I am at a complete loss today.  Growing up I was very close with one of my cousins.  We played together daily, told each other our secrets, spent the night together, etc.  We were close through Junior High school, but as we went into High school, we no longer lived next to one another and attended different schools.  So, although we still got along swimmingly, the dynamics of life made it to where we didn't spend as much time together.

Fast forward 20 years and we are both married, she with two children ages 13 and 12, and me with four ages 11, 7, 6, and 1.  Yesterday I received the devastating news that her 13 year old committed suicide.  He had just yesterday returned from a Christian teen camp that we all attended one week a year growing up and of course all the children continue to do so.  After returning home he went to his room and when he didn't return within a reasonable time frame his father checked on him to find he had hung himself.  Such a waste of what could have been, his life. 

I cannot fathom what could have tormented this poor child to the point that he felt life is hopeless, no way out and to taking his own life.  As a mother it devastates me, makes me realize anew to cherish every moment we have, not to take anything for granted.  I desperately hope that it wasn't a religion that drove him to this.  Our traditional Christianity is based off of guilt.  Do this, or you will burn, Jesus would be unhappy if you do this, etc.  I am not anti-God or Church, but over the years I have drifted away from the hell-fire preaching we grew up with and believe that God is a much more loving God than the tyrant we were raised to believe He is.    My heart is so sad for this family and their loss as well as for the torment this child was in in his last hours. 

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