September 23, 2008

on a sad day...

You know how sometimes something happens that makes you really look at your life from a different angle? Appreciate things more? The last few days have been a bit of a whirlwind. Emotionally, at least.

On Saturday morning, while sitting at work, I was told that there had been an airplane crash. I tried to convince myself that it couldn't possibly be as bad as it seemed. Unfortunately, it was.

One of the pilots, Sarah, I'd known for a little more than a year. Granted, we weren't really friends. I only knew her as a customer, as a smiling face on the other side of the desk. But I can say, in all honesty, that she inspired me more than I ever told her. She was one of those people who never had a bad word to say about anyone. She had a smile on her face, no matter what. She went out of her way to get to know me and ask me about my day every time she was in. She would always confuse my friend M and I, mixing up our names and such. She would laugh about it, and keep trying. She was incredibly sweet, beautiful and refreshing.

I'm pretty sure that every time she was around, at least one of us would say something to the effect of, "Geeze. Could she be any nicer? What a peach." Or, "I think she is my new favorite person ever, in the history of people." Or, "Guys? It's official. I want to be her." And now, looking back, I think that perhaps I should have voiced my appreciation of her more often. People need to know these things. Why don't we tell people these things?

When I found out she died, it knocked the wind out of me.

Sarah was 31 years old. She had so much life left to live. And I think that's what I've thought about most since it happened. I think about how unfair it is that she never gets to have a wedding or be a wife, or have babies. She never gets to experience anything else. Since I didn't know her that well, I wonder about her alot. I wonder what her hopes and dreams were. I wonder what she was planning on doing next week. I wonder what her favorite song was, and what went through her mind the moments before she died.

Is that terrible of me?

I've never lost anyone close to me. My great-grandparents died when I was very young, but those are the only people I remember losing. After this, I can't imagine what I would be like if I lost someone I loved. I remember times when I've cried just thinking about how I couldn't handle it if that exact thing happened. Especially if it was such a tragic accident. When I was young, I'd tell my parents, "Don't ever die, okay?"

The last few days I've been doing alot of thinking. Over the weekend, I couldn't stop snuggling with Jay. I kept wondering what it would be like if the next day he was gone. I can't even imagine my life without his smile, his goodnight kisses, his voice. Or even without his shoes and clothes scattered throughout the duplex, or without his apparent need to tickle me until I scream my head off. All of those things. And it's scary to me, because you never know when those you love could be taken away. I know that I shouldn't even think about things like that, but when things like this happen, I can't seem to help myself.

I think too much, sometimes.

Please keep all the victims of the crash and their loved ones in your thoughts and prayers. I can't even start to imagine the depth of their loss and sadness at this time.

Give the ones you love an extra hug and a kiss, too. Remember to give thanks. And also? If someone brings a smile to your face or happens to make your day a bit better, always take the time to let them know.

21 comments :

  1. Life can be so short and I often wonder how I would deal with losing someone in my immediate family. I don't think I'd handle it in an admirable fashion at all.

    We have had two different family friends deal with the loss of a child and it's just so incredibly sad. I don't know how they have managed to keep it together and be an encouragement to others when I'd be a real mess. It's got to be God.

    Like you say, all we can do is appreciate our loved ones. And thank God for every moment we have on this earth.

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  2. I think your feelings are very normal. I have lost several people in my life. One was an ex who I had a ton of regrets about. I found myself wondering about him alot, and sometimes thinking he was with me. It was odd because we had only dated for a month in high school and I hadn't seen him in years. I also wondered if I was allowed to think of him so much because we weren't close anymore. I can understand all your feelings. Sorry for you loss.

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  3. I've never lost anyone young that I'm close with - but this summer seemed to be filled with loss for those around me.

    It was awful.

    My 27-year-old cousin died in a car accident and a 23-year-old girl (recent college grad of where I work & a mutual friend) died in a car accident.

    Every morning before Mike leaves for work, I beg him to drive safely.

    It's hard not to be scared...

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  4. Dang it! I'm all teary now (have I mentioned I'm overly emotional at times)....I couldn't imagine life with out my hubby....or my family. I've known a few people to pass - one of which was my husband's grandma - that was rough - we had just started dating and I didn't know her incrediably well - but I still miss her...she could give great advice!

    I heard somewhere that if men are less likely to get in a serouse car wreck if they receive a passionate kiss before leaving...who knows if its true but I follow the advice! You can never be too careful!

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  5. How sad :(

    It always seems like the ones who are taken away are the ones with so much to give.

    That is not weird or wrong of you at all. It just goes to show you that we can affect more people in our short little lives than we'll ever realize... and we should take events like this to heart and learn from them, like you're doing.

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  6. This was a great post. I do like your thought about how we often don't tell people enough how much we like them until something bad happens.

    So I want to tell you. I love reading your blog. Your style of writing is so comfortable and ... familiar. I often feel like we're old friends, despite the fact that I don't know you. :)

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  7. I enjoyed this post and it helped me be thankful for all the things in my life I DO have to be thankful for. Lately finding things to be thankful for has been difficult. It is hard loosing someone you love... I've found comfort in leaning on the Lord in certain situations. It's good to be reminded of how precious life is.

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  8. This was such a touching post. I'm glad I took the time to read it today. Losing someone no matter how close or acquainted you are is tough. I'm sorry you lost a friend.

    You are such a sweet girl and I often think that I would like to be a nicer person because of you. I guess I will also take this opportunity to tell you that you have inspired me to start my own etsy. I haven't started it yet, but I will be attempting this weekend to be crafty and make some jewelry, so I can open up my own. I went shopping at Michael's and I bought some beads at a fair and it's about time I did something with them. Thank you for being an inspiration.

    Take care and I hope you don't feel sad for too long. I'm sure that your friend wouldn't want you to dwell on her short lived life, but rejoice in the life she was able to live.

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  9. Oh sweets, I'm so sorry to hear about Sarah. She sounded marvelous.

    I'm terrified of death, and will never leave my girlfriend's side without letting her know exactly how much I love her. I always tell my parents, and brother, I love them before I hang up the phone, because I'm so scared of the "What if". I try not to think about it much, but I find it so hard not to be scared of losing the people I love.

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  10. Sometimes I feel as though my thoughts are too morbid for my own good. I constantly think about what's been on your mind lately. Constantly. I have lost people close to me, and I almost lost my significant other last Thanksgiving. She's a promoter of awareness now for her injury, and we go to all kinds of support groups and such. Shameless plug but (only if you really want to),you can read our story here:

    http://www.brainandspinalcord.org/blog/2008/09/megans-story-of-hope-happiness-and-paralysis/

    (anyone else can also feel free to read it)


    It's bittersweet that it took this happening to live our lives full of love now, but I'm glad it did.

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  11. I wasn't expecting this post at all, but i am grateful for it. I am a huge pop-punk fan, and have had the opportunity to meet Travis Barker a few times(he was nothing less than lovely). I was very very sad to read the news, but it pales in comparison to knowing the person.

    I think your feelings are normal, one of my customers recently died(i work in a shop, but he came in every day, we knew him well), and its very upsetting. We make connections with people on ,lots of levels, but its still a connection.

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  12. I am sorry for your loss. It is sad that it takes something like that to remind us to keep things in perspective, that anyone and everything can be gone in an instant, that we're aren't going to get to hang around forever. Thanks for the reminder today.

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  13. i always ponder things like that. and wonder what i would do if someone i loved was taken away so quickly. it's so sad but yet it's reality. that's why we have to enjoy all the time we have here.

    :)

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  14. Oh I get so nervous about the same things sometimes. Although, with me, I seem to lose someone I love pretty much yearly. I've lost a grandparent, two uncles and an aunt all over the course of the past 2.5 years and it really never gets easier. It's hard thinking about those you love leaving you- I know I'm most paranoid about my intermediate family and my boyfriend. Scary thoughts :/ Hang in there!

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  15. I am sorry for your loss. And it is your loss. Sarah affected you and your life and her absence is a loss. Sometimes we are hit more by the death of those we barely know, especially when they are young, because it makes us feel vulnerable.

    Through you, I know more about her than I did when I read the article that morning. So, Sarah's memory lives on nad you were able to put a person behind her name. Thank you.

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  16. honestly, i don't think it's bad to wonder. I do it too. There are times i cry, wondering what life will be like not having kyles things around when i see things on television. and crying to him makes it seem like it wont happen :) i've wondered many times how the people i knew at such a young age whould be doing or what their dreams and ambitions were before they died. FYI i love you, and am blessed you are in my life lady! You are with out a doubt one of the greatest people i will ever be blessed to know!

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  17. Hey Kerri, I'm so, so sorry to hear about your friend. I totally agree with Dani's comment -- by writing this blog post, you did a wonderful thing because you taught us all about the wonderful girl that was your friend, letting her memory live on and inspire us to be the type of people that leave a positive impression on others. I don't think it's terrible of you to wonder about her fav songs and things like that - instead, it shows you have a big heart and that you care about others. Oh man, I totally know what you mean about thinking too much ... I'm a crazy worrier - I always tell John to drive safe because I'm scared of what will happen if he or someone else doesn't. If he just runs to the store at night by himself, I tell him to be safe. I need to stop being such a morbid person - it def can't be healthy. :( Thanks for reminding us to love and appreciate the loved ones in our lives... XOXO

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  18. I think too much too... I know what you mean when you say you think thinking about Jay and get all panicked... I do the same, sometimes. But it makes me live every day like it's my last, and say I love you EVERY chance I get, and that's not a bad thing.

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  19. I read about this in the paper the day after it happened, and it was such a sad, sad story. It's crazy that you actually knew this girl!! I am so, so sorry. Not that you knew her, of course, but that you lost her. She sounds truly beautiful.
    I'm so glad that you have taken your thoughts and put them down, and that you have chosen to snuggle your husband a little tighter. Tragedy, though awful, can serve as such a strong reminder of how blessed we are to have our loved ones around.

    I have to pray very hard sometimes in order to keep from living in constant fear... fear that something will happen to my husband, my children, my parents, my friends, my friends' kids... I can't even imgaine, and I don't want to, what that would be like. I know it's bound to happen to someone I'm close to someday, but until then I don't want to be afraid, I just want to cherish each moment and be grateful that God has kept them all here so far.

    HUGS!

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  20. Good post. Sad topic, yet still good thoughts. I too have had an emotional week for kind of the same reason. A helicopter crashed in Iraq. One that my husband may or may not have been on. I went all day without knowing. I was never so relieved to get the good news. That day I tought about so much. I too have never lost anyone close to me and I always wonder when it'll be my time to experience such hurt. Although luckily he is safe, his best friend was not.
    It sure does put things in a different perspective and I think its very caring of you to be thinking about this girl.
    It's crazy how in this world someone can have a smile on their face and laughter in their heart and the next moment they are gone forever.
    I'm sorry for your loss. Even though you may not have known her as well as her family and friends, you have still been affected by her story.
    Do not take a moment for granted.

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  21. I do the same thing any time I hear that someone from my high school had passed. I may not have really known them, but I knew who they were. It's just a sad sad ordeal.

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