Grieving: Death Always Comes in Threes

I can’t imagine being a mother of a 36-year-old man and finding out he was shot and killed in the middle of the night by someone who shared the same bloodline. I couldn’t imagine being a mother of any child who dies before me. But unfortunately, I know several mothers and fathers who live daily with aching hearts because their child is no longer with them. No parent should have to endure such pain. But if you believe in God, you know that God makes no mistakes.

For mothers of murdered children, it hurts more how their children left this world, then their actual death because we all know from dust we were made and to dust we will return. Murder is such a senseless, cowardly act.

There is a myth some people believe that states death happens in threes. I don’t like to believe in superstitions, but I have actually witnessed this. After this young man passed, another young man, barely 30 years old whom I knew through a very good friend of mine died in a house fire while he was asleep. That broke my heart too because his girlfriend is like a sister to me and her devastation is heartbreaking to watch. The next day a friend I met through FaceBook gained his wings as well. Threes. It shouldn’t be fathomable that this tale would be true, but in my experience, it usually comes to pass.

There have been several murders a day between my town, Tuscaloosa. and surrounding counties, such as Birmingham. The occurrence of gun violence has steadily increased over the past couple of years. We are constantly burying our sons, daughters, brothers, and sisters and their murderers have no regard for human life at all. Shootings should not be the norm. I blame the murderers, not the victims. There is always another way to handling a situation that gunning someone down in cold blood.

Before I say this, I want to preface it within no way, do I blame any parent for the actions of their grown children. But, I do believe that discipline for bad behavior has to start at home. I think that we have got to do better as parents and members of their village. We have to watch over our children and protect them physically and with prayer. In the news here there have been several small children picked up by police or concerned citizens after they’ve wandered away from home. How do you not know where your two-year old is? How do you not know your child is not in the house. It starts at home. We have got to pay more attention. With sex trafficking on the rise, we need to be diligent about protecting our children.

It costs nothing to teach love, respect, and kindness. As parents, it’s our job to teach the first lessons our children will learn because the world will teach them enough rough ones without our help.

If we teach the right ones while they are growing up, perhaps the wrong ones will not have such a negative impact on their lives. Perhaps then, in the near future, if we must lose our babies at an early age, it won’t be at the hands of family or friends. But at the same time, gun violence is so prevalent these days that I can’t honestly say I believe it will be a thing of the past because, sadly, no one is listening. They would rather gun you down than talk. It makes no sense!

I’m disappointed and saddened,


Valerie Collins
Valerie Collins
Valerie Collins was born in Tucson, Az, the last of six children. She has loved writing since a child but decided to pursue a career in Orthopedic nursing. Shortly after her marriage and birth of her first child at the age of 22, she was diagnosed with the chronic pain disease, Fibromyalgia, its subsequent conditions, illnesses, and syndromes. Once the disease disabled her in 2001, she revisited her passion for writing poetry and short stories and has accumulated over 100 poems and spoken word pieces over the years. She became a member of the International Society of poets in 2002 and The International Who's Who in Poetry in 2006. She currently is a member of Realistic Poetry International, Who's Who Among American Business Women, and Women of Facebook Create. Her accolades include 2005 Poet of the Year. She was awarded both the Outstanding Achievement Award in Poetry and the Official Commemorative Poetry Ambassador Medal while serving as a Poetry Ambassador associate in 2007. She wrote a play entitled “Fix Me Jesus” in 2012 for Alabama 1st COGIC State AIM Youth Convention Competition drama category which was awarded second place. Currently, she is in rehearsals for her second stage play for the local playwright, Shawna D. Moore which will be on stage in August 2019. She is in the process of compiling a two-volume poetry book entitled My Poetic Life: A Memoir of Love and a book detailing her life with Fibromyalgia, entitled Behind the Walls of Silence. In July 2018, she created her first blog site My Poetic Life (The Book) as @vfurrmstheblogger to act as a launch for both books and it has taken on a life of its own. She also owns a small crochet business, Val's Gifts of Warmth, where she sells her handmade crochet items.

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  1. I am with you all the way Valerie that home is where it all starts (or should start) and that parenting demands immense responsibility and commitment. There are no half-measures about this because only a loving home can provide emotional fulfillment.

    Nevertheless, I would also like to add that as adults (as parents or not) we also need to reflect on what we have contributed/contribute to the world regarding values, perceptions, shooling, work, leisure, sport, the environment, business, politics, the media… and so many other spheres of activity. Do we question where all the champions of violence, corruption, and shirking of responsibility come from? Do we question the impact of a society enshrining litigation? Above all do we care to be vocal and take action or simply remain apathetic and/or give up because it all seems so daunting?

    Daunting it certainly its but I am a firm believer in winning over even just one person and showing children the wonder of love is where it all begins.

    • Naemi,
      This is my platform. We all have to take advantage of our platforms we have in life and be as vocal as possible. These articles come from my blog which I started a little over a year ago. I have raised my kids and have a hand in raising my nieces and nephews to all be the best humans they can to others and to value human life in all instances regardless of who they are to them. But yet they live in a world where they’ll be pulled over, harassed, beat or killed before they turn 19 because of the color of their skin. They are angry and do not regard life because all they see in the street and in the media is that life has no regard for them. But there are great groups of young people trying to take control of the world their children will have to bring children into. And that gives me hope.

    • I so agree with this article.We must do better, as parents and adults, to teach our children and to be good role models for good moral behavior. They are watching us…it’s our responsibility. Christine Thomas Doran

    • Thank you Christine. We have to follow these words by Dr. Maya Angelou, “Do the best you can until you know better. When you know better be better”.

    • I know our children don’t always go in the direction which they were taught in life but it’s better to be that in your face parent than to never know what’s going on in your child’s life.