Thursday, October 21, 2010

Life and Death

A glooming peace this morning with it brings.

The sun for sorrow will not show his head.

Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things.

Some shall be pardoned, and some punished.

-The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare.

I do not think I will teach Romeo and Juliet to my students this year.

Last night we got word that one of the students at my school committed suicide. She was a senior. I'd never taught her, but I'd seen her around. She was very involved in ASB and part of a fun group of friends. Her boyfriend, a boy who'd graduated a few years ago, had been deployed and, for some reason, broke up with her recently.

She didn't come to school yesterday, and when her parents came home in the late afternoon, they found her.

My students are in deep shock and mourning.

I found out about it last night-after my husband and I had gone out to celebrate the new baby my brother and his wife are having.

It will be the first baby on our side of the family- My parents will be grandparents!

These two things so close life...premature death...

We live in a strange, confusing world.

I sure hope Jesus can make sense of it all- because I sure can't.


  1. Sandra, I'm so sorry to hear of your school's loss. I work at a middle school, and understand how close everyone is, even with those who they don't regularly interact with. Furthermore, I grew up in a very rural setting and had shared classrooms with most of my peers since kindergarden, so I know the loss of a student is felt all that much more.

    I'll be thinking about all of you in the coming days.

  2. How difficult to comment about your post, but thank you for sharing.

  3. Each day at work I am care for people who tried to commit suicide or have suicide ideation. These are the ones who survived. The others like the student at your school are successful at their attempt. The patients overdose, walk into traffic, hunker down beside train stations waiting, they drive their cars into embankments, cut their wrists, point guns at their heads while onlookers scream, swallow bleach or try to hang themselves. Some just threaten they will find a way to end their pain. These are at the edge of the insanity that causes a human to kill or try to kill themselves.
    Suicide is the ultimate gift that keeps on giving. Parents, siblings, relatives and friends live with the devastating aftermath continually. There is no reprieve.
    I started crying when I read your profile of the student. So many people cannot cope with the dissolution of a relationship. We human beings are heavy bonders and having your emotional body brutalized causes unfathomable depths of pain. Life loses it color. There is nothing but hopelessness regarding the future. Your world shrinks down to just you and the agony you are living in. You want relief.
    Many of the patients come in with shocking deep scars from "pain relief" cutting. It is a very dark world for many.
    I am so sorry about this girls death. On the other hand there is joy at Grant and Meghan's news. The juxtaposition, as you so aptly describe,
    is confusing. The student' death makes each of us afraid of the suicide possibility within everyone. Your brother's exciting news reminds us of the as equally powerful urge to continue this group of unpredictable folks knowing they carry the power to bless us or destroy us.
    I pray for all the news, the joyful and the tragic. May you tap wisdom as you are wrestling with each one.
    Thanks for sharing so eloquently.

  4. Very sad how these things happen. And then the gift of something joyful to contrast the pain. I suppose that is how we survive - the contrasts.