Third Annual SuperHero Shirt Day

For the last two years, I’ve blogged about the loss of my young friend James Stewart. He was tragically taken from his family and friends at the age of eighteen. The loss of this young man’s life has left a huge void in the many lives he has touched. While I wasn’t close to him, I’m surprised by how much this event impacted my own personal life.

The pain and suffering of a parent’s loss for a child is unfathomable, I can only imagine that it’s a pain that never goes away. Even being told by my friends how their pain hasn’t gotten better, makes me thankful that I haven’t loss my own children, and I hope that I’ll be able to pass on before they do. My love for my friends has never been deeper and I’m the most stanch supporter for these people, and hope that it gets easier to deal with.

Two years has passed, and this was the third get together to honor the memory of James. I noticed the people amassing together has gotten smaller, and people who weren’t directly involved have pushed the subject to the back burners of their minds. Life goes on, right? People have their own lives to live, and most of us are fortunate enough to kiss our children and tuck them in at night. Lucky us….

I’ve had friends and family lose children. Still birth, accidents, etc. How do they continue on when something they’ve dealt with for so long. Can we, the lucky one’s even try to put ourselves in that situation? This is an uncomfortable subject that many would look down and shuffle their feet while it’s being mentioned around them.  So, let’s take a moment of silence, and remember those who’ve gone through hell.

As a man, I look at my children, and see my legacy being continued on. I’m sure there’s a bit of ego in there to see that the lineage will continue on for years, with children coming for many generations. I’m sure that’s the way many people feel… Now, picture that being torn away from you in an instant. Maybe it started with a questionable feeling? Then, at a later time, you get that phone call… your gut already knew what the audible was telling you. Shit, it just got real, and now it’s gone. Life as you knew it just ceased to exist. That’s deep, and as I write this, it just got deeper for me too.

There are many failings that I, as a man, as a father, as a son, have done in my life. Things that I know that I can never express the kind of sorrow that I have for my actions. Things said, things done. I don’t let my past define who I am, unfortunately, we live in a time where every action, every word that has ever been said or done, is being scrutinized. The sins of the past have come to haunt us, even if we’re different people than who we were. I use James Gunn as an example, because Disney let him go as a director for tweets that were made ten plus years ago. Is that where we’ve come from as a society. Offend the few now with things from the past, and it comes to ruin for someone’s career? Life?

I have a glimmer of hope that deep down inside, we are better than that as a society. I’ve always held that hope. That’s why things like racism, and sexism baffle my mind. We’ve should have evolved as a society beyond these thoughts, long ago. I see that we’re slowly getting there, but then there are other parts that end up just as bad. The bullied become the bully. This was try in my youth as well.

After many years of being called names and being treated bad, I had become what I hated. Hell there are memes based on being a hero, but living long enough to be the bad guy. There’s truth in that, and what’s sad is that you don’t always see it coming. You try to rationalize it as doing “just deserts” and you don’t always realize that you’re in the wrong.

I’m a believer in redemption. I’ve over came things to be a better person. Hell the themes in the stories I write generally have some sort of theme, wether major or minor, has to do with redemption. I think people can change for the better, and no matter what experience takes you to that other place. I believe that anyone can be a stronger person for it. Which brings everything back around to the original subject…

The loss of a child can be a rally cry to have things change for the better. A child drowns, that means that there needs to be better safety standards. Toys that are choking hazards, accidents… Something’s gone wrong somewhere and it needs to be answered for. Nobody should have to deal with the loss of their child. Children are the future, and we need to make it better for them.

This is the Director, and let’s try to love ourselves and each other a bit more.

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