This blog is meant to be light-hearted and fun to read. It is supposed to give parents something to relate to, and for you non-parents, maybe the stories give you a twinge of relief that you don’t deal with the strange behaviors and circumstances a child brings into your life. But parent or not, life isn’t always carefree and joyful. More than anything, this is a blog about life, and life can come at you like a ton of bricks. One moment it can be smiles, giggles, good times, and happiness…pure contentment with your existence. The next moment, your world can be turned upside down. I know from experience, because the mood in our house went from pleasant and happy, to somber and mournful in one small instant.
A few days ago, my son’s classmate died. John was 5 ½ years old. We hadn’t seen him since preschool let out for the summer, but he was perfectly healthy at that time. Big, strong, tough, HEALTHY. He was getting ready to start Kindergarten. All was right with the world.
A neighbor of the family said she saw John playing with his little brother on numerous occasions and that her day was brightened by the sight of him bouncing around, and the sounds of his carefree joy. He enjoyed life. He was sensitive and kind. He was an amazing big brother. He made my son laugh by making funny faces. He loved his teachers, his parents, his brother, his pets, his friends. Until he got sick a few weeks ago, life was happy, good, and normal.
I just got back from the funeral home, filled with 5 ½ years worth of adorable pictures. John with his brother and parents on the beach. John with friends and cousins. John in Halloween costumes. John at his baptism. Many of them were of John in goofy and silly pictures that are just like the ones that fill our scrapbooks…just like our pictures except they belong to a different Mom and Dad. A Mom and Dad whose pain is beyond any that I can comprehend. Two people who will have to fight really, really hard to find the strength to get through this. My heart breaks for them.
But as I type this, my two resilient kids are running around the house, filling it with their laughter and my heart is overflowing. And, I can only pray that someday John’s family will once again find happiness. I hope that their lives never, ever again get turned upside down, and that they will find peace. I hope that somehow, someway they will be able to say that all is right with the world. John would want it that way.