I just found out today that one of my former students passed away a few days ago. I am not surprised by this news because he had a slew of health problems. However, it doesn’t make the news any easier to hear.


It’s odd the things we remember when death comes calling.

He had to write a paper in tenth grade on Dorothy Parker. He loved football and the Eagles. I remember he went on a lot of trips with the school and went to some cool places he may not have had an opportunity to go to if he didn’t go to that school. Although I can’t remember a specific moment, I am sure he laughed many times in my class. I know he loved doing free writes and connections. I can remember him in class passing around the bear (who had like one eye and his leg was hanging on by a thread). He used to dance the robot and someone paid him a dollar to do the robot in class in front of me. I also think he danced in one of the kids’ projects. I think it was the one for The Crucible.


Again, I am not surprised that he is gone; I am just perplexed.


Why do people die when they do? I don’t have the definitive answer on that question. In my life experience, people die because their purpose in this life is done. We might not think that their purpose is complete, but it isn’t up to us to decide. My mother always told me that things happen for a reason and I agree. I also think when a life passes on, there is a lesson for all of us to learn from that person’s life and their death.


With this child, I don’t know what lesson his death is to teach me. Maybe it is that I need to reach out more to my family. Let them know that I love them. Also, maybe I need to let them know that no matter how many months have passed in which we haven’t spoken, my love for them has never wavered. I am still here for them and so is my love.


I understand the lesson his life has taught me.


Keep smiling and laughing no matter how much it hurts on the inside. Never let an illness stop you from doing the things you love. Take all the opportunities given to you and live them to the fullest. Don’t feel bad for someone because of what they have lived through. No one in this world should be pitied.


I am thankful that I got to know this child.


I know the usual he is in a better place and no more suffering and all of that stuff.


But I still can’t keep the tears from falling down.