May 15, 2024

What Should Have Been

This was written August 15, 2018 on what should have been the first day of Rhett’s senior year. While all days are tough, "should have been" are especially hard on the heart.

Lorna Hering

I have not been out to the grave that holds Rhett’s body in over two years...

not since August of 2016.

It’s just too much to take in. I normally cannot handle the pain.

But after dropping Mara off at the high school this morning, I found myself sitting out here by your grave...wishing, weeping, and wanting things to be different.

You should be starting your Senior year today.

We didn’t get to go school clothes shopping.

You didn’t pick out a new backpack or fancy new athletic shoes.

You aren’t sore and worn out from football practice.

We didn’t get to go “meet” your teachers.

We aren’t talking about the ACT/SAT scores or what colleges you want to apply to.

I’m not buying “football mom” shirts, and they didn’t call your name at “Meet the Bulldogs”.

Your sister will cheer on Friday nights, but not for you. This was NOT how she dreamed it would be.

Ryan won’t be rushing home from A&M after his last class of the week to watch his little brother play under the Friday Night Lights.

There will be no “cap and gown” pictures, or graduation invitations, or new patches for a letter jacket.

No victories to celebrate. No losses to lament. Nothing.

All of that was stolen on December 28, 2015. Gone. Taken. Vanished, with no warning.

You did not get to drive to school and walk into the building as a senior this morning.
Nor will you tomorrow. Or the next day. Or ever.

Jimmy and I will attend as many school events as our hearts can handle this year, and we will process our grief together when we get home.

There are simply no words to describe how much losing you has changed our lives.

Your death is my never-ending heartache.

I have many questions about that cold December day, but I am SURE that Jesus rescued you. You were, are, and forever will be His!

This year will be hard for me, Rhett Jett.

I long for you to be present...

to be here with your friends, on the teams, in our home, sitting at our bar eating dinner, hunting, laughing, sleeping in your bed, hugging me, breathing and living.

Breathing and living.

Living and breathing.


With us.

This was supposed to be your year!

I pray for the strength to honor God, you, and your memory as we wade through the waters of “what should have been”. Those waters are turbulent, deep, and unpredictable.

It’s so easy to drown and so hard to stay above water.

Jesus, we need you. Please, be our anchor, our ever-present help in times of trouble.

Rhett, keep visiting me in my dreams. Just a glimpse of you can sustain me.

I love you! I miss you! I always will!

Rhett Curtis Hering

Senior year 2018-2019