Grief is an interesting thing. Sometimes there can be the strangest triggers for mourning.
Yesterday, I received a friend invite on Facebook from a young woman I knew back in Chicago. I have to say that Facebook and Myspace have both been really great for getting back in touch with youth I have known over the years. Sometimes I have been really surprised by who has looked me up and how they have found me. I accepted her friend request and sent her a little note yesterday afternoon, and after helping get kiddos tucked into their beds last night, I settled into my bed with some Isaiah commentaries and my laptop. At one point, I got distracted by Facebook and ended up going to the profile page for this young woman. I wanted to see if there were any other kids from the old neighborhood in her friends list, so I opened it and scanned through.
The friends list was ordered alphabetically by first name, and as I was scanning the names I suddenly felt this intense catch in my throat. I realized that I had come to the letter “J”, and that subconsciously I had looked for or hoped to see Jamar’s name. And when it wasn’t there, I was reminded that he won’t ever have the chance to have a Facebook page or reconnect with old friends or exchange notes with me as an adult. He is dead, and last night there was a huge gaping hole, a bullet wound of sorts, in a list of Facebook friends.
His name should have been there. It won’t ever be. I still have tears for this.