Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Death, Be Gone With You

I didn't sleep last night, just like most of the people in my immediate part of the world, I'm sure. I wrote in my head, tossed and turned, dreamed of at least 3 different car accidents, and stared at My Babe sleeping soundly beside me (and thank you, dear God, for that.) I need not be reminded of the brief time we have on this earth with our loved ones. I think about that every time I kiss My Babe as he walks out the door to one of the riskiest jobs around. I do not rest until he walks back in the door again. I know that each day I have with my family, my team, my friends might be my last. And somehow, I forget that all at the same time. I forget to live in the moment, to choose kindness, to love unconditionally, to give the benefit of the doubt, and to give freely to others.

Nothing brings it home more than death.

Three of our teachers were killed in a car accident yesterday.

Susan, our speech therapist, loved our team and always wanted to teach with us. According to her, we were her favorite team. Our neighbor until just recently, she and her husband had just moved to their dream home. She couldn't wait for us to come over for a pool party. She worked closely with our kindergarten children and did an amazing job with them.

Pat, our counselor, was probably the most well dressed counselor in the world. Always organized, always proper, and always ready to party. Pat dancing at Nat's wedding was quite a sight to behold. I think we all nearly peed in our pants from laughter that night. Pat and I always joked at how we couldn't look at each other during meetings because, inevitably, one of us would make a face and set the other one off laughing at an inappropriate time.

Debbie, a first grade teacher, taught kindergarten with us for a couple of years. Never have I met a woman more capable than Debbie of being a successful stand-up comedian. Teaching with Debbie kept us hysterical on most days. Like Pat, she was always well dressed, never repeating an outfit within a year's time span. Recess in a full mink coat posed quite a few laughs, as well as her stories of porridge (beef stew to her) and using striped toothpaste and Bisquick to fill in holes in apartment ceilings and walls (in Texas...in the summer...you get the picture).

Susan, Pat, and Debbie...you are loved and will be missed.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for writing about each of their unique personalities. I didn't know them, but had just heard about them as school staff members. You filled in a little more about what they were like as individuals, and they all sound like they were delightful.

Yes, they will be remembered, I'm sure.

Lori said...

What a horrible tragedy. I am so sorry for the loss of these beautiful lives. Thank you for sharing a piece of them with us.

niobe said...

This is so terribly sad. My thoughts and prayers are with their families.

cb said...

Well said about all three of them, Melissa! I feel blessed to have known each one of them - to have been given the opportunity to respect them as professionals, to be honored to call them colleagues, and to have loved them as friends.

Kim said...

I am so so sorry for your loss. I am praying for you and the families of your friends.