it was a normal sunday morning.
sitting in church attempting to listen to the talks while wrestling with my 9 month old baby.
my new phone started buzzing. unsure of how to shut it off, i quickly answered it and hung up.
it was ashley.
i shot her a quick text.
hey sorry i'm in church and don't know how to work my phone! whats up?
.....i wish i wouldn't have asked.....
she text back immediately telling me she had news and asked for me to call her.
i told her i would call in about 30 minutes when church was out, but of course, my impatient curiosity got the best of me and I handed van to cosmo and told him I would be right back, walking out of the chapel, phone in hand.
I found the closest empty room and called Ashley.
She immediately picked up.
i hadn't even said hello and her voice cracked out a sobbing "jenn....."
my body tensed up, preparing for news that i knew was not going to be good.
"josh was killed in a car wreck yesterday morning..." she managed to blurt out between sobs.
I don't remember anything else that was said.
the whole room began to spin and everything went black. i felt like i had just been hit in the gut by a ton of bricks; the wind completely knocked out of me.
how? what? why?
my emotions escaped me.
i finished up the phone call and walked like a zombie back into the chapel. my tears were welling up as the realization of events begin to set in.
i sat down next to cosmo.
my whole body started shaking as i leaned over and whispered the news to him as fast as i could.
he looked at me in disbelief as his hand grabbed my leg in an attempt to comfort.
the tears began. one after another they fell down my face.
no one in the room existed.
my mind raced back to memories.
late night conversations and days filled with fun. there was never a dull moment with josh.
he knew who he was and was one of those people that sincerely didn't care what anyone else thought.
his small stature covered in tattoos. his energy was contagious and he almost dared anyone not to join in on his infectious good times.
he loved 80's metal and taylor swift. (sorry josh, was that a secret?) he tore it up on the drums. he loved wings at native new yorker and when going out to eat, you couldn't ask josh where to go, or that is where you would end up. even if you had already eaten there the past 2 nights in a row. he told stories with so much enthusiasm he could make a trip to the dentist sound exciting.
i'm reminded of how he held my hand during my first tattoos and laughed at me as my grip tightened.
during a particular rough patch in life, josh told me i was beautiful every time i saw him.
when i would blush in embarrassment he would tell me i needed to hear it and believe it and he wasn't going to stop.
we were both turning 30 this year.... he's still so young....
i think about nights spent at the monastery. josh was always the smallest one on the sand volley ball court and it always made me laugh to see how pumped up he got about playing.
there were halloweens and birthdays. there were nights that were "perfect".
the closing song began to play and it snapped me back into reality.
my face was soaked from tears and my body felt numb.
i forced on a smile until we could go home.
cosmo gives me reassuring glances as he teaches his sunday school lesson.
the seemingly normal day, turned tragic, finally comes to an end.
see you on the other side josh. miss you already....
|joshua slayton october 14, 1982 - july 21, 2012|