Most of us have experienced some kind of loss in our lives. Be it heartbreak or losing someone, a pet or something dear to you.
Then we cry ourselves to sleep in sadness, wake up in disbelief to this new world we find ourselves in – a world without them, possibly get angry, and repeat the cycle in whichever emotion decides to show itself first.
If we are lucky, a happy memory slips through once in a while, but it almost always leads us straight back into sadness. It’s as if we feel too guilty about moving on or moving on too soon, and maybe we should.
Moving on disregards the past, whether it be the experience from a previous relationship or memories shared with someone long gone. What we should really aim to do is to move forward with those experiences and memories; honouring them in how they helped build us – because who are we without our past?
We see that reflected in this story of a boy grieving his mother, too guilty to move on even months after her passing, in a city that is moving on without him.
Returning to his old home, which is now owned by someone else, Roy picks up his belongings, a standard-issue cardboard box containing all the memories of his mother. He ends up on a night out with his friends but chooses to be sullen, out of grief.
A stranger made him realise that he had to move forward, not move on.