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What Ifs in a Scary Place

January 18, 2014

We don’t start to think about anything until we are faced with a fatal preposition: “near death.” Just today, I found out that one of my old buddies from elementary school and his older brother were in a one vehicle car wreck and are in critical condition. Even though I haven’t spoken to him since our group project in eighth grade Algebra 1, I still miss his stable presence. He has always been someone that I knew was there in the far corners of my mind, and in distant faded memories.

I remember the kindergarten treasure hunt, where he was the one who found the box full of glorious candy. Do you remember when the tennis shoes that looked like toe socks were really cool? He was the first person I knew that had a pair. He is known for his soccer, he eats, lives, and breathes soccer. In eighth grade, he didn’t smile a hole lot, but when he did it would light up a room.
The picture is on the front page of the newspaper. Their red Jeep, crushed by its own weight. The same weight that must be crushing down on their parents’ hearts right now.
Something else happened today that is pressing me to write. After I had finished my first Spanish 2 quiz of the new semester, I wrote some lyrics from Taking Back Sunday’s Cute Without the E (cut from the team) and Escape the Fate’s Forget About Me. After I turned in my quiz, the guy sitting to my right placed his hand on my desk and looked me straight in the eyes. I quickly took in his features, like I do everyone that crosses my path. His mouse brown hair waved around the ends near his light forehead. His eyes were blue, if I’m not mistaken. He has a face you can’t forget. But not in a bad way. He isn’t like every other “teenie bopper” (as my mother would put it). He wore a light blue name brand shirt and plain ole blue jeans. (I think he has braces also.)
He asked me, “Are you okay?”
I was a little stunned so I replied, “yeah, I’m cool.”
He nodded and sat back in his seat, clearly thinking.
He turned back to means asked, “Were those song lyrics?”
“Yeah, they were.” I replied, trying to figure out where he was going to say next.
“Okay, because they were starting to freak me out.” I guess those song lyrics taken out of context are a little strange. We spoke a few more syllables about bands and music. But I don’t really remember most of it.
During lunch, a girl in my English honors class called my name. She asked if this boy in my Psychical World Concepts class could borrow my bell ringers. Now this guy had olive skin without a blemish, solid dark brown hair, brown eyes, and a north face jacket. He stood there quiet, looking kind of shy. Of course I let him borrow my notebook, it was no big deal.
It felt as if those two extremes took a toll on me. The boy in my Spanish class had the guts to speak, to say something that wasn’t “needed”. But it felt good to know someone other than my family cared enough to even speak to me. I commend this boy, it takes guts to speak. The opposite was the boy scared to speak. I thought it was kind of funny, because not a year ago, I was just like him.
In the midst of all this craziness, I’ve been thinking about speaking and telling others what so desperately needs to be said. What if I told Spanish Boy he was brave, or that I still thought about the boy in the wreck even before it happened, or that PWC Boy doesn’t need to be scared, because I won’t bite, I swear. What if some one stopped the boys to talk to them before they drove home in that red jeep? What if I had spoken to the boy crying in Spanish 1 or the boy just broken down I front of everyone? What if I didn’t hesitate to give a helping hand? What if Spanish Boy never said a word? What if the same wreck happens to some one else? What if I died tomorrow? Did I say all that I needed to while I was here?
I hate being a “What if.” Please speak, and pray for these two boys. That is all I ask.



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  1. RainDancer permalink

    The only way to live is to live like you’re dying, I guess. The wreck has made me think that, too.

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