unmoving tragedy

She and I shared a birthday.

March 27.

Every time birthdays came up in conversation she would remind me that ours was on the same day.

She expressed displeasure that I would be gone on maternity leave for our birthday.

Then she dropped my class.

She told me she loved me as a teacher, but just “sort of hated” Spanish class.

And there was the whole being switched to 3rd hour with none of her friends.

That bummed her out.

But she still made sure to stop and see me in the hall.

To pat my growing baby bump.

To tell me she missed me and my stories.

She had the weirdest sense of humor.

Like “laugh out loud and the goofiest stuff” sense of humor.

She never minded asking questions before thinking about them.  And then if we laughed, she laughed too.

“Mrs. Sluiter!  You’re getting HUGE!”

That is one of the last things I remember her saying to me back in March.

“Have a good baby!” she would say and then crack herself up.

Boys were a distraction she found hilarious.

Not shy, she would tell any guy he was being a dweeb.

Although she would never say “dweeb,” but she would totally laugh all hour long if she heard ME say “dweeb”.

I don’t know what to do when these things happen.

I tend to get obsessive.

Clicking every. single. link. to make sure it’s really her.

And feeling my stomach turn each time she smiles back at me through my screen.

I hold my boys’ faces in my hands…too long.  They wiggle away.

I am all to aware of the “away” part.


But they are too little yet to understand.

However I am painfully aware of how fast they grow up.

She was 15.

On March 27.

Kids know from very, VERY young that drinking and driving don’t mix.

They KNOW.

But just a couple weeks ago I watched, on the Today Show, as kids who KNOW got into a car with someone pretending to be drunk.

I remembering wishing I could share this with my students.

Because it was them that I thought of first.

I am so tired of tragedy.

It crawls in my heart and sits like an overweight sloth.



My life is so wonderful.

I am blessed in so many ways.

And yet…

Tragedy is shredding people I care about.

And I can’t help but be affected by it.

I keep stepping into the shoes of mothers who have lost.

I want to kick off the shoes.

I want to be an unfeeling ass.

Wouldn’t that be easier than this?

Time moves so quickly for me.  My boys grow so fast.

And yet for those mothers, time has all but stopped.

She was 15.

She will always be 15.

I will miss your smile, Krysta.