I guess I always knew deep down where I’ve never allowed anyone to see, I was destined to lose my only son.
You see? Driving one night on Labor Day, 1986, I lost my best friend in a car accident where I was behind the wheel. Details don’t matter much. Grand Juries, indictments for manslaughter, the loss of everyone who ever meant anything to me. Does it really matter?
Life altering tragedies and loss also drastically alter the very foundation of our souls. It left me shattered and broken in ways most humans will never, ever understand.
It took decades to put my soul back together and vanquish the multitudes of demons festering inside.
Sometimes I wonder if the whole reason I went through the excruciatingly painful process of rebuilding my soul was to be entirely whole and extremely alive again, only to suffer the greatest loss of my life.
I fought demons all alone, that no mortal man should ever have to face. Learned how to be still, no matter how much life rages around me. Learned how to look in the mirror and finally be at peace with who I see.
I remember when my son was born, thinking someday I would lose him. It was a deep, instinctive feeling I was never able to shake or share with even those most intimate. I held it so close, desperately thinking that if it ever came to light, maybe it would happen.
We don’t have the power to alter fate like that though and if anyone should know this, it’s me.
My son grew up and became a man. After September 11th, all he wanted to do was serve his country and all I knew is it would be the end of him. He spent 5 years in the Navy and after a lengthy extended tour, coming home to marital problems, he ended his life.
How much of my brokenness cost me the loss of my only son? How much more a price I have to pay?