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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Losing Someone Special

Saturday we received a call that a client we worked with had passed away. Jimmy was 37 years old and was more than a client. We are friends with him and his family. I helped take care of Jimmy when he came to the agency I used to work for 8 years ago. Dave helped take care of him after I left the agency. Jimmy had severe disabilities. I became close to Jimmy's mom. I met Jimmy's sister and brother. We kind of became part of the family.

It was a shock to hear those words from Dave's mouth. Dave got off the phone with his boss and told me that Jimmy had passed away. What? No, not Jimmy. He hadn't been sick. It seems he had a seizure and died suddenly. We didn't know what to do. We didn't want to burden his mom or family by going to visit them. They needed to grieve right?

Then I remembered how I wished more people would have been with us when my dad passed away last year. It's funny how people shy away from you when you have a death in the family. That's when you need people the most. People will say "call if you need anything." Like you are going to call, you are too busy grieving or in shock. People are afraid to ask how you are doing. It's like a subject that is off limits. And maybe to some people it is or they want to grieve alone. But for me, I know that I needed people and support. I didn't reach out, but waited for people to reach out to me. Losing someone is a time to come together. It's a time when you need people and you need people to not be afraid to support you, grieve with you, talk about it, etc.

We decided to go over to the family's house. We needed to show our support and grieve with them. It was the right decision. The house was a buzz with friends and family showing their support, grieving together and remembering Jimmy.

It seems so unfair for a mother, or a parent, to outlive their own child. The only thing I can say in this case is that at least now she won't have to worry about who will take care of her child after she is gone.


  1. It's good that you went over there. I asked myself the same thing when I heard about Jon. Ultimately I got in my car and then got on a plane. It makes a difference that you were there.

  2. You did the right thing. It's always hard to know what people want when they're grieving but they can always ask for privacy if they want to be alone.

    37 is awfully young. I'm so sorry for his family.