A great weight has been lifted. If only the rest would ease up.
It has been a difficult year. The things that could happen have been settling around my shoulders in the form of a constant crick in the neck. I love my friends, and I would do anything for them, including bear their stresses. The empathy gene keeps me from having many friends because I have to truly and entirely love you to keep you close, and I can't just do that for anybody. This came from my sister being my best friend since the day she was born (possibly sooner, but I'm being general as I can't actually remember). It became normal to love one's friend unconditionally.
Here is no timeline, just five families struggling.
Two families have had miscarriages in the past year. I have been there, cried for me and cried for them and cried for three babies--all potentially first children--that I will never know.
Two families have had unjust charges brought against them by the same policing entity. From kidnapping to domestic abuse, only the stress and uncertainty of a trial could weed out what happened from what didn't happen for each of these. Both fathers were given probation- beautiful for the families- for crimes they did indeed commit, which are minor in both cases. The justice system, however flawed, works well enough I can keep my faith in it.
Two families will move away from me in the next year, maybe three. After watching three friends leave already, and making only three since, I am slow to keep up.
One family has broken down completely, needing care and supervision and trust and patience.
Five families, none of them mine. If I had compartments, I'd use them. Instead, my body revolts with headaches and nausea that last for days, and other remnants of shock and shot nerves. When I count my blessings, I am only reminded of those things I have that others don't. Do I have survivor's guilt?
It seems most suspense has truly ended, and next is a series of starts, whether I start helping friends pack, or start knitting another baby hat, or start homeschooling another student, I hope I find in these starts a remarkable lack of this guilt, if that is what it is.