Coping with a family tragedy is never easy, especially around Christmas (I have experienced this myself), but I feel I have to share an unexpected moment and strange ‘gift’ that I was given two weeks ago, without hopefully, intruding on a very private moment of grief.
Tuesday 3 December 2013:
I turn down the same road near our house as per usual. Emily’s in her car seat in the back, as per usual. The only unusual thing is the time. At 4:30, we are 30 minutes earlier than normal.
I absentmindedly glance at the house on the corner of Fourth Avenue where I never seem to see anyone outside.
For the first time in about eight years I see two little boys. And they stare back silently as we go by.
Wednesday 4 December and we’re driving past the same house. Only this time we see scores of people in the street. And police tape. I see scorch marks all around the house. I fear the worst. My husband says it’s probably nothing, they are most likely “just investigating the fire”.
But it wasn’t nothing.
The two little boys I’d seen were six and four. The four year old died in that fire. Somehow I was meant to drive past and see him and his brother the day before IT happened. Solemnly staring at the car.
Rest in peace, little angel …
Every day spent alive never ceases to bring home how fleeting it all is. So hug your disobedient child. Be kind to that irritating parent. Call that pain-in-the-arse sibling and appreciate that moody spouse. You never know what tomorrow will bring.