The night of the 2012 mass movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, was supposed to be a special night for 24-year-old college sweethearts Amanda Lindgren and Alex Teves. They had just moved into their first apartment together and made plans for a romantic dinner and a movie to celebrate. Alex surprised Amanda with cupcakes and the couple snuck in a kiss just before the movie started.
During that midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises, a masked gunman entered the dark theater and opened fire, killing 12 people. While Amanda survived the horrific shooting, Alex was killed while heroically protecting her.
A year after the tragedy, filmmaker Jonas Elrod visited Amanda in Colorado to follow her journey to move forward while still carrying her love for Alex. In the above clip from "In Deep Shift with Jonas Elrod," he meets Amanda at her apartment, the home she had planned to share with Alex.
The apartment remains untouched, as if time has been standing still. Moving boxes still fill the living room. A pile of Alex's clothes lays on the floor, right where he left them. The water bottle he used sits on the kitchen counter, one year later.
"I just didn't have the heart to move them," Amanda says. "It just felt like he would be more gone, and I don't feel like he's gone, you know? So I didn't want to just put him away."
"It may seem silly, a water bottle," she says. "But I see it every day and it's even just the tiniest piece of comfort."
Amanda lives with an immeasurable loss and has been struggling with the idea of leaving Colorado, the place where she and Alex fell in love. Later in the episode, Amanda's family is able to help her move home to Arizona where she can get the support she needs.
"For a while I was just focusing on trying to breathe," Amanda says. "Trying to just figure out what reality really was. I'm having a hard time just understanding what my life is now, because we had planned a beautiful life. Just a beautiful life and someone stole that from us."