The Candle

I went to Survivors of Suicide Loss Day this weekend and everyone lit a candle in memory of their loved one(s). While the conference itself was great, it was the candle that moved me.

As I stared at it I felt & thought many things.

The Candle

5-22-10                 11:31am

  • Guilt – I’m supposed to do something to save it but I don’t want to.
  • Fear – doing something to help it will hurt me or draw attention to me.
  • Helpless – there is nothing I can do to affect the time this candle burns, what I do won’t matter, won’t make a difference.
  • Hopeless – It’s not my place
  • Life – As I watched I noticed a brown speck near the wick just twirling, a sign of life.
  • The Pain of Waiting – I don’t know when but I can’t stop it. I just wait. Like D- and the bus stop. I just want it to stop. I want to blow out the candle. Just make it stop. Please.

I’ve noticed no one else at my table is watching the candle.

When it was lit, I didn’t pay attention. As it burned, I didn’t watch. But I noticed when the white candle was completely clear. Now there’s nothing I can do but watch. If only I had noticed. There’s nothing I can do. This candle is going to kill me.

I want to protect the candle. Fear of someone blowing it out. Wondering if that would be more therapeutic.

I don’t want to eat lunch. I don’t want to leave it.

People eat lunch and talk.

I just watch…

I miss my dad…

I’m tempted to ask how long these candles burn. But no one can know.

I’m angry I can’t change it.

Didn’t want to leave but had a good conversation.

Automatic Thought – I shouldn’t be here.

Angry. Damn it! Go out candle.

Angry – my perspective is so different. I shouldn’t be here.

I forgot & went back to blow out the candle. The effect. And I walked away.

I know the people around me did not experience this candle as I did. But it was so powerful. To go through so many emotions and stages of trauma and grief in such a short time with a candle is amazing. It’s powerful and difficult but good. Thank God for the candle.

© Michelle Routhieaux 2010

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3 thoughts on “The Candle

  1. Your comments about the candle are very thought provoking, Michelle. I find looking at a flame is fascinating and the candles we lit in memory of our loved ones were especially meaningful. It is a simple gesture we can make periodically to keep our loved ones in our lives.
    Bonnie

  2. “Let that spark of destiny burn inside out and catch the glimpse of Joy that you know you desire so much”. Ummmm I forgot to mention that I’m trying to write something better this days. If music can not help, then go to my block for a test of life. It’s good, well…Is mine…or at least I’m trying. Anyways, invitation is out!
    Have a great day!!!
    Great Love,
    Mirian :D

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