There are certain kids I come in contact with in my job that I grow to love. You see these kids everyday, you help them with their homework, you put bandaids on their boo boos, you comfort them when they cry for their mommies, you try to help resolve fights between friends.
I also get to know their parents, some I’ve even become friends with.
Donny and his mom were one of those people for me. I loved them both, very much. Donny was a handsome boy with a personality to match. His mother is one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever met, with the sweetest heart.
I took care of Donny from the time he was in Kindergarten, til he graduated from 6th grade. This year, he was a senior in high school. (God, I’m old!)
Today while I was at work, watching a movie with the kids, 2 girls I used to have in day care came in and said they needed to talk to me. I walked out of the room and noticed they were crying. I knew this wasn’t going to be good.
“We wanted to tell you that Donny was in a car accident last night and was killed.”
My heart sunk, I felt numb. I just stood there with my mouth wide open. I couldn’t believe what I just heard.
I instantly thought of his mother and his little sister (who I also took care of). I immediately wanted to leave work and just go hug her.
My heart is broken.
I drove by his house after work, I wanted to tell his mom how sorry I was. I wanted to hug her and cry with her and tell her I loved her. I drove by, but I couldn’t stop. I didn’t know if that was ok to do. I didn’t know if it was too soon. I didn’t know if she would think it was rude of me to come by so soon.
But I wanted her to know I cared. You know? I drove by 3 more times, wondering what to do, wondering what was the right thing to do. In the end, I drove off.
I think I made the wrong choice. I know I should have just let her know I was thinking of her. I should have hugged her and told her I was sorry. Just so she knows I care. Just so she knows I’m here if she needs me.
I chickened out.
These situations are never easy, but I have learned from experience that you should never turn away from friends who are hurting. They need to know they are loved now more than ever.
I’ll make right and go see her tomorrow. I know it won’t be easy, I know it will be heartbreaking, but I have to do it.
I have to.
I hope Donny is at peace. He was too young to go.