Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Remembering 12 year old Josh – oh how our hearts hurt

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Today’s Blog Post

Remembering 12 year old Josh – oh how our hearts hurt

Last evening the telephone rang. It was my aunt Edna calling from Regina. She was speaking with my mom. It was then that mom called us into her room to listen to the horrific news that Edna was sharing.

Josh, mom’s grandnephew, had committed suicide. He was only 12 years old.

The three of us struggled to cope with this news that had just arrived. Whatever could have happened to cause this series of events to take place?

Josh is the grandson of my mom’s youngest sister, Marg. Josh’s mom is Trish, a much younger cousin of mine.

Through the power of FaceBook another one of my cousins, I assume, heard of this tragedy while he was catching up on the family. This cousin lives in Ottawa. He called his mom in Regina, who then called her sister-in-law in Peterborough, my mom.

For about an hour I struggled to make sense of what had taken place. I called aunt of mine and asked if she had heard what had happened. Being so far away from Calgary and this part of the family is more than hard at times. We can do nothing to support and help from here the way that we would like to.

Though our family is scattered almost to the four corners of the earth, we are still family. And that family is still very close.

My cousin Trish wrote these words on her Facebook page last Saturday…
“Thanks everyone for your loving support. By God's grace, we continue living through hour after hour and are trying to adjust to what it will be like to be a family of 5. We are surrounded by amazing family and friends. There are no words to describe the terrible sense of loss we are feeling. Josh was a fantastic son and we are thankful that we had the privilege of parenting him for 12 years.”

“Oh Trish… we love you so much. Though we are 2200 miles apart we hope that you will know how deeply your Great Aunt Nell Lincoln cares for you. Her heart breaks for you and Greg… and your three kids.”

“We certainly pray for God’s comfort and support through this time of great loss.”

“Trish, none of us can understand what you are going through. We would like to – but that isn’t what we should say. We just don’t know.”

“But Aunt Nell can understand a little of what is like. Her son, and my brother, passed away as a young father, leaving his wife and two kids behind. Mom told me at that time the deep pain that she felt when her son died so early. I didn’t know what to say or how to help her either.”

When our other cousin Kevin passed away as a young, just married husband, none of us knew what to say or do either.

Then with the other losses over the years our clan has not been without times of great sorrow.

For my readers outside our Kirkpatrick and Lincoln clan… I can tell you a little more of the tragedy that has taken place.

Josh told his mom that he wasn’t feeling good last Thursday morning. Trish decided to let him stay at home. She would come back from work at lunch time to check on how he was doing.

When Trish came home at lunch time she found her boy had died from a gunshot. There was a note describing some of the why.

At 12 years old Josh had experienced a difficult world and he could no longer take it. He also mentioned that the bullying was more than he could stand.

Now there should be more… but there wasn’t. Josh did not say anything to his mom and dad about his struggles. There was no conversations about the tough stuff at school or the bullying. At 12 he couldn’t cope anymore and he ended his life that fateful morning. He had tried but it was just too much.

This terrible news came on the heels of my post yesterday about family and the way we struggle with raising them.

Last evening I had to write to my daughters and tell them what happened. I am a Grandpa of six amazing grandkids that all go to school and all face similar struggles with the world that Josh faced.

When I thought of my own Grandkids, I wept for Trish and Greg, Marg and Howard and the whole family. I am still weeping inside today and will be for a long time to come.

Though I had never met young Josh, he now has an important place in my life – forever. I will try to do what I can to support my grandkids and every other kid that comes my way.

Family, so far away… Aunt Nell, Alida and myself cannot get to the Memorial Service for Josh this Wednesday afternoon coming in Calgary. But we will be there in spirit and in our prayers to support you.

Friends of mine… that are grandparents… we need to love and know our kids in everyway possible. I personally can never let one minute go by when I am with the kids to not find out how they are doing and what I can do to help them. I just can’t.

~ Murray Lincoln ~

1 comment:

Brenda said...

That is so sad Murray---give our love to your Mom.
We are praying with you.