My Heart Goes Out

I’m working on qualitative research for my thesis on the topic of blended families. The workload is overwhelming, yet fascinating. I took a study break today to grab a Starbuck’s coffee, my sure solution to perk up.

When I approached the counter I was overwhelmed in the real sense of the word as I read the headline of the Star Tribune, “In somber shock, four vibrant lives mourned.” I sat in the corner of the store with tears streaming my face as I read about Danielle Renninger, Jordan Playle, Megan Sample and Lauren Peterson, all North Dakota State students from Minnesota. These beautiful girls were killed in a car crash yesterday during one of our first snowy storms of the season.

All I can think about is I don’t know the definition of being overwhelmed today. All I can think about is that I don’t know what it is like to lose a child at the age of 18 when her future is so big and bright. All I can think about are the parents and their tears and their torn out hearts.

A driver in a third car who rear-ended the SUV that hit the girls commented, “It happened in less than a second.”

That is all the time it takes to make life go from ordinary to overwhelming. Less than a second.

My heart goes out to the parents in their grief and loss. I am praying that our community surrounds them with support and care.  I pray that each person who reads my blog today will make a commitment to share comfort with the families of these amazing daughters. Even a simple prayer offered on their behalf can bring strength.  And I pray that we can let go of something that is overwhelming us today and see a bigger picture–see that life is precious and fragile and fleeting.

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