by Joyce Tremel
Most of you have heard about the two teenagers from Shaler who were killed in motor vehicle accidents in the past two weeks, and the teenager who fell from the trunk of a moving vehicle several weeks before that. Although I don't know any of the families involved, I can't help feeling almost overcome by their loss. To me, losing a child would be the worst thing that could happen. Any other loss would be tolerable, but not the death of your flesh and blood.
It's even affected the guys I work with. One said this morning, "I never thought I'd be going to the funerals of two teenagers in the same week. It makes me realize my problems are nothing." This guy has a son (a senior at Shaler) who has had some major health issues in recent months and just had a feeding tube removed.
In the writing community, I recently read that agent Daniel Greenberg lost his two year old son, Samuel in a car accident. Samuel and his one year old brother were thrown from the vehicle, still in their child safety seats. Samuel was killed. His brother survived and both his parents suffered from head injuries.
As a writer, I hope to somehow remember these devastating feelings of loss, but as a mother, I don't like them one bit. I want to push them aside. I don't want to feel vulnerable. I don't want to think it could happen to me. So, I'll let myself grieve with these parents briefly, then I'll tuck the feelings away for another day.
I know Thanksgiving is over, but I want everyone to be thankful for what they have. I want everyone to hug their family members, especially their children. Even if they're big, bad teenagers, tell them that you love them. Sure, they'll be surprised--or suspicious. They could think you're nuts. If you're lucky, they might even hug you back.