By nature, we are a very reactionary society. When there is a disaster, we hold fund raisers and weep for the poor souls who have been hit with tragedy. We give donations of food, clothing, money, and most importantly, time. But when the camera pack up and head off to the next disaster, so too do our thoughts. However, for those affected, life continues. Loss remains in the forefront, and sadness comes in waves just when you think you have your feet underneath you again.
I want to thank everybody who sent well wishes and prayers last week when my wife lost her 18-year-old son to diabetes. It was received with thanks and appreciation. However, as life resumes to some sense of normality for me, I am watching how Denise continues to have moments where she seems fine, only to be reduced to tears the next instant. I have seen her find importance in things that mean nothing to anybody save her as she tries to gather all her fondest memories and keep them safe, like she is afraid they might vanish if she is not careful.
For her, life is not back to normal, and I have come to accept that, in some ways, it never will be again. She lost a child who was just finding his way. For her, she has a new path to carve in her life; new, because it will be missing something. And the thing is...she will do so with grace. She will find ways to laugh and smile and live. But it will never be the same, and that is the scar left by tragedy. It will tug just when you think you have forgotten or made it past.
So...what does this have to do with you? All of us know somebody who has suffered loss to an extent. Hell, each of us have suffered some sort of loss in our lives. So today, take a moment and remember somebody who you know that has suffered. It might be last week, last month, or last year. Let them know that you are thinking about them. No reason need be given...but you never know if maybe you did so at just that moment when sadness was trying to gain a foothold. And maybe you were there for them when they suffered that loss. All you are doing is holding their hand for that moment just as you did before, and letting them know that things will indeed be okay. Is that so hard?