Show us who is guilty
For the next few days, I would be in a haze. Lack of sleep and overbearing grief will do that to a person. I had talked about it over and over. I had delivered the news to several family members. I kept hearing the words “I’m so sorry for your loss” or “That’s so sad, how are you doing?”. These things only made me feel worse, honestly. I couldn’t stand it, because I was sad and sorry that it happened. I wasn’t happy about it and I wanted everything to change back to the way it was because at least then, Maggie was alive.
I made a hasty decision and ran to the next free tattoo I could find and had her full name tattooed on my back. It was an unclean place, but I didn’t care, it was a part of my grieving process. I talked to my mom several times over the phone and listened to Maggie’s favorite songs. These were songs she had written down on her dry-erase board at some point. I have always wondered if they were written down before she made the ultimate decision.
The question of why it happened plays over and over in my head. Even to this day, it’s something that doesn’t make sense. Things were better for her than they had ever been before. Being a teenager isn’t easy and when the hormones and heartbreak start, it seems like the world will end. I question everything. I’ve always wondered if there was a fear-stricken in her, that just wouldn’t leave her be. I wondered if someone said something. Hell, I’ve even wondered if someone killed her and made it look like an accident.
One day before her funeral, I went all the way to Utah to spend time with family. I hadn’t seen them in years because of divorce and separation. I got word that Maggie’s father was going to be there, and her grandmother as well. I was angry at them for the things Maggie had to go through before she was in my mother’s care. As we gathered together for munchies and secret beers (my mother was newly sober living) we laughed, cried, shared memories, and caught up with each other’s lives. We even went swimming. Every time I laughed, I would start crying and feel this major gut of guilt. Like, I wasn’t supposed to be having fun, because Maggie wasn’t there to join in on it. On the day of her funeral, my aunt and uncle, dad, and myself rode together to the church. Before we went inside, my aunt had prayed a prayer that I will never in my life forget.
“Dear Heavenly Father, you know why we are here and you know where Maggie is now. Please, Father God, show us who is guilty of violating this young girl’s peace, causing her to believe that ending her life would be the only way out. Lord, have them fall to their knees and beg for your forgiveness as soon as their eyes meet her body.”
It was true. Her life was hard. It was hard from the time she was born into a dysfunctional family, that abused drugs and alcohol, to the day she left us willingly by her own hands. I can only imagine the things she had to deal with alone. The times she was violated by certain people her father allowed in his house and the times she had to endure our mother’s abrasive and overbearing attitude. Alone, that’s how she felt. I wish she knew that I wanted to be there for her. To Be Continued…