When Really Sad Things Happen

This week has been so incredibly confusing and I am literally exhausted. Emotionally spent.  Every day we are tested with life’s ups and downs and we deal with things as they hit us.

On a “normal” day, kids wake up late, the cereal gets knocked on its side spilling its contents  all over the kitchen floor, an ice pop melted brings piles of ants parading through your home. You miss a bus, your hosiery gets snagged on a zipper, you get a paper cut, you have a migraine. You catch a glimpse of someone flying a kite, a child runs back to give you that one last hug, the flowers in your garden are blooming. You reach the bottom of the laundry basket, your boss gives you a compliment, your kids make dinner, you lost a few pounds.

When something negative and unexpected happens though, you kind of get stuck in this OMG moment. It throws you and can affect the rest of your day in a way that is confusing and upsetting and even if you have other reasons to smile, the day is slightly tainted.

A couple of days ago this world lost a soul that never knew the power of evil. She was well cared for, loved from beginning to end, and the amount of lives she touched just by being born reached international proportions. Her life was not an easy one, filled with daily challenges and we all prayed that each day would bring her comfort and better health.

So I sat shocked as I read the email. I was unprepared for the final blow. How was it possible? I couldn’t wrap my head around it. What happened? Why did G-d do this? We all prayed daily for this to have a better outcome. We all waited for the miracle. I was so sure it would be okay. There was this lingering confusion as the day progressed. One one hand my friend lost her 2-year-old, but I had to prepare for another friend’s wedding, at the same time my father was en route for a medical procedure. All 3 events, the funeral, the procedure, the wedding all happening at the same time of day threw me into emotional overload. My happiness was tainted yet I never cried. Until today.  Today, nothing in particular happened. There were no parties, there were no surgeries, the dust sort of settled and I had time to process it all.

My heart is so heavy and I am terribly saddened that my friend’s baby has left this world.  I had the privilege when I was visiting the states to visit her in the ICU, to hold her hand, to sing to her. It came as no surprise that my friend offered to drive me all the way home.  I could have taken a train I told her, just drop me off at a station…but she would not have it. Ever since I have known her, she ha shad a way of giving of herself that is all about helping others. She organizes and plans and succeeds in producing amazing results. Be it money for the needy, activities for children, a night of special treatment for busy moms, all while raising her own children, all while caring for this special needs baby, and supporting her husband’s academic achievements. I am positive that no one’s life is ever completely stress free – though some live an easier life than others.  She has always been an example to me on how to spend one’s time wisely and to the fullest…but this, this is heart-wrenching. There never seems to be enough words to express sorrow to another mother suffering the loss of her baby, never having gone through the same situation. I cry for the opportunities this child never had. I cry for the parents who, even with having 2 other children who are healthy, will never see this beautiful baby thrive.

I have these picture in my mind that I cannot stop thinking about. Pictures they posted on Facebook so we, who live far away, could follow their lives, that are sort of like a slide show that keeps playing over and over again. One of daddy holding her and she was smiling. One of big brother with both baby sisters at his sides. The one of her with her birthday cake and flowered headband. There is a part of me that is relieved for the parents. There will be no more nights of worrying if she’ll stop breathing or running for emergency surgeries. They can focus 100% on healthy children that are thriving and continuing to grow steadily. While they have a horrible week of mourning ahead of them, knowing they have touched the lives of so many people there will be no shortage of visitors during this time, offering them comfort.

However, I am not there. I can not offer any hugs or hold anyone’s hand. I can sit here and cry. I can not begin to imagine how it feels to lose the life of a child. Just the thought is so overpowering, I break down and cry. I know G-d is compassionate and that this child suffers no more. I pray that of all the people going to pay their respects there is some comfort for the grieving family.  I pray that they are in a place of acceptance and are comforted by the fact they no one needs to suffer this unfairness any longer. It is evident based on the time and effort these parents took to care and love this child, that they did everything in their power to protect and get the best medical experts to monitor her life. We were updated and given the opportunity to share in their lives. We were blessed to be a part of her life. I had many friends praying for this soul and to have to share the news to them, the thought was daunting – how do I tell them? So many responded with words of shock, of sadness, of apology and never even met my friends and their baby.  The power to touch so many lives is amazing.

To know that I had this small impact and the message reached so many people to help in any way they could give me some small comfort. I will share these thoughts with the mourning parents and I look forward to sharing happier messages in the future.



  1. So sorry for your loss, and especially for your friends. I know it’s more difficult for you because you can’t be there with them, but your heart is there; and that’s what counts.

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