With my morning coffee at hand, I yelled "hurry up, come eat! We need to get ready to go!" to my son yesterday morning. Another swim meet. The day before, we had been at the pool about 7 or 8 hours. We were heading back for a weary day two.
While waiting I turned on Facebook, that thing we all do with a few unfilled moments. We have to check in and see what our friends had for dinner, what exciting thing they did the night before, what they've done with their hair today as shown in their latest selfie. There was a post from a high school friend. The day before, his 5 year old son had suddenly and unexpectedly passed away. Stopped breathing. I looked for signs of a terrible hacking scheme. I told my husband, also his friend, hoping he would say, "no, it's not true - there was a virus that plays cruel jokes on Facebook pages." But instead he looked at me as if I was the one making a cruel joke. He has helped my daughter with school projects, and I told her, too, and she looked at me in confusion because his son was a little kid and how does a little kid die? I checked his page and it was filling with condolences and, then, a memorial fund announcement, because who sets aside money to bury their child? This was not a joke. It was a terrible, painful true thing.
How do these things happen? Why do these things happen to the littlest souls?
I packed my sons swim bag, grabbed his snacks and a cup of coffee. I sat at the pool on a hard metal bench for almost ten hours and watched him swim for a total of a little less than 6 minutes. I didn't complain. I was patient. I smiled to see him moving through the water. There was no place I'd rather have been.
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