Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Moments That Mold Us

All it takes is the sound of an ambulance off in the distance and I am thrown back to that morning in November.   I am standing in my room getting ready for school.   I hear the sound of an ambulance and somehow I just know something is really, really wrong.   I remember a cold chill run down my body.   It really scared me.   I didn't say anything to my family.   Finishing getting ready and the bus ride to school is just a haze, but I do remember praying a lot.   

I had barely entered the foyer of our junior high when I caught pieces of whispered conversations that were making their way around the clusters of students.   An accident.... It was bad...  Someone was hurt....    I searched out my friends.   When they turned around I could see tears in their eyes.   

"It is Lisa."
Lisa in her last school
picture 7th grade

Lisa... we had gone to school since kindergarten.  Tiny.  Petite.  Always smiling.  Quiet.  Shy. Soft Spoken.  Kind.  We all knew that her home life was full of struggle and abuse.  We saw it in her eyes, but she rarely talked about it. 

"What happened?"

Stunned I listened as they told me she had been hit by a drunk driver while waiting on the bus.   She was killed instantly.   A few minutes later the bell rang and our principal told us all to go to class.   All of us stared at each other like we weren't sure how to walk.   Of course now I know that we were in shock.   Somehow we made it to our first period class where a brief announcement was made about Lisa's death and then we were expected to go on with our school day as usual.    (Thank goodness schools handle grief in a much better way now.)

While I had been to the funerals of great uncles and distant relatives, going to Lisa's funeral was the first one that truly was so personal.    The sight of her in her beautiful crimson Christmas dress in her casket is forever etched in my mind.  

Fast forward 33 years...

Tuesday evening I receive a message from one of my friends letting me know one of our classmates had died.    The events surrounding his death were quite tragic.   While talking I can tell that he was very bothered.   In the course of our conversation he tells me that he was there the morning Lisa was killed.   He said he was on the school bus when the drunk driver went flying by them.   He said that when they came around the corner the car was on top of her.    Her parents were hysterical.  Her two sisters were standing motionless and in complete shock.    In his words the bus driver jumped up and began simultaneously praying and speaking tongues.     He and another boy (our classmate who had just died) jumped off the bus and tried to pull the car off of Lisa.    The wheels were still spinning.   No matter how hard he tried he couldn't get the car to budget.   What is imbedded in his mind is the site of Lisa's legs sticking out from under the car.   One black buckled shoe on and one off as if a grotesque reenactment from the Wizard of Oz.    He too remembers being ushered back on the bus where he was sent to school, given a pass for being late and then sent on to class and expected to go on with his day as usual.  

We shared a grief over 33 years old as we remembered that day when Lisa was tragically taken by a drunk driver.   We also grieved over the fact that our friend would so ironically choose a path for his life that led his life to be taken by alcohol as well.

Wise King Solomon wrote, “To everything there is a season… A time to weep...a time to mourn” (Ecclesiastes 3:4).   

This week has definitely been full of those times.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Checking In...

Listening:  Right now it is very quiet.   Both boys are having their online time with their friends and my sweet husband is unpacking his suitcase from his most recent business trip.  
Loving: The fact that my husband is home.  We are so blessed that he has this wonderful job, but we definitely miss him when he travels.   This week his flights were really long because of delays and he encountered a lot of turbulence.   He gave new meaning to "fall into bed" last night.  
Thinking:  I am so excited about getting to spend time with my twin nieces.   My sister has to travel for work so I get to keep them some while their Dad is working.  They are 4 and this is such a fun age.  Of course, I think every age is a fun age!
Wanting: To have all the curriculum decisions for next year made.  I know most organized homeschool moms have already planned next year and ordered their curriculum.   I am not that organized.
Needing:  To make the final decisions on paint colors and flooring for our house.   I have decided that these little paint strips are not doing it for me.  I think I need to just narrow it down to my favorite three and go buy sample cans and paint sections of the wall to look at for a while.  
Advice:   I have been teaching my 9th grade Sunday School girls about keeping "God first".   Last night our youth pastor asked our students, "If you get to the end of your life and get everything you are striving for, is that a big enough treasure to satisfy you?"   It reminded me of the Scripture "Where your treasure is there your heart will be also."  Luke 12:34