Photo Courtesy of Scott Kirk Photography

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

What Would He Be Like Today?

     I spent today with a sweet, kind 24 year old young man. Like my Andrew, he was also born in February of 1994 at St. Mary's Medical Center. His parents and Bill and I were in the same childbirth class. Traveling to our workshop, we talked about school and kids and basketball. He is currently coaching our middle school boys and we reminisced about his high school career. As a senior he played the DHS Bulldogs for their senior night and he remembered one of the players wearing his cousin's jersey number in his memory. He marveled at how well this young man played--"His cousin was sure with him that night."
    His memory of that night brought my own memories of that night rushing back to me. Memories of sadness at missing Andrew. Memories of pride as his teammates would meet their goal of playing in the state basketball tournament. Memories of young boys growing into young men. As I spent the day with these memories as my companion, I kept asking myself, "What would he be like today?"
     I have asked myself that question many times during the past seven years. However, having this young man with me invited that question to nag me all day. How much taller would he have grown? What would he be doing to make a living? Would he have joined the military? Would he be living in this area or far away? How would he have his hair cut? Would he have long hair or be like his brothers with their shaved heads? I have so many questions. What? How? Where? And of course, the constant...why?
    For my sisters in grief, they understand that the upcoming holidays are never easy. There is always one member of our family missing. Today that overwhelming missing of my son came a couple weeks early. I am really glad we have a long weekend so I can spend some quiet time thinking and gathering the strength I need to survive the next few months. As I begin to celebrate happy times with family and friends, my questions will be put back into their place. However, whenever I see young men of a certain age, I remember a smiling sixteen year old and wonder-- what would he be like today?

~Andrew's Mom

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