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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

More Questions Than Answers

Yesterday I stayed pretty busy. I have a lot to accomplish this week so I was having been trying to prioritize and get things done is a somewhat orderly fashion. I was buzzing here and there, making my plans and setting a schedule when out of the blue, a gut-punch reached out from my Facebook wall and literally shattered my day.

I was staring at a post announcing the death of a man I knew, admired and considered a friend. I was stunned, shocked and saddened. 
Mr. L was a life line to us in a time when we needed it. After a very tumultuous 3rd grade year we had decided to switch our son to a different school. We visited some highly recommended public schools and were told they'd love to have our son, but it could be a month after the start of school before they knew if they would have room for him. ?!?!?! A co-worker told my husband about a small private school so my husband went by one day on his lunch break and he met Mr L., the principal, and by the time he walked back out the front of the school that day, he knew that was where our little guy would go. the minute I walked into the school I felt at home. Within a month of school starting I was volunteering in the library and helping out at other events. I became THE librarian when the other lady couldn't do it anymore.

I was initially intimidated my Mr L. He was one of those people that came across as distant and cool towards others. In the course of being around the school all the time, I got to know him better and began to see that he was decent, easy to talk to and had a funny, dry wit sense of humor. I was no longer intimidated. He was my friend.

At the end of our second year there, a lot of different things happened. Not good things. There were a couple of power hungry school board members that lied and schemed to secure their positions and before it was over Mr. L announced his retirement, another very awesome teacher announced his retirement because he just could stand to see the school he loved being torn apart, several other very good, caring teachers were fired, and a new lady with no prior experience was brought in as principal. They then lied to her about me and led her to believe I was not coming back to be librarian, even as all my stuff was still in the library. Just days before school was to start instead of welcoming the kids back, I was cleaning out all my stuff. I later found out they had fired or treated many other people very badly as well. It was a sad end to what had started out as such a lifesaver for us. 
I ran into Mr L at the store awhile back.. it had been a little more than a year since all the turmoil we all experienced. We talked for quite awhile. He seemed like he was doing well. Like me, he expressed sadness over the good that was lost to the devious and self-centered actions of a few. 
Seeing that post didn't make sense. I couldn't understand. I had known him for a few years and knew him to be a fit man so I could not imagine what took him so suddenly. I asked my friend that had shared the status..

Her response made me burst into tears. My friend took his own life. Just reading that sentence makes the tears stream down my face all over again. I can not understand. He had more to offer. He had a family. He had more to do... to see..to experience... he had everything. 

I am at a loss. I'm sure there are some on-the-surface reasons, but my deeper questions will never be answered. Only he had those. He took them all with him. I will miss him, even though our daily live didn't intersect as they initially did, he was still my friend. It's selfish, but I can't help but mourn that the chances to run into Mr L. at the store are all gone. I'll never round a corner again and smile at seeing his face and get to give him a hug. 

I know I'll never fully understand this. I know I'll probably never get answers to my questions. I don't even know what I hope for in all of this... I do know my thoughts are in a jumble, my emotions are raw. I do know there are more tears to come. I do know there is a another hole in my heart for another friend gone too soon

RIP Mr. L.

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