This week was tough.
My niece and Cooper were exposed to real life at its ugliest. A family in our town lost their daughter in one of the most horrid ways imaginable. My niece lost a friend, and teammate and role-model; Cooper in his proximity to his cousin, lost a piece of his innocence and by nature of his compassionate heart, is shouldering part of the burden his cousin carries.
The details aren’t important; but the conversations that my sister and I had with our kids were of the highest importance. I am angry, because our kids shouldn’t have to face the ugliness of real-life at 9 and 10-years old. Hell, we shouldn’t have to face them at 30 and 40 and 50.
You have the conversation, because that’s what mama’s and daddy’s do when their kids are afraid and questioning; we talk, and cry and pray and talk some more. Then we go to bed exhausted and distraught because these hurts are the ones that a hug and Band-Aid can’t fix. We ache because there is another parent in our same small town, who is laying in their own bed; broken and telling themselves just breathe in and out and in.
You wake up the next morning with a heaviness that permeates your soul; and you hug your kids tight, because you never know. You just never know. The spilled milk and the lost sock just aren’t that important. You send your kids to school with a moment of hesitation; one more hug and one more I love you.
The hollow follows all day, and every so often you stop to cry out to God, “Please Lord, comfort this hurting family; grant them peace and rest and a chance to grieve well. Lord, in the midst of their grief give them moments of peace and clarity. Give me words of comfort and wisdom when my kids ask the tough questions, the why’s and the wonderings. Lord, spare my family the heartache of tragedy, give us a lifetime. Oh Heavenly father please.”
This week was tough. Really, really tough.