Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Things That Hurt

It's amazing that your heart can ache over the loss of someone you didn't even know that well, but that's the way it is here today.  The picture below is of Nathan at the party for his 8th birthday.

James, Nathan, and Matt, Fall 2010

He is with two of Alan's "hockey boys," which is what you are called in this house if you play ice hockey for my husband.  These two young men gave up their Saturday afternoon for their coach and his son. They put on big smiles and, for two and a half hours, kept half a dozen 8 year olds busy and happy (and safe) playing football, basketball, and silly soccer. They even thought to bring Nate a gift and, at the end of the afternoon, they flatly refused to take any payment for all their hard work.

They were fun and generous and thoughtful, and it was wonderful to watch them.  Afterwards they never failed to stop and say hi to me when I would see them at school, or a game, or their graduation parties.  Just the kind of person I want my sons to become.

This morning we got "the call."  James, who had stopped off at the rink to see my husband and the team yesterday, had been killed in a car accident later that night.   The sense of loss and wasted potential is overwhelming.  If this is what I feel for a kid I knew only a little, I can't begin to imagine what the grief is like for the people he belonged to the most.

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