Sunday night, on the way back from the airport, my mom and I stopped by her boyfriend's house and found him dead.
It was hands down the most horrifying thing I've ever seen. I'd never even seen a dead body before at a funeral, let alone like that.
Somehow, I had the wherewithal to call 911, because Mom could barely breathe enough to tell me the address to his house. Then we had to deal with the paramedics coming to confirm that there was nothing to be done because he'd been gone too long and the police coming to make a report.
Then came the phone calls. I finally got up with his parents, but Mom took the phone long enough to tell them, which was good seeing as I'd never met or spoken to them before.
Then I texted Holly, called Mom's best friend Julie (a professional psychologist of all things), and got Mommom to bring Uncle Kirk over so they could get me and Mom home since she could barely see straight. As I waited for them, I called Clayton and Pastor Ben because I'd been trying so hard to be strong for Mom at first, but by that point I had lost all sense of composure. Eventually we were clear to leave as his parents and their pastor were there to deal with everything else. I barely slept that night because I couldn't get the images out of my head. I didn't really sleep much the next two nights, either.
Today was the funeral. Mom is my hero. She was so strong, I don't know how she did it. Several of the guys that were in the same fraternity as her and Jim were at the funeral, and I know that did her good. His whole family knew that I was with Mom and found his body with her, so I was getting a lot of attention, too, and all I could think was I shouldn't be a concern here.
I'm just heartbroken for her. Jim's dad told her that he had mentioned that he was "going to get engaged this week". She has loved him since she was 15. She went through a marriage that wasn't good, she sacrificed everything for me and my sisters, she was so close to finally getting her happily ever after, and boom, it was ripped away from her. He was the first fatherly figure I've had since my dad died, so that compounds the anger I feel for my mom.
But there's one thing that has been stuck in my head since Sunday night. "God, I don't know what you're doing, but I know who you are." That's all I've got. And I pray that God will help Mom to find peace in the weeks and months to come.
Please pray, not just for my mom, but for Jim's daughter, who is 18 and in the middle of her senior year of high school, his sister, and his parents. Thanks, y'all.