Day 1: Lost
That was the only thing going through my head. The silence in the room was insane! I looked around the classroom again, only to find that nothing had changed. Everyone was still staring straight ahead with this blank look on their faces. Only one guy beside me was moving; shaking his head in disbelief.
I couldn't really believe it either. How could he be dead?
One girl stared at her desk with glassy, unseeing gray eyes. I thought I saw a tear, but I couldn't be sure. Maybe she was in shock. Everyone seemed to be. All of them looked completly lost. As if not just a person had died, but they lost their ability to move as well.
Me? I felt numb. Like when the dentist deadens your teeth before a surgery, only it was in my whole body. Again, I wished that someone would talk. But as much as I wanted the silence to end, I didn't have the courage to break it. Some kind of gut feeling told me to keep my mouth shut.
It felt like the air was filled with tiny sharp things and they would fall down on top of us if anyone so much as breathed too loudly.
My teacher stood up and went to the front of the room. "Well," he began, and then launched into a speech about how our teacher who had been battling for his life was in Heaven now. But I couldn't listen. I still couldn't feel right.
"He's not hurting anymore..." One girl whipered, her voice breaking. I looked up and saw that she wasn't crying either, just looking straight ahead. They guy beside me rubbed his hoody sleeve across his eye.
"Yea," I agreed, but when I tried to smile I realized that I couldn't breath. Something was crushing the air out of my lungs.
"Cancer is a hard thing to face. I'm sure that seventy five percent of you will encounter it in your lifetime. Maybe not you personally, but someone in your family..."
That was it.
All of the sharp things that ad been floating arond fell and stuck into my skin in a hundred different places. Tears boiled to the surface when he said the word cancer. Not only was my favorite teacher gone, but his death brought up thoughts of my Mamaw, which I had tried to get rid of a long time ago.
I covered my face and let the tears flow. Someone patted me on the back.
Life is so strange, I thought. If the strongest person in school couldn't survive, then what about the rest of us. Nobody is promised their next breath. Death is a hard thing. It's hard to accept that the person who was there is never going to be around ever again.
Just lost. We're all lost right now, but somehow we've got to move on.
May 4, 2010