Monday, January 07, 2008

Saturday night after I had gone to bed in a Tylenol Cold induced coma, my dear Chief came to me to tell me that a senior at my high school had been killed that day in a car accident. He wasn't a student of mine, and I didn't know him. But that didn't change how I reacted.

I felt like I had been punched in the chest.

Instantly I am taken back to the night my senior year in high school when the phone rang, my mom called my dad into talk, and then called my little sister and me in to tell us that a close friend had been in a serious car accident. He died two days later. I remember it so clearly because that was the exact moment that I became an adult.

Two short years later I was sitting in friends dorm room when we got that call that one of my oldest friends had been killed that morning in a car accident.

I've been through the same things that his classmates and friends are getting ready to go through. I wonder if a decade from now they will still have a t-shirt hanging in their closet that he left the weekend before he died. Or if his football number will still be ingrained in their mind. I wonder how many of the students in this building became adults this weekend.

I'm also affected in another way. Always before I was on the friend side of things. But now, as a parent to an amazing little boy, my heart is broken for his parents and family. I stayed longer than usual at the sitter's house this morning because Murph had woken and was smiling at me. How do you recover from the loss of a child? If I still can't get rid of a shirt from over 12 years ago, how would I function with that great of a loss? I don't think I would ever recover.

I wonder how many of the students in this building became adults this weekend. And I wonder how many of the adults stayed with their little ones a little longer this morning to sit and watch them smile.


Tara said...

My heart aches for you and your school. We haven't lost anyone in a while, but I remember the feeling so vividly. Hug your little Murph every chance you get.

thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy said...

Well said — even if it does bring back bad memories.

XOXO said...

*gasp* It never ceases to take my breath.