I have not been able to write today ... my mind has been somewhere else ... and it's like a roadblock and probably will be there until I get it out. A cloud of sadness hangs over me ... it has colored my day and mood ... and it all has to do with shocking news that was passed on in a phone call from my mom.
One of the children living in the house next door when I was growing up had passed away. The shocking news was that it was at her own hand.
Flashback:When I was 11 years old, we moved next door to a family that had three boys (my family had three girls so that made for some jokes). One of the boys was my age; one was older, one younger.
A few years after we moved there, the family adopted the most precious little baby girl with dark brown hair and brown eyes ... and she captured my heart immediately. For someone who loved children and always gravitated to them, this new baby was right there next door and I was allowed to see her anytime I wanted. I was her babysitter ... and her mother laughed one time when I was grown remembering how I used to go to their door and pretty much say, "Can she come out to play?" That was not exactly how it went ... but it said how much that little girl meant to me.
When I married, that adorable six-year-old was my flower girl. Photos show her standing with the other attendants with her little velvet dress and flower basket. I moved away to my own house and went on with my life. She did, too, growing into an attractive young lady whom I would see occasionally when I visited my parents. When my folks moved to another neighborhood, I didn't see her for a while ...
... until she was 23. We saw each other under sad circumstances when her older brother, the one who was my age, was killed in an automobile accident. He and I were both 39 at the time and he was the first childhood friend to die who had been that close to me. At the funeral, there she was, still adorably cute as a young lady, mourning the loss of her brother. I hugged her.
Even though I saw her mother occasionally in the following years, I was living out of state and I never saw her again. Our mothers have stayed in touch over the years.
Last night's phone call rocked my world and opened my mind to a myriad of questions ... why? What would make a young, healthy 41-year-old, at the peak of her life, take that life? How do you make that decision and not turn back? Or maybe she tried to turn back ... but it was too late?
The questions continue today even as the memories of that little brown-eyed child flood my mind. Family friends know the details ... but that only causes more questions.