How do parents go on after they’ve lost a child?
I wonder this almost daily, because it seems, sadly, that parents are losing their children every single day. Whether due to war, senseless gun violence, illness, or in the case of the hockey players from Humboldt, an accident.
Everybody says, we’re not meant to bury our kids. That is not the way the circle of life was intended to be. Because it’s not. It’s simply unnatural to being standing at your child’s graveside.
Each day I give thanks that my three daughters get from point A to point B alive, and safely. This is not a guarantee that any of us going about our daily business will end up where we’re intending to go. Such is the case for the parents of the fifteen who died in the bus accident in Saskatchewan.
Putting our kids on buses to travel to hockey games is normal in Canada. My sister in law has done it with her two older sons, and currently still is with one who is being shuttled around with his junior team all over America to play games. It is a right of passage if you’re a Canadian kid who plays hockey. Hell, if you’re a Canadian kid you’ve also piled onto a coach bus to go hours north of a big city for summer camp. I would always say a little prayer whenever my girls were going on a road trip adventure that didn’t involve me being at the wheel. I’ve always thought if there ever was, God forbid, to be an accident, I’d want to be with them. I would want to go with them.
It’s just not something a parent is ever fully prepared for, losing a child, suddenly, in an accident.
One of my middle girl’s girlfriends had a friend killed by a drunk driver just a few weeks ago. She was a passenger in an Uber. She had done the right thing. She went out for a night of fun that involved drinking so she didn’t drive, she was responsible, she was mindful, and respectful of human life. Yet another person wasn’t, and now she’s gone. Her parents will never hear her laugh again, or see what life has in store for her.
The same with these talented young hockey players. Nobody will ever know what might have been for them.
The loss must be absolutely devastating. Crushing. Not only for the parents/loved ones, but the families who billeted these athletes, and the bus driver, who probably has a wife and family. All these broken hearts, makes me wonder how. How will they carry on? What do you do with that sort of grief, the never getting the chance to say goodbye, to tell them that you love them one last time, or let them know how important they are to you??? All of this must never leave you, it must play over and over in your mind. “The What Ifs”, the “I Wish I had…” must be the most difficult things to come to terms with. Well, right after coming to grips with the fact that they’re gone…
From one mother to another, my heart is with you, and I’m deeply sorry for your loss. May God be with you all today and always.