A Tribute to Grief

Happy Halloween, everyone. Normally this holiday is a day of frights and fears, a day of shrieks and screams. I planned to write a happy post today, one of ghouls and goblins and merry things to do this Halloween.

But tonight on my campus, this holiday is a sobering remembrance of lost loved ones. All hallows eve haunts all of the students as we deal with the unexpected and tragic death of one of our dining hall employees. We have barely heard any details, but even those who did not know her well are saddened.

If someone you’ve known has died, I’m sorry for your loss. This Halloween it’s okay to go to parties and dress up, but it’s also okay to grieve. It doesn’t matter how well you knew them or how often you hung out with them. What matters is the people who have passed through and touched our lives.

Cindy was a cheerful woman who took the time to know each student personally, including me. I, like many other students, joked with her when she swiped my meal card, and she called me by name. She even wrote an advice article to all students last week in our school newspaper. And now as we read her last letter, we feel that loss.

I’ve lost very few people for my age: Grandma Pat (not my biological grandmother, but a dear family friend), Miss Melissa (my dance teacher and my mom’s best friend), Blake and Blaine (brothers a few years younger than me), and now Cindy. But each death still feels like yesterday.

Tonight, will you please remember all of the lives of these people we’ve lost – all of the laughs and smiles you shared that should be present on Halloween? I grieve with you, my friends, but remember tomorrow is all saints day. The people I miss have moved on to a better place, and I’m sure are looking down on us all. Hold hope in that.

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