Once upon a time, a young man and a young woman pledged their lives to each other. They spoke of love, and honor, of hopes and dreams, of the family they would raise, and of life they would share until death would finally part them. Neither could have known when they shared those hopes, those dreams, that their world would end before it even had a chance to begin, but that was exactly what happened.
No one expects war to touch their lives, and when it does you try to find the best way to survive, hoping that whatever you choose is going to be in the best interest of your family. You do what you think is going to keep them safe, you do what you think is going to keep them alive, I failed on all counts.
Instead of growing old with the first woman who had stole my heart, instead of watching my daughter grow into a beautiful woman and looking forward to walking her down the aisle, instead of watching my baby boy grow into manhood, I would bury all three.
I accept that some things were beyond my power to change, I accept that the decisions Danijela and I made during those early days of the war in Vukovar we made together, never knowing how much we would regret them. I will forever blame myself for not taking my family to the market with me on that fateful day, but how could I know the very place that on any other would offer safety, would on that one become their tomb?
So, no, I can honestly say that my life has not turned out to be anything like what I expected it to be. If anything, it seemed as if it were a nightmare that I would be doomed to relive over and over as I wallowed in the guilt of failures that were mine alone to bear. But time changes our perceptions and I've finally allowed myself to see the truths I never before could see, and as I have allowed myself to see these truths, I have finally allowed myself to begin living again.
Life goes on...and a new page has begun.