A precious student I teach lost his dad earlier this week. My heart aches for this student. My heart aches for his older brother and older sister. My heart aches for his mom. My heart, in general, just aches.
Death is so hard for my little mind to comprehend. I just can't grasp the finality of it. It makes my chest hurt and my mind wander and I have to take really deep breaths. Death makes me think of my very own loved ones. I know it sounds rather awkward to think like that, but it's the truth. Whenever someone dies, whether I personally know them or not, I start to think about those I do know personally. Our school guidance counselor talked about this some when she came around to each classroom to speak with students. She talked about how death and pain and suffering is upsetting to so many that aren't directly affected because we try to put ourselves in the shoes of those who have lost. What would we do? How would we feel? How would we cope? I do that. I did that earlier this week. I'm doing that now.
All day long my heart ached for my precious student. My heart was broken that he wouldn't be able to see his dad again or talk to his dad again or ever go on another family vacation with his dad again. I thought about my own child and how my world and her world would just be turned completely upside down if she had to experience and endure the death of a parent. And then I thought about his mom and how she had lost her husband, her other half, the love of her life. And that's when it became too much and I thought my chest might just explode. Just the thought of that happening in my own life makes it hard to breathe. I literally have to stop and catch my breath. I can feel tears filling my eyes and that lump move up my throat. I have to stop and remind myself that it's not happening to me.
Things can happen in an instance. Things can happen even when we are busying doing the things we cherish and love the most. Things we don't understand. Things we don't expect. Things we aren't prepared for. It's moments like these that rattle us and make us really think about things. And it's moment like these that are harsh reminders to appreciate what we do have and those who are with us.