Grief on Facebook

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.


  1. Good. Tears are our way to make sure their graves are watered until God brings us all home. Jamar is not forgotten. Praise God!

  2. Yes, those places where a beloved name should be, but cannot be, can trigger a fresh round of tears. I remember a time about 2 years after losing my son. I had to replace my cell phone and the clerk at the store offered to transfer my contact list to the new phone. He suggested it would be a good time to go through the list on the old phone and remove unnecessary numbers. You have no idea how long I paused and pondered over my son’s name on that list. I couldn’t delete it. I kept it, but I still went home and cried. Wishing you peace on the journey…

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