The holidays are over. But, sometimes events stop us in our tracks. Death never leaves us; it’s one reason why we so urgently celebrate Hanukah, Christmas and the New Year. We have this blessed life to live. So we grab it.
Our guest blogger, Heather Edwards, tells us another tale. It is a true story about a child who lost a classmate. How are we to help children grieve? And, what do they teach us in the process?
A Child’s Sadness:
On Christmas Day this year, my 7-year-old cousin Evan began to cry in the midst of family merriment. A sudden full body sobbing experience had overcome him. He looked up at me; face soaked with tears and exclaimed, “My friend died today. She’s in heaven now.” He tearfully explained that his classmate lost her battle against cancer during the early morning hours of Christmas Day.
Evan had many questions, and many tears. He wanted to know if she is still in pain. He wanted to know if people in heaven can open their eyes. He wanted to know what they do up there and if she was alone and scared. He said he was sad for her family because of all the presents they had for her to open today. Now they won’t be able to share that joy. He said he missed her. He said it’s not fair and that she should’ve lived to be 100 years old, not seven. I was struck by the openness and range of concerns coming from this little guy in my arms.