Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Jackson

We got very bad news last night. One of Emma's classmates died in an ATV accident on Sunday. He was seven. I was not going to post about it...too, sad. I told Emma this morning. I explained how his body was too hurt, doctor's couldn't fix him, so he went to be with God in Heaven. She was sad and she cried. I told her that it was ok to be sad and miss him, but, when we think about Jackson we should be happy and remember all the things we liked about him. She told me some stories about Jackson... How he would sing into his banana at lunch, he was good at sports, how he had trouble with math facts and he tried so hard. I don't know his parents and the funeral is going to be family only. I am going to send them a note. I told Emma if she wanted to send a note the Jackson's mommy and daddy I would help her. Emma agreed and started to work right away. She asked if the note would go to Heaven. I explained that the letter would be for Jackson's parents. Then, she asked if Jackson would see it when he came back. My heart sank. The she looked at me and said, "Is he ever going to come down?" She didn't understand. We have spent most of the morning talking about it. Question after question...about the accident, about Heaven, about his family, about him, did it hurt him to die. I answered as honestly as I could. I think she gets it. Better now, anyway. I am not sure now, should I have told her? I just didn't want her to hear it from another kid and be confused.

19 comments:

Meg said...

I think honest (gentle) responses, like what you gave her, are best. Kids are so smart...and it's so much better to hear news like that from her most trusted source.

What a tragedy. I can't imagine how little people begin to try to understand, when it's so hard for us big people, too. My extended sympathies to you and the family of your daughter's classmate.

lisagh said...

Even if she doesn't fully understand, it is so great that you are honest with her. As long as you keep an open dialogue, she will always feel free to talk to you about it and I think bit by bit she will understand. And will she ever appreciate the wonderful mother you are to her!

My heart goes out to the family, such a tragic loss and my admiration goes to you for being such a strong parent.

Libby said...

I don't have a daughter, but when I do, I hope I can handle this sort of situation with as much grace and honesty as you did. My sympathies to you, to Emma, and of course to Jackson's family.

Kerry said...

I can't imagine trying to explain this type of loss to a child much less an adult. My running partner told me this morning the husband of a close friend of hers passed while on the treadmill yesterday morning. Unexpected deaths are also sometimes unexplanable. SO sorry...

Sarah M said...

My heart goes out to his family. How terribly sad. I think you handled the situation as well as one can. I only hope that one day I can be that good of a mom.

amanda said...

I am a hospital chaplain on several pediatric units and i can assure you that you did the right thing. So often, adults try to gloss over death to make it seem less scary or permanent, but what they actually do is make it more so because then they're children really don't understand the truth and don't know what to trust. Although it is difficult to see your daughter so sad right now, she will process it better because you told her the truth.

tulipmom said...

It sounds like you did the very best thing you could in such a difficult situation. By telling her the truth you are teaching her it's ok to talk about this kind of thing. Emma's lucky to have you for a mom. My heart goes out to Jackson's family.

In the Trenches of Mommyhood said...

So heartbreaking to hear a story like that.

sisters with style said...

It sounds like you handled it beautifully. YOu are right, you don't want her to hear about it from someone else. You were the perfect person to tell her. So sad to hear about this--I hope you guys are doing better.

sas said...

That is so sad... it hurts my heart. My prayers are with their family!

CJ said...

You were in the right by telling her. You would never want someone else to tell her about it. Especially another kid whose blunt words most likely would not help her understand it. Because of how you handled it, you were there to support and comfort her. That is what any great momma would do.

I am terribly sorry for the tragedy and my sympathies reach out to all of you!

Kimba Rimba said...

My prayers are with your family and her classmates.

Buford Betty said...

I think it's so great that you were honest with her. How very sad and what a terrible loss! I think you handled it perfectly. :-)

homedaisy said...

it was so hard to tell my children about their cousin, but they find a lot of comfort knowing he is in heaven. you really did the right thing. and i know the family will appreciate your note so much.

SnappyCasualGifts said...

it sounds to me that you answered her questions in a kind and honest way. You are right that it be better she hear it from you than from others.

workinthatpreppy(ADN) said...

I am so sorry this has happened. I can not even imagine.

Head Hen said...

I just caught up, and I'm so very sorry for this family and will pray for them.

I admire how you told Emma, and bet you didn't think this was something either of you would have to figure out at this point.

Breathe. Be thankful.

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