The other day at work, Husband witnessed the aftermath of what can only be described as a horrific accident. The things he saw, though just a fraction of what was at the scene, shook him to his core. He came home from work shaking and in tears, and his emotional state reminded me that one of the many reasons I fell in love with him is his compassion. Telling me about what he saw, about the sheet left by the coroner and the shapes he saw beneath it, about learning the victim was a young University student, he kept going back to the same phrases. “All I could think of was you and her.” “The lives of his parents will never be the same again. Can’t ever be the same. What would I do?”
This made me think of a few friends I have from my sort of distant past who are parents. Some of my peers have lost children due to illness or accident, suddenly or over a long and arduous journey, and my heart breaks for them every day. The courage that they have to get out of bed in the morning is astounding. They are impossibly strong, and I know that in their shoes my own actions would be less than noble. Some of them are brave enough to share on social media when they are struggling to make it through, even having the wherewithal to ask for support and kindness from friends. I look at them and I honestly have no idea how they do what they do.
To say they are my heroes would be a lie. My heroes are people I want to emulate and I pray to my God and the Universe that I never have to be like them. It would be more accurate to call them Respected Warriors. They have faced an evil I hope to never encounter. They have battled it and continue to battle it, every day. Most days they win, though some they lose. I was thinking this yesterday, as the anniversary of the horrors that occurred to our nation rolled by on September 11, and the idea of my selfishness crossed my mind. I know that I would be almost angry at the national morning, were I one of the Respected Warriors. I would wonder, “Where is my day of mourning, for isn’t my loss just as great?” I would logically understand the need to mourn the massive loss of the one day, the acts of terror acknowledged, the fearless fighting of the first responders and so many others to be recognized, but I would still want my mourning.
Now, there may be a national day of remembrance for parents who have lost a child, but the fact that I do not know about it makes it clear that it is not something publicised or made clear to the country. So here I would like to say, I’m sorry. I am sorry for your loss. I weep with you. I pray with you. I acknowledge your place as a Warrior.