Last week was tough.
Last week was brutal.
Why? Find out here.
Friday, we were out of school for our scheduled "Spring Break". One whole day that I was actually looking forward to having at home to do some things that needed to be done.
Instead, I spent the day crying.
The funeral home was filled with kids and adults alike, all wearing camouflage. I overheard a story in which the funeral home had set up 300 chairs throughout the building. Every single chair held at least one person. Many many more found seats on the floor, in the hallway, or leaning along the walls. The estimate was that there were 500 people inside the building during the service. That does not count the numbers of folks who came and left before service time.
Stories abound detailing the concern and prayers pouring out for our "family". Our girls were in the middle of a softball game on Tuesday afternoon when they heard the news. Tears began to fall, but to the outfield they went. The other team heard what happened and called off the game, saying that they were too far behind to catch up. Once the high fives were over, the other team went to their bench where they placed their gloves and hats. They then made their way to our team where each of their girls hugged each of ours.
The state university rushed at least one of our students and her mother (a teacher here) through while they were attending Freshman orientation for next semester. They got them out in time for the two of them to slip quietly in just as the service was starting.
There were hugs between people that you would never expect for hugs to be. Kids were hugging teachers. They were hugging each other. They were crying in front of each other without shame. Teachers were letting the tears fall in front of all. People who were having spats with others put those aside and came together in their grief.
Schools from surrounding communities sent e-mails or called our counselor offering support and sympathy. Even the state university called to offer condolences. Remember, we are a tiny school. And the state university called.
The hallways are still unusually quiet. They are louder now, but still not at the level they should be. Kids are still in shock. Although, some are wavering still between denial and anger. There is no acceptance as of yet.
We should be grateful that out of the three classmates who were together, only one was taken from us. And yet, we can't rejoice in that fact because one was taken from us.
There are some kids who have started counseling through an outside source because of the stress they have been forced to endure.
I feel silly because I still break into tears at times. And I can't come up with a reason when Crazy Man asks why. Like yesterday afternoon. My MIL hugged me and told me to "have a good week". I am having more trouble than normal putting my thoughts together.
And I am not this child's mom. Nor am I blood related to him. I am just a mom of a classmate who happens to have worked with this child through school. I can not imagine how she feels. And selfishly, I don't want to imagine how much worse she feels if it hurts this badly for me.
If you have read this far, please keep this family in your thoughts and prayers.
Thanks for listening. Tomorrow will be better.
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