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For the past two days I have been overwhelmed by this great feeling of sadness. I say “sadness” because I can’t think of any other word to describe it. It started on the Tuesday I came back from Charleston and sat in my room and listened, and there was nothing. I was just sitting there listening to music when Sam started talking to me on AIM. I guess when you’re this sad it’s obvious, even over the internet. Before I knew it he said he was coming over whether I liked it or not. He got the house around 1 and we sat at the top of Mr. Dobbins field on his tailgate and mostly didn’t say anything. It was then looking at the sky that I first realized what I was feeling. This big huge sky, brilliant and full of stars and my breath hanging against it. Brilliant, beautiful, and cold. I realized how insignificant I was, sitting on this truck next to this boy who was suddenly a stranger to me, looking down, knowing that the light across the field was the house of a girl who no longer exists. And I realized that I, we, are holding on to the greatest sadness. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to shake it. There’s this constant pain in my chest, right where my heart is supposed to be. I can’t wake up in the morning, mostly because my first thought is “goddamn it, this is still happening” and then I cry.

That night sitting on the tailgate was the first time I said it out loud: I don’t believe in God. How can I? How can I believe in something that allows so much pain, so much death, so much sin. I guess saying “sin” doesn’t make much sense considering I just stated I don’t believe in God. But with, or without religion there is still sin. There is sin against the earth, against humans, against everything – any action that hurts, destroys, or damages any living thing is a sin. I don’t understand the meaning of faith. I used to say, it’s called faith because there is no proof. My proof was in my mother, in her faith, because how could my mother believe in something so much and how could I watch God fail her. He did, and with that moment that he ignored her every prayer, I turned my back on him, because he turned his back on me and my loved ones first.

This realization intensified following the truly evil emails that were sent from Rocky (he is no longer my uncle, and I will not address him as so). How could it come to this? How? How did our lives become nothing but this big mass of hate, blame, judgment, and tears? I am so sad, so sorry for this wreck that continues to pile up. I am so sorry that I have to wake up another day. So sorry that I can’t bare to be around my friends anymore because I know my sadness is no longer something I can hide, I don’t want them to see it – not because they don’t love me, but because I’m afraid it would scare them. It scared Kathryn, it scared Karee, it scared Sam. They pretended it didn’t, but I can tell it in the way they talk to me now. It’s in this almost gentle voice, like I’m something very fragile, that they’re scared I might break if the wrong thing is done or said. And maybe I am. Maybe this is what it has come down to.

I have been thinking. The world is so beautiful, but in it’s beauty is the glaring brightness, as if a curtain has been pulled back. The curtain was Mama. She kept us safe from the danger that is the beauty of the earth, she was between it and us. And now she is gone and we are stumbling, our eyes blinded by this brilliance, like newborn babies. And maybe our eyes will grow stronger, our legs will learn to work, or minds to grasp this new around us… and maybe we will fall short, because Mama was our strength, a strength that our lives can’t continue without…