Facebook has a habit of reminding me of some bittersweet things. Today it was the memories of people that left this world too soon. My nephew and two of my friends. All three in a row.

The first that left was my nephew. He was 12 years old. His death was terrifying. He was skateboarding one evening and he swerved out. The truck driver didn’t see him in time to stop. It was brutal. He was so young. It was one moment that all of us wish could have gone differently. I spent the day with my family. My friends sent me pictures of Prom.

The second that left us was my friend Clayton. He was a light in this world. He was happy and always smiling. He did theatre at my high school and was a true love to another friend of mine. His death was horrific. It was unnecessary. It truly could have been avoided. I think that’s what makes it so painful even after two years. His death was avoidable.

Then Iris. Sweet, compassionate Iris. She was at the river with her family. The current was picking up and no one saw her fall. She was laughing and having a carefree afternoon. But the water quickened and the rocks were sharp. Her boyfriend tried to get her. Everyone was too late. She was under for too long. I did theatre with her. She told me her hopes and dreams. She confided in me. She was only 15. I couldn’t do anything.

All three of them impacted me. The end of my senior year was a bittersweet time. Instead of enjoying most of the senior activities like Prom and the after parties, I said goodbye to people I cared about. The heartbreak was very real. Facebook reminded me about the last show I did with Iris, the balloon release for my nephew, and the memorial for Clayton. These memories were hard to stomach.


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