It was clear to us that Josh's death impacted them deeply and still does. We are all grieving - individually and together.
They were able to give us continued insight into the difficult waters that teenagers must navigate these days. Not only are the academic pressures so great, especially for teens who live in the Northern Virginia area, but as we can all guess, the social pressures and temptations can be overwhelming as well. If this were not enough, stress within the family can take what is difficult and make it almost unbearable.
Was Josh feeling all of these things? I would say "yes". Getting into trouble at school for the second time meant facing probably expulsion and leaving another group of friends that he had just made. And although it was clear that we were willing to support and assist him, we were disappointed that he made decisions that brought him back to where we started in the first place when he had to leave Langely HS. I am beginning to think that all of this was just too much for him to bear and that he did not have the ability to cope, nor the motivation to reach out to call someone who could help him.
How I wish this weren't so because then, maybe he would've had the ability to see himself through that awful night, and have woken up to a new day with all of its possibilities.
A couple of days after our visit, I received this beautiful poem written by his friend. With her permission, I'd like to share it with all of you. God Bless.
You Are Near
By Hayley Savage
I can't believe this happened, I feel so dumb and blind,
Everyone's in pain Josh, all the people left behind.
It wasn’t supposed to be this way, that's not how death's designed.
I wish you would have thought twice, I know you would have changed your mind.
Josh, I don’t know what to do now, this is way to much to bear,
Who do I go to when I need help? Now that you are not there.
It's real hard to move on Josh, I’m reminded everywhere
I'm so angry that you did this, for all of us it is not fair.
The future that you had, well I guess we’ll never know
You could have done so many things, its amazing how you’ve grown.
The pain you must have felt, I wish we could have known
We would have been beside you, so you didn’t feel alone.
I guess you’ll never understand all that talent gone to waste
All the tears and all the thoughts and struggles we must face.
Josh I really wish that you would fill something in the place
Of all of our broken hearts because there is an empty space.
I know if you could go back, you would probably undo
The thing that caused our hurt and pain, all we want is you.
As we look up in the sky and try to find a sign that you are here
I feel the wind and hear the trees and know that you are near.