(WARNING: if you're in a happy holiday mood, you may want to skip this post until after the holidays)
I was reminded again this week just how fragile life is. It ended way too soon for a member of my family on Monday. 14 years old. It's a tragic story I won't go into here (again, email or call if you want), but it reminded me again just how fragile we all are and how slippery our grasp on life really is.
I was also reminded of something deeply profound I seem to take for granted - telling your story. Because telling your story might literally be the link that saves someones life. No matter how small or large your tragedies and experiences are, you must share them. because, in the sharing you open up your life for other people to see how you've thrived and survived it all. There is nothing in your life that cannot be used to aid the hurting of another person.
Last night I kept asking myself what I could have done to prevent this tragedy. I know in reality, there was probably little I could have done, but I do know I could have loved her more, held her more, and shared more of myself with her. There are a lot of family dynamics that come into play and a lot of complicated issues that would have to be worked through, but in the end, I could have said, it's okay. You can survive. The things that happen to you do not have to be the things that define you.
Instead we are all left with a million unanswered questions and heavy hearts. A grieving mother....hurting friends...sobering reminders of how temporary we all are.