There are so many thoughts swirling in my mind.
It’s 11 pm on a Wednesday night and I just ended a call with one of my best friends. A close friend of hers was murdered either yesterday or this morning. The entire family was murdered, actually. It was incredibly shocking to hear that something like this could happen in a small town in Utah, but it did.
As she told me about the mother of the family (the family member she was closest to) I began to cry, too. She sounded amazing; selfless, young, strong… She sounded like the type of woman that you wanted to look up to. I imagine you’d admire her laugh and take note of her fashion sense. You would probably go up to her first at social events and absorb her words like you were hearing the most important words you’d ever hear. I imagine she was a beautiful daughter of God.
Her children died along with her, as well as her mother and her husband. My friend told me how she had just seen this family around Christmas and promised to text her. “It really makes you appreciate those around you before they’re gone”, she said.
10 days. In 10 days, you could never see someone you love again. It’s a frightening thought.
It made me think of other frightening thoughts, like resolving familial conflicts and coming clean about my mistakes. It scared me into living life more fully, because, we really don’t know when we’ll be gone or when our loved ones will be gone. It inspired me to write in this blog, which I’ve been procrastinating because, “I always have tomorrow.”
This conversation was both heartbreaking and sobering. I woke up a little bit inside. I woke up to reality but also to hope. I have hope for her family, whom I believe are in heaven resting from all woes and all care. They’re in a better place, and for this, I’m grateful. But I also woke up to reality. And reality is what I’ve been hiding from for a long time.
Mourning with Those that Mourn.
I tend to avoid connection because it feels heavy. A friend’s breakup feels heavy, trauma feels heavy… even a comforting hand feels heavy. I’ve avoided connection for multiple reasons- some justified, some not- but no reason was worthy of the isolation I put myself and others through.
Do you know what I realized while listening to my friend on the phone? I was getting a migraine because this hurt me, too. Not as much, but it hurt. And I cried, and I get migraines when I cry. A part of me wanted the pain to be over, to feel the relief a good night’s rest will prescribe. But then I realized:
If that means sharing a migraine with my friend who’s mourning, I will share that migraine. If that means having one more sleepless night because my friend is having a sleepless night, I will share it. It’s been proven to me time and time again that life simply cannot be survived without connection, compassion, or a shared burden.
This phone call was sobering because I realized what I really should have been doing this whole time. I should have been calling my friends who live in all different parts of the world even if the time zone difference is a pain in the neck. I should have been hosting more movie nights even if no one comes. I should have been inviting old friends to karaoke or Just Dance parties or to dinner in fancy restaurants around the state. I should have been saying what I really wanted to say even if it wasn’t received well. I should have been appreciating those around me and myself before we’re all gone. I should have been mourning with those that mourn, whether it be publically or internally.
So, I decided to document some questions to ask myself that I’ll share with you:
- How will you live stepping forward?
- What will you change to see those around you- really see them?
- And how will you fulfill your God-given purpose on earth and become something that is out-of-this-world fantastic?
Let me know your answers in the comments. And please, send prayers, good vibes, and love to my friend, the family aforementioned, and their community ❤️
Until next time,