What was and what is and what is only in memory.
Its easy to live in the now and be unbound to the past. However living that way brings reactions to things and fears from half remembered things which are twisted in memory by the inaccuracies of human memory.
To live in the past and have all actions dictated by what was is fraught with an inability to move beyond that point, stuck in an arrested development, held ransom to nostalgia or some other manifestation.
The question is how to live with what was and what is and yet move forwards to adapt to and enjoy what comes. It becomes more profoundly difficult when that encompasses the loss of ones you love. I write the word in the sense of present continuous not past, because in many ways that love is undying. Sure, some people love and forget and move one .. sometimes its due to completion, sometimes its due to growth in their "self" to realise that maybe they didn't love that person, but were projecting a desire to love onto that person because they (quite simply) were there.
For the grieving person living with the reminders of that love makes living hard. These reminders may be the house you build together, the places you visited together or even the scars on your body of things you went through together. So not all can be discarded even if you wanted to.
Though it has been nearly 4 years I struggle with the absence, with the feeling of love that is not possible to be returned. For if I loved someone from afar who never returned my love that would be quite different to having been together in love and without any trauma or fight to be a breakup, with only the daily evidence of it getting better with much more to happen as we aged together to lose that in a single sudden stroke is hard to comprehend.
Humans are designed to be able to carry trust and love for many years , I would argue that from our earliest nomadic times such things were amplified by the evolution of who we are. So I can not forget Anita and the love for her, even though my intellectual brain knows that I'm not just "working away from her, to return later in the season".
Perhaps I will return ... either way I will only know when I die. At that point in time my knowledge will perhaps never be complete (if death is simply the end).
So I remain dogged by who I was designed and shaped into being by evolution of my species, dogged by a beautiful thing - a love shared with a beautiful spirit.