Friday, July 20, 2012
He was just a boy.
Today, I helped bury an 18-year old boy. He was loved by his mother and father, adored by his brother and sister, admired by his friends, and liked by just about everyone. There were over 400 people at the service. For many of them, the teenagers, this was the first time death was personal and real.
It was a senseless, unnecessary death. (And yes, any death of a child is senseless and unnecessary.) He was a good boy. He attended church with his family (most of the time). He even volunteered at the church on occasion. When his family needed him, he helped out. (And there were many times this past year that the family needed help - it's been a really rough year for them.) He was also a normal teenager. He had fights with his mother and father, and with his siblings. He stayed out late with his friends. He drove fast. But he always came home.
Until this past weekend, when he couldn't come home anymore. He couldn't come home because he was riding too fast on his motorcycle and didn't survive the crash. And his mother will never be able to hug him, or tell him that it's going to be alright because it won't ever be alright again.
I had to help his mother plan the funeral service. I organized the music, and the scriptures, and helped sort out which photos to include on the service bulletin. I typed the sermon for the pastor. I coordinated the donations that their friends and neighbors gave to help pay for the expenses. And I held his mother's hand and cried with her.
The entire week, as I tried to do my job with love and compassion for the mother and father, all that kept running through my mind was thank God I never had to face this. Pray God that I never have to suffer this.
The funeral was today. I stayed late, finished up the paperwork and helped clean up the sanctuary. Tomorrow, my life will go back to it's regular routine. I'll probably sleep late, meet some friends at Starbucks, maybe complain about how unfair life is. His mom will wake up, only to remember that her son is dead. She'll know how unfair life is.