Yesterday, we celebrated 30 years with my very special son, Ryan. Until about 6 pm, when the celebration stopped short. A dear friend posted an unspoken prayer request. I requested she text me. The text I got stopped me in my tracks – “Stacey Harlow passed away”. WHAT???? Not possible. Stacey, a young man in his early 30’s, apparently healthy, with a young family, police officer, Army veteran, all around good man, GONE????? Not really sure of the reason at this point, but it appears to be natural causes. I used the word flabbergasted last night, and I think I still am.
This morning, I wake to a friend posting that “a bright light has gone out last night” and “hug your kids tight”. My brain went “Huh?” Got up, got my coffee, and did a little reading of posts, to find that mutual friends of many I am friends with lost their 22 year old son last night when he was hit by a car on the side of the highway. There are simply no words. My youngest son is 20 – I just cannot fathom the depth of their pain. Tim and Casey Leanne Maddox, you have my deepest sympathies, and if I can do anything for you, please do not hesitate. Corbyn is now your guardian angel, I firmly believe that.
Most of you know I do a lot with cancer patients, and others with life threatening or life changing illnesses. I start college in 10 days to get a degree to allow me to do more. When one of the cancer patients dies, we can comfort ourselves with the knowledge they are no longer suffering. When someone dies of an advanced age, we can comfort ourselves with the thoughts and memories of their long life. But the two deaths that have faced me this weekend don’t have those comforts. They have a huge WHY attached, and that is a question I don’t believe, no matter what degree of education I attain, or how many years I live, I will ever have the answer to.
Hug your kids. Love your spouse. Tell your parents how much they mean to you. Life can change irrevocably in an instant – and there are no do overs.
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