In an instant, life changed forever for 2 people and their families yesterday. A young teenage boy set out on his moped for a friend’s house with surely nothing on his mind but some leisurely summer activity like swimming or basketball. Meanwhile an adult ventured innocently out on a Saturday in their car going somewhere now trivial and meaningless. The car and the moped tragically cross paths, leaving the boy’s family dealing with the death of their son.
Counselors no doubt know just the right thing to say to someone grieving the death of a loved one, right? Aren’t they the experts, the ones who have been professionally trained in how to deal with this? The truth is, there is no amount of comfort anywhere on earth to really take away the pain of such a tragic event. It is indelibly emblazoned on the soul forever. It haunts mercilessly in the middle of the night. Grief ravages the spirit, saps the strength, and brings faith into question. It kicks a person in the gut when they thought things were getting better. It is a hemorrhaging that insists on bleeding despite all efforts to make it stop. The only thing anyone can do to endure such a horrific experience is to put one foot in front of the other. One must keep going and trust that eventually the bleeding will reduce to a manageable trickle.
The basic design of life is that it continues on in the midst of death, even when it feels like the world should take pause, at least for a minute. This boy should be lazing in his backyard with the summer before his sophomore year of high school still stretched out before him. His mother should be carelessly engrossed in whatever activity she likes to do on a Sunday afternoon. Instead, she’s no doubt planning a funeral and wondering how she’ll ever manage to get through the next minute, let alone the next hour, days, weeks, and months. Rest in peace, Morgan Clouse, and God be with your family.