Monday, February 18, 2008
A Broken Heart
A few weeks before Thanksgiving our children's beloved piano teacher, Ms. Debi, lost her oldest son in a motorcycle accident. He was 34. She and her husband were understandably devastated.

They had two sons. Now only one.

Ms. Debi had suffered from an irregular heart beat her whole life. She took medicine to correct this and had never really had any problems. After the death of there oldest child this all changed.

She not only had to deal with her grief but with a heart that was litterally breaking. She was hospitalized with an extremely erratic heart beat (there were some other complications) and was in very serious condition.

We were all so worried about Ms. Debi. She is a wonderful Christian lady who has been a part of our lives for many years. Her best friend called me one evening a few weeks after the accident to let us know that Debi did not think she could go back to teaching. Her health issues along with her grief were making it unimaginable for her to go on as if nothing had happened.

Over the next few weeks our family, as well as many others, prayed for Debi and her husband. She did improve and was released from the hospital a few weeks later.

I kept sending her cards and emails to check in on her. Not wanting to intrude upon them but at the same time wanting them to know they were in our thoughts and prayers.

Ms. Debi is a wonderfully gifted teacher. The thought of her not teaching just broke my heart. Her enjoyment of the children she taught was evident and I so hoped she would change her mind once she felt better.

A few weeks after Christmas I received a note from her letting me know she was thinking of taking on just a few students. Would we be interested?

Samantha started back a few weeks ago. We ask Ms. Debi how she is feeling and give her lots of hugs. I'm never sure if I should bring up her son. I don't want to remind her of her great loss though as a mother I can imagine it is never to far from the surface.

Today she spent an entire hour with Samantha so she could help her with some difficult songs she was trying to master. Samantha loved the extra attention and I was so thankful to Debi for giving it to her.

As we were leaving Debi was asking me about our life and what was going on. I told her that this was our busy time of year what with the boys baseball schedules. We seemed to just run from game to game.

Then, I saw it.

The far away look, a memory being retrieved.

He boys had played baseball. She was also a crazy busy mom at one time.

I felt so awful for saying anything. Felt as if I had been so incensitive.

She looked at me and smiled. She had obviously noticed my face when I realized what I had said.

We hugged and she told me to hold on tight to my little ones.

Life can change in an instant.

A shudder ran through my body at the thought of losing one of my children.

I pray I will never have to endure the grief of losing a child. However, I am thankful to have a God in my life who will carry me through no matter what.

Just like he has done for Ms. Debi.


  posted at 5:43 PM  

At 8:27 PM, Blogger Kelli said...


At 9:24 PM, Blogger Crissybug said...

I hope to never know that feeling. My Aunt lost her 3 year old to a drowning a few years ago. It was so hard to watch her, and her family go through the pain. I hope that Debi will be able to get past this, and know that her son is being taken care of.

At 3:31 AM, Blogger Laurel Wreath said...

A feeling I can not comprehend. Amen.

At 4:06 AM, Blogger Heidi @ GGIP said...

Oh that is so sad. But it was an innocent comment on your part and I'm sure she understands that even though it brings her grief.

At 7:00 AM, Blogger missy said...

How very sad. Her comment to you brought tears to my eyes. I'm off to hug my kid now.

At 8:00 AM, Blogger LISA said...

My mom was never the same after my older sister died.(cancer at 20)Changed the whole family.I'm glad Ms.Debi has the Lord in her life.

At 11:06 AM, Blogger Lauren@Baseballs&Bows said...

How sad. I can't even imagine. I know she is thankful to have people like you around her who care.

I don't know if this applies to everyone, but I once heard Elizabeth Edwards say that she appreciated it when people spoke her sons name (he died in a car accident). It made her feel that they remembered him, and that his life had mattered.

I don't know that this would apply to everyone who has lost a child, and I am certainly no expert, but I always remember her saying that.

I will pray for Debi!

At 11:45 AM, Blogger Cakes said...

praying for her family...and mine

At 12:23 PM, Blogger Megan@SortaCrunchy said...

definitely heartbreaking. thanks for sharing her gentle encouragement with us.

At 5:46 AM, Blogger Kimmie said...

Hi Julie;
May God draw her close, because He is the one who is in the healing business. May His touch bring her comfort, may His whispers bring her joy in unexpected ways.

Praying that God gives you ideas of special ways in which you can continue to bless her over this next year.

mama to 6
one homemade and 5 adopted

At 7:16 AM, Blogger Michelle said...

That really makes me sad. Bless you for you loving concern.

At 12:42 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

Oh, Julie, I'm so sorry for her. I am close to a dear lady who lost her 40-something-year-old son last year unexpectedly and she only has 2 sons, too.

She put on the bravest face, but I can't imagine the grief; we just think the world of her.

I know your family's support is so precious to your dear teacher.


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I am a spontaneous, out going, daughter of the King, who is married to a wonderful guy who is a quiet, shy, non-spontaneous, scientist who also loves the Lord. Truly a match made in heaven! We fight and argue, love and laugh, every single day. I am passionate about orphan care and love to tell our story to anyone who will listen. This blog is dedicated to that journey.

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