"and i know you're shining down on me from heaven. like so many friends we've lost along the way."
last week a series of tornadoes tore apart the county that i live in.
i was one of the fortunate people to be kept safe, my life, my family, my home in one piece, but brittany may wasn't.
i didn't know brittany may, i never did. but she was killed when a tornado knocked over a tree and fell on her home.
i stumbled across her myspace this morning, full of grief-stricken comments enough to send shivers up my spine.
it really makes you think. they say life is short, but you never really know how short until it's taken away from you -- or from someone close.
she was only 17.
she haden't even begun her life yet. so many things await you at 17....
and everyone talks about her. how great of a person she was, how smart and funny and pretty and nice she was, how much they miss her.
i never knew her. no one my age that i know has ever died.
now, my school's seen it's fair share of deaths. in 2007 it was brittany may. in 2006 it was casey sanders. in 2005 it was heather dawn crawford.
it just seems there's one every year. one young life tragically cut short, tearing apart many others, making domino effects, leaving imprints on the memories of everyone around them.
and i can't help it but put a tighter grip on everyone in my life. i can't help it to want to hold them tight and never let them go, because no matter how great and safe some might say life is, you don't know if your friends are going to be here tomorrow.
you don't know if you're going to be here tomorrow.
so i guess all we can do is live.
i wonder if she has any regrets, i wonder if she's looking down at us from heaven, wishing that she'd done something differently. told someone she loved them, done what he parents asked, turned in that history report on time, apologized to that person.
its sad to think that these kinds of things happen. that people die with so much unfinished business, with so many words and actions left unsaid, leaving so many lives undone.
the plaque in front of my school with the name of our "fallen eagles" is filling up quickly and it makes me want to vomit. everyone's leaving.
it makes me want to chain them all together, tell everyone it will be ok, put a smile on their faces and make sure they know that they can't go anywhere.
that they can't leave me. that it's not ok for them to go yet. that they still have whole lives to live.
maybe god has his reasons, and maybe he knows what he's doing.
but i know i can only keep brittany may in my prayers, and her family and friends in my prayers and in my thoughts. and maybe it was her death that served as a wide rude awakening to everyone that you just need to live.
you can't wake up each day living with regrets. you have to do what you want, when you want it. tell people you love them, never go to bed angry, never leave words unsaid, things undone, business unfinished.
you never know. live each day like it's your last, because it might as well be.
"only the good die young"