became.

Where does potential go if it's not explored and honed? In my brothers case it went way off course into a life of drugs, loneliness and self sabotage. I can't help but see some similarities between us - while I'm not a drug addict I do know a thing or two about self sabotage.  I know my brother and I aren't alone in this; there are many of us who know what it feels like to continually get in our own way in our efforts to live the lives we think we want. There are as many different ways to self sabotage as there are people who do it. Why do we do it? What are we afraid of?

This is where I'm stuck.

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