Sunday, May 20, 2012

MIA...and sad, sad news

Well, it's been almost two weeks since my last post.  Another school year is coming to close and I always forget how busy and stressed I get.  However, this week was beyond just the ordinary busy school week.  It's a week that I will never forget.  A week that pulled the rug from under me.  A week that makes crafting seem so unimportant.  A week that makes me question if I can continue to teach, to continue to give a little bit of my heart away to each and every kid.  This week something incredibly tragic happened...something unimaginable.  You probably have already heard the story, but I feel the need to share the story from my perspective.  If you are someone who just doesn't want to hear bad news, stop here.  I don't blame you.  Sometimes, it just seems like that's all there is anymore and that the events these days are just so "hard to deal with".  So if you don't want to continue, I hope you will come back Monday morning, as I will be posting my creation for this week's upcoming Heart 2 Heart challenge (a happier post).  I wasn't sure I could even do the project, as the event from this past week really has me feeling depressed and has zapped me of my desire to create.  Thankfully though, I was able to meet my obligation and finish it and is ready to go Monday morning.

Anyway, here's the story...
Last Tuesday, I had just walked my students to the cafeteria and was heading up the stairs to the teacher's lounge to eat my lunch, when a teacher said to me, "Have you heard?"
"Heard what?", I asked.
"The kids are saying that it was some of our kids that were involved in the shooting this morning in Pt. St. John", she replied.
"What shooting?", I asked in shock.
"A mom killed all of her kids and then killed herself", she said with disbelief.
"Who?!" I asked, feeling tears coming to my eyes and my heart beginning to race.
"Jaxs and Pebbles."
I grabbed her hands and told her, "That's not true.  That can't be true.  Not Jaxs and Pebbles.  That  just can't be true.  I've got to find Officer _____.  He should know for sure."
We both turned and headed for the cafeteria where the SRO watches the kids.  However, once we entered the cafeteria and headed in his direction, he got called to the courtyard area outside the cafeteria, so the other teacher and I followed him and started to call out his name, when the assistant principal stopped us and just looked at us and nodded her head.  We both said, "So it's true?!"  She told us that it was and had wanted to catch us before we got too far into the crowd of students, knowing that we would both break down.

You may have heard the story on the news about the mother that killed all four of her kids and then shot herself.  Well, I taught two of those kids....Pebbles and Jaxs.  I taught Jaxs just last year and Pebbles three years ago.  It's just so hard to believe and I'm still crying.  I wanted to share this story with you because I feel like screaming at the TV every time I hear a reporter make some negative comment about this family.  It's such a shock, because the woman I knew, loved her kids.  Expected her kids to do their best in school, to be polite, to be good people.  She was supportive of them and was an involved parent.  I don't know what happened in her life this past year to drive her to do what she did and I'm not going to do what the media does and speculate.  The other thing that makes me want to scream is the negative light that the media has portrayed Jaxs.  The Jaxs I knew was a typical kid his age.  Loved his friends. Loved the girls.  Loved sports.  He did well in school, too.  He could have a little bit of a temper if provoked, but heck, so do many people.  The media has taken one incident between him and his mom and turned him into a problem child.  Again, I don't know what has happened in the last year, as a lot can happen (and change) in a year's time.  But I want you to know that the Jaxs I knew was a good boy.  And where Jaxs was a good boy, Pebbles was a near perfect young lady.  I absolutely adored her.  She was smart, polite and such a lady.  She was one of my favorite students.  She had been to our school numerous times in the last year or so to volunteer.  It truly breaks my heart to know she is gone.  The world lost some really wonderful young people last Tuesday.  Kids that could have been anything they wanted.

I'm asking you to not believe everything you hear on the news or over the internet, because from my experience, it's not all true.  In fact, very little of it is.  Another thing to avoid...comment sections of news websites, discussion boards and blogs that include hundreds of people spreading more hate and making judgments on people they never knew.  It doesn't change anything.  I want to remember the kids, and even Tonya, in the ways that I knew great kids and a loving mother.  I know "loving mother" may set some people off, but I do know that she loved her kids.  And because of this, I'm not angry at her.  I'm just sad....very, very sad.

Until next time...and under better circumstances...


  1. So sorry for your loss. (I appreciate your encouraging folks to not believe everything the media puts out!)

  2. My heart goes out to you and everyone at your school. As a teacher I know this really effects everyone. Thanks for sharing the good about this family. You must be one special teacher, hugs.

  3. Oh Tamytha. My prayers goes out to you, your fellow teachers, and the families who are bearing heavy hearts. You know, if you weren't heartbroken over this loss, you would have no place in teaching. It's obvious that you love what you do. You put your heart out there everyday for those kids. Not everyone can do that. Take care blogger friend. you'll get through this. Prayers and positive thoughts are being sent your way.

  4. I don't know of the sad incident you have mentioned, But it still touched my heart. You are so right when you say that you just can't judge things by what the media says. I feel for the family of these children and mother. Take care and try to hold on. melanie

  5. Tamytha, I'm so sorry to hear of this tragedy that has touched your life so deeply. I'm praying for you God's comfort and strength. Thank God for teachers like you who do more than just teach our kids (and grandkids), but truly love them as well.

  6. Tamytha -

    My heart goes out to you and your whole community. This kind of event effects people even if they didn't know the children involved. I can't imagine the pain and feelings of loss if you did know the children. Keep remembering the good and know that your caring heart is too precious to allow tragedy to change giving whole heartedly to your students and community.

    May you, your school and your community find healing and peace.



  7. Your post touched me, I did read the story and was saddened by it. Nothing is ever just one way or the other. This mother broke, and horrible consequenses followed. We all need to support each other and reach out and CARE and thats what so many teachers do everyday. Thankyou for being that kind of teacher. I hold you in prayer to recharge and be light for the next child (or mommy) who needs you.

  8. What a shock to find out that not only do you know this family, but taught two of their precious children. I am so very, very sorry for this tragic loss. I will keep you in my prayers.

  9. That is very sad, but I'm glad to have read your perspective on it, and hopefully it will help others to stop and think for a minute before making hasty judgments or comments. God bless you and your kind, loving heart.

  10. Wow - never read your blog before today and did not hear of this story but have tears with you. I am thankful you got to know this family in the best possible light and that you have such fond memories of them AND that you are SHARING them - I think that is so important for those people who did NOT know them. The media nowadays is so thoughtless and horrible.

    I am a CTMH Consultant also and caught your post with the Happy Dance- glad you are able to dance again!
    ;-) Best to you!
    Wendy in Tucson


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