Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Reality Check

Today, The Boy wasn't at school before school. He wasn't seen passing between classes. He wasn't in French class (with The Best Friend). He didn't answer his cell phone after school.

Today was "Every Fifteen Minutes".

Today, every 15 minutes the bell sounded throughout the high school campus and sounded like a heart beat....followed by the sound of a flatline. Some classes were then visited by a police officer who read the obituary of a classmate who wouldn't be coming back. Then the officer placed a rose on the desk of the missing student.

Kait was a MESS. The Boy wasn't in school. With every passing moment when she SHOULD have seen him and he wasn't there, she got more frantic. By the end of the day when he didn't answer his phone, Kait and The Best Friend were hysterical. And The Best Friend isn't too keen on The Boy most days...

When he showed up at the Science Olympiad meeting after school, Kait hugged him tight. Then slugged him.

He was oblivious.

There was no warning about this event. A day is chosen and students are asked to stay home for the day. The Boy was not one of them. But "popular and visible Seniors" are the ones that are asked and The Boy fits that description. He just chose to take a day to catch up on homework or something. Serendipity.

Telling us about her day sent Kaitlyn back into tears. Yesterday she knew a friend could die. Yesterday she knew that drunk drivers kill people. Today she felt it. She KNEW The Boy was no doubt just fine. He simply had been chosen to be the victim. But she FELT his absence. His "death" was felt to her core. The sobs were real sobs.

We talked about why she doesn't have her license yet. Why it is that we are so strict about her showing personal responsibility. She 'knew'. Ok.... so yea.. driving...responsibility... yada yada yada. But the idea of being DEAD. Not here kind of dead. Or....worse... killing a friend. Having to face the parents of The Boy or The Best Friend then live with the fact that she killed her best friend.... she FELT it today.

Reality check today.
Reality check tomorrow. Tomorrow it continues.

Prom is Saturday.

Today, in near tears, her English teacher told her class that if anyone needed a ride home on Saturday, call her. She'll be there, but call her. She wants them all back on Monday morning.

Reality check.


Anonymous said...

I read Kait's blog today. When I read your's,I thought "The boy" was a "victim", and I got tears.

This is done here every year and from talking with parents whose children have been involved, this is VERY powerful.

This. is. a. good. program.


agent713 said...

Wow. That sounds intense. And effective. Good for them.

Martha in CA said...

(as we talkeda about today, but now I can share with others...)

My co-worker's daughter was one of the "victims". I knew, thankfully, last week this was going to happen, but it still made my heart skip a beat when a police officer, a chaplain, and a chaplain's assistant came to the office today and asked to speak with T "some place private". They gave her a picture of A in a body bag. Knowing this was "pretend", I chose to look at A as if she were in her sleeping bag. Asleep.

Last week I needed tissue when T told me what was to happen. This week, when she told me A's ex-boyfriend found out the plan (his mom committed suicide last fall), I got choked up at random times throughout the day. He was able to opt out of going to school the past two days. Sadly, I bet he stayed home. Alone.

I know messages need to be heard. It breaks my heart that they have to be felt too.

Martha in CA said...

(edit: the chaplain was there yesterday...TODAY was the assembly and T was out of work for the day)

Imaginer said...

This stuff still has me shaking, it's so hard to realize that you're not invincible and this kind of thing can happen and your life can be over in an instant. It's so scary and so eye opening.

Elaine said...

OK, this made me cry. :(

Lee said...

I'm completely shaken. Very intense.

Maria in DE said...

Don't know why I picked today to click on your siggy but I'm glad (soooo not the right word) I did.

This is a powerful thing. I don't know if they do something like it here.

But I hope so.

Hope all is well with you and yours...