I went to the viewing of Ms. Monica's son last night. It was very difficult and I was really nervous to go. There were a lot of teenagers there. That was really weird. In the past I have only been to funerals of elderly people that have died and, while that is still sad, it seems much more natural.
There wasn't anything natural about seeing a mom grieve, a 7 year old boy not wanting to leave the casket of his brother and all those teenagers crying over the loss of their friend. Nothing natural and completely heartbreaking.
When I went to say hi to Ms. Monica she asked, "Where's my baby, Caleb?" I told her that he wanted to come and missed her very much. She broke down, started sobbing and sat down. I walked away with so much heart ache for this sweet mama.
I am so proud of the way Caleb's school has handled this whole tragedy. There were quite a few of the teachers at the viewing. Caleb's teachers did a great job explaining what happened to the kids. As a family we had been praying for Ms. Monica's son, so it's hard for Caleb to understand why God didn't heal him. It's hard for me to understand. His teachers told him that sometimes God heals us here on earth and sometimes he heals us in heaven. That answer worked for my perceptive, inquisitive and sensitive child.
Caleb and I had the following conversation on the day we found out Ms. Monica's son died:
M: Did you have a good day at school?
M: Did you talk about Ms. Monica today?
C: Yes. Her son went to heaven to live with Jesus.
M: What do you think about that?
C: I don't know.
M: How do you feel about that?
C: Really sad for Ms. Monica. (silence for a while) How do you feel about that?
M: I'm really sad for Ms. Monica too. My heart hurts really bad for her.
C: Mine does too. (silence) But she has another boy.
M: Caleb if something happened to you, I would be devastated. I have Lukie, but no one can replace you. You are my special boy and I love you very much.
C: I love you too.
M: We need to keep praying for Ms. Monica, that God heals her heart.
And then we rode home in silence. Caleb wanted to go with me to the viewing yesterday, but I wasn't ready for that. I don't think that he's ready for that.
I still can't get the image of that sweet 7 year old boy staying so close to his brothers coffin. Please keep them in your prayers.