Hawkeye, I hear you. When my teacher/demi-god, Mr. Pearson died, I felt so lost and adrift and confused. I was just lucky that I didn’t go the way of the booze and the drugs, because I didn’t think of that. I half-heartedly finished my degree, but it was my belief in a higher power that really suffered. Because it also didn’t occur to me to do good for others as a way to heal myself, not for years, I felt adrift, powerlessly being tossed about in life.
Now that I am older and wiser, when it comes to making a decision, I often think, “What would Mr. Pearson do?” And try to do that. He was a man of such moral integrity that using him as a compass is always right. Still a struggle, but in the correct direction.
I really admire your path — gods know it’s not easy. As the Navy Seals say, “The only easy day was yesterday.” But to live your life to honor those who’ve passed, to have their death not be in vain, but to live through you to make their memory proud, that is greatest gift you can bestow them. Good on you! You inspire me.