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Posts Tagged ‘grief’

When life throws the worst it has to offer at you; it’s hard not to ask, Why God?  Why me, or my family, my friends…why must we suffer so?  Watching the news and hearing the evil that takes place, the violence, the intolerance, the hate, the cruelty…it pushes the emotional hot buttons inside of the human heart.  It is not that you wish those horrifying things to happen to another human being…but, surely anyone who has suffered deeply wants to know why they are suffering.  That is natural, don’t you think?

There must be an answer to help hurting hearts to understand, that what is happening to cause them pain, isn’t happening because they are a bad person, or for no apparent reason at all.  The mind and the soul just needs to make some kind of sense of it all.  Understanding tragedy is no easy task.  People have differing opinions on why bad things happen. If you would like to finish reading this post click here: Writewhereyouare

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      The news is full of reports of two suspects being held in an alleged extortion attempt of John Travolta.  John and his wife Kelly Preston lost their only son Jett in the Bahamas at the start of the new year.  There has been little information released about the extortion plan; however, it does appear that an ambulance driver is allegedy one of the people being held in police custody.   Reports also say that an attorney is being held for questioning as well by the police.  I am sure more information will be revealed in time.

         Extortion is usually about money; whatever the plan was…it is happening at a terrible time.   The family is still grieving the loss of their son Jett.   Some people seem to take joy in other people’s pain.  The Bahamas is a beautiful place to visit…but it is turning into a place associated with celebrities and their nightmares.  This could have a major impact on travelors or tourism if this investigation is not properly handled.  That would make me sad as it is one of the most beautiful places i have ever traveled to.

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      Another chapter to the sad story of 2 year old Caylee Anthony’s death.  Early this morning, Friday January 23, 2009, Caylee’s grandfather, George Anthony, was picked up at a Florida hotel after he disappeared and allegedly sent family members text messages saying that no longer wanted to live.  George also left a five page suicide letter apparently; I wonder if it will reveal information that could lead to the unraveling of the mystery of  Caylee’s death?  He was involuntarily was taken by police to a local hospital for evaluation. 

     All of this pressure has built up in the last year since young Caylee was reported missing and her body was, recently, discovered.  His daughter Casey was arrested for Caylee’s murder and both he and his wife has had to deal with Caylee’s death, family drama, invasive media, and his daughter’s arrest.  I am sure that the death, and his family’s initial feelings of denial of Caylee’s death, as well as the realization that she is gone has led to depression and a general overall feeling of being  filled with overwhelming stress.

       These issues are often overlooked by many when people watch the news…the truth is, that the long arm of the law has consequences for more than just the suspect in a case of murder  or criminal behavior.  There is much to deal with, for the friends and family members of the victims and the suspects who are involved.

     The emotional effects of just not being able to grieve properly for the loss of his grandchild is devastating.  First thing, no one knew for sure that Caylee was in fact dead.  She was missing and her mother Casey was telling conflicting stories.  George had to give information to the police at one time that many speculated was not all positive…that had to be a horrible experience for him.  There were search parties out looking for Caylee…this went on for months with little results.  Then there were alledged reported sightings of Caylee which turned out to be false.  In the meantime, the media was invading the Anthony’s personal space.  Conflict was a daily thing.

       George’s wife was giving interviews that alledgedly seemed to conflict with statements she made to the police and to her co-workers about a smell in Casey’s car…that smelled like a dead person.  That must have added to interpersonal problems in their family.  Their son, Casey’s brother, also was drawn into the fray with statements that he made that was reported in the media.  This is a family was that under a microscope.  Then came the confirmation recently that young Caylee’s body was found thrown away in a trash bag.

         The details of that are heartbreaking.  She was put inside of a laundry bag with a winnie the pooh blanket, with some pullups and with a knife…her little mouth was covered with duct tape that had residue from a heart shaped sticker put on the tape over her mouth; that tape was attached to her hair.  Her bones were scattered in the area where she was found.  This is a devastating thing to have to live with the knowledge that someone…maybe the child’s mother…could be capable of such depraved actions.  I am sure it was much more than most people could handle.

        The text messages that George allegedly sent to his family was an emergency cry for help from someone who is struggling to survive in a tidal wave of trauma.  I pray that he will get the help and the support that he needs to be well and whole. 

         Many people have made hurtful comments about the family members…we don’t know the facts of what actually happened.  Judging them and their actions without the full information is unwise.  Who in their situation could be faulted for handling things with imperfection…they have lost their granddaughter, their daughter is in jail for the alledged murder of their grandchild, they have had their lives turned upside down…including their home and privacy invaded…their children have been under the media spotlight…and they could possibly be charged with charges if they were, in any way, responsible for covering up evidence against their daughter.   That doesn’t even take into consideration yet…the nightmare that will be the trial that is coming soon. 

        This case has had many ups and downs.  It is still in the investigative phase and the court process has begun to build it’s case against Casey Anthony.  I truly hope that the grandparents are not involved in anything that could be considered a cover up by the authorities.  It is horrible enough to think about loosing their granddaughter and possibly their daughter to the legal system.  Let’s not forget that a child died…someone did in fact kill her, the truth needs to come out…and they will be dealing with that issue alone for the rest of their lives.  These are not issues that anyone gets over….overnight!

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        Donald Peters won, and he won big!  It was his luckiest day…and his most unlucky day as well.  On November 1st Donald bought a lottery ticket in Conneticut; and he won $10 million dollars.  Can you believe it?  He was a retired factory worker; I am sure that money could come in handy after all those years of working hard.  He bought two tickets…but, he didn’t cash them in.   Someone else did…and they did it just this past week.   It was Donald’s wife of 59 years who cashed the ticket in.

       Why her, and not him, you may ask?  Hours after buying the winning ticket he went home and  had a heart attack.  Donald died…and his family grieved; not even knowing of the winning ticket that sat unattended, in the home, while they went about mourning the loss of the man they loved.

        While some would say the man was lucky to purchase a winning $10 million dollar lottery ticket…others would say if it weren’t for bad luck….he would’ve had no luck at all.   You see, the purchase of these tickets was a tradition that he and his wife shared for 20 years.  While he won the lottery, he didn’t get to celebrate…he didn’t even know that he won the money, let alone get to spend a dime of it!

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     Every since young two year old Caylee became “missing”…her picture has impacted millions of people who found themselves caring for Caylee.  Thousands of volunteers looked for her.  News agencies kept her story in the news…every week.

     Each time that there was new information on the case, the media brought it to the public.  That picture of the beautiful young child, with the mahogony brown hair and the sweet chocolate brown eyes that look up so innocently from her preciously folded hands under her chin, is embeded in my mind’s eye for life.  

        Caylee’s spirit seems to call out to the person looking at her picture.  She was begging someone to find her with those big, beautiful eyes.  She deserved to be found; better yet…she deserved to live.  No child should have experienced what happened to young Caylee.

         This week it was confirmed that her skeleton was found less than a half of a mile away from the home that Caylee, and her mother Casey, shared with Caylee’s grandparents before she was discovered to be missing.  That is a horrible ending to the search for Caylee.

          Many believed that Caylee was deceased.  No-one wanted it to be true.  However, a meter reader found her remains in a garbage bag.   She was tossed away like she was garbarge to be dumped…that truly makes me sick.  I hope it haunts whoever is responsible for throwing away Caylee’s life.   News reports are not too informative ( i am sure that is for legal reasons  when Casey Anthony goes to trial for the alleged murder of her child).  What we do know is that the meter reader had called in to the authorities in August for them to search the area where Caylee’s remains were found on December 11, 2008.   It sounds as if an attempt was made by authorities to search the area but it may have been flooded at that time.   This past week, tests determined that the skeleton was indeed Caylee.  That skeleton was in pieces that were scattered around the area.  There was no flesh…and apparently, there was duct tape over the child’s mouth.  What kind of cruelty is that…the child was two years old for heaven’s sake!

        It is a horrible case; will the whole truth ever be known?  It is hard to tell; as Casey Anthony has told so many versions of “her” truth…that it will be hard to discern what really did happen.  It was decided that the prosecutors are not going for the death penalty, as they felt that the public would best be served by her serving life in prison; if indeed she is convicted of the murder of her 2 year old toddler.

         It is heartbreaking to know that a parent is even capable of such an evil act.  What is more heartbreaking is wondering if Caylee was aware of what was happening; and, if it is true that her mother caused her death…whether she knew who was causing her harm.    Earlier reports said that Casey Anthony had done internet searches on using Choloraform.  Whatever happened, it is a sad thing all around.  There are always plenty of adoptive homes that are ready, willing and able to care for a child such as Caylee.  Murder should never be an option; especially when it sounds as if Caylee’s parents would have gladly cared for Caylee. 

          As many grieve for Caylee…let’s remember those who were closest to her; those who loved her and cared for her.  Will there ever be enough information given to the public to understand why Caylee’s life was taken?  Probably not…however, any honest information would be welcome to those of us who have heavy hearts when we think about the death of Caylee.  It should never have happened!  Does her picture call out to anyone else out there?  She had a short life but made a big impact on alot of people.

       

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       I remember back when i was in high school, back in the 80’s, we had a class on social issues.  In that class we discussed high profile situations in our society; which underscored how desensitized our society was becoming to people in pain and misery.

       There was a case of a woman who was stabbed over and over again in New York.  She was screaming and people heard it and yet they did nothing.  Later, when the police were investigating…people stated that they heard it; but, they did not want to “get involved”. 

         I remember thinking, during that discussion, that that was crazy; an isolated incident.  Not so, as i have grown up and matured, I find that people really are becoming desensitized to other people’s pain and misery.  It is crazy but think about it…how many movies have put murder and torture out there for entertainment value…such as those horror flicks or slasher movies?  It is not only sad…but, it is immoral.   Those things desensitize our fellow human beings to the value of life.

         How many television shows continue to shoot, rape, rob, torture and victimize others and draw in millions of viewers each and every day?  How do we expect people to have compassion towards one another?  We need to reconnect to those around us; this is something that affects us all.  Children are growing up today who have great difficulty seeing past their own wants and needs.  Adults who are willing to commit violence to get what they want…no matter who they hurt or kill.  Parents who kill children, children who kill parents, siblings, neighbors or friends.  It is as if they do not know how to “feel” appropriately towards anyone outside of themselves.

        Today, i am brought to a deeper sadness than I have felt in a long time regarding our nation and the lack of compassion that our citizens show towards one another. 

         A young man in Florida committed suicide online while others watched and egged him on.  He posted a suicide note…he live-streamed his suicide online; while people WATCHED and did nothing to HELP him.  Not only that, they allegedly ridiculed him and said things like…that isn’t enough medication to kill you!  What amazes me, is that this went on for hours and hours before someone had the good sense to contact the authorities to try to get help for him.   It was too late; he was already dead!

         There are reports that this person may have attempted to kill himself in the past.  So what; so what if it was a false alarm…who and what does it hurt to contact the authorities and have it checked out?  If that person was faking it…he would have been sent somewhere for a psychological exam to find out why he would do such a thing.  Maybe, just maybe he would still be alive today if someone had made an attempt to help him; when he FIRST stated his intention to kill himself.   

         Unfortunately, the young man was not faking the suicide attempt…he was actually crying out for help.  There were many people who had an opportunity to get involved, save a life, make a difference…and yet…they did not.  How can a human being watch another person suffer in front of their very eyes and pile more emotional damage upon that person?  Even if they thought it was a prank, even if they thought the person was not serious, even if they thought it was a waste of time…they failed to react with compassion.  How much more of an effort would it have taken to pick up the phone…or contact the online service that provided the streaming video and asked for someone to follow up on the person’s well-being?  Someone finally did contact help…but…it was much too late for saving his life; but, at least they made an attempt.

           I sure would not want my mind filled with the image of that young man lying on his bed with his back to the camera; filled with despair and depression…curled up in defeat…knowing that he died as I watched and took no action to save his life.  Every life has value and should be preserved.  My heart aches for him, for his family and for his friends…and yes, even for those who watched him die.  They will have to live with the knowledge of what they saw, what they said and did; and, did not do to help a fellow human being in distress.

           Many people in our society are affected by mental illness, or by depression.  It is not a crime…however, it is a crime to fail to get someone help when they need it.  I don’t know if any of those who participated in this suicide by watching it will be held legally responsible or not…but, I do think that they had a moral obligation to get involved in a way that would have attempted to provide some emergency help for this individual.  Depression is a serious matter and so is a suicide attempt.   Please help to educate others on suicide prevention!  https://writeasrain.wordpress.com/2008/08/23/suicide-prevention/ or on what happens to a suicide victim’s loved ones after the suicide:  http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory?id=6311509

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         I am looking forward to tomorrow on Good Morning America.  Robin Roberts is going to interview the Steven Curtis Chapman family about the loss of their young 5 year old daughter, Maria, in a tragic car accident involving their teenaged son.  Their daughter was adopted from China.  With the Olympics in China in the media, it is a good time to underscore the connections of the human spirit and relationships formed around the world.

         I fully expect there to be anguish…how can you go through something so traumatic as loosing your daughter, at the accidental hands of your teenaged son, and not have anguish?  Then to have the eyes of the world on you as you grieve; it has had to be extremely stressful.  Not to mention the threat of legal proceedings against your teenaged son, hanging over you while you are going through your loss.  There are so many messages that could be presented to the world through this experience, love, loss, safety, spirituality, depression and the list goes on.  God says, he will make good come from all things.   

          This experience would be horrendous for anyone…let alone a Christian family, just because you have the added responsibilities of not wanting to let God down, or fail to encourage others; however, human beings are just that…human…we often fail, even with the best of intentions.  The Chapman family is a family who has brought hope and healing, through music ministry for years; not to mention, opening doors to financial guidance for adoptive parents, creating another avenue for God miracles to impact lives.  Their struggle to find peace in this very difficult time continues…there are things that grief to the surface…questions that demand answers for.  It is as their daughter Emily said… Grief is a very windy road.  It is a struggle to meet all of their children’s emotional needs as they navigate their own ups and downs; but, at least their family is trying to heal together.

          Christians are not immune to tragic circumstances…in fact, i believe that they are given to everyone.  No one is left out of doses of misery, despair, sickness, loss, financial stress etc.  But the Christian bears an extra burden during those times as they are living their lives, as a testimony before others, about God’s grace and mercy.  How to explain the unexplainable?  The old question, why does God let bad things happen?  Oh, King Solomon i am sure, would have an answer to that as he prayed for wisdom and was granted it by God…but truly, only God knows the whys of things.  All we can do is struggle to hang on to our faith and try to grow it through the struggles of life.

        I know that Robin Roberts is a Christian…she has had her own struggles, this past year.  I am most interested in this interview, as i believe that God will impart compassion, grace and understanding in it, to others who are going through their own difficulties.  I pray that hearts will be touched and moved.  Watch tomorrow on good morning america for this moment of heartfelt grief and love and hope.  It will be worth your time!

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