Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sonya Michelle Smith

Things seemed to be going great for me here in Matthattan. About the time I was rounding up to my third week here... one of my all time good friends, Sonya, passed away. August 10, 2009 is the day she passed. I had just visited her in the hospital before I left for NYC so I could spend some time with her. When I heard that she passed, at first I wasn't going to make the trip home to the funeral. Selfish I think now... but it was a must when I heard that her mother wanted me to be a pallbearer. I instantly knew that I COULD NOT miss it. The total trip wiped out my savings... but the amount of personal growth that was bought with that worldly money is completely worth it.

First, I had to worry about asking off of work for two days at a job I have only been at for two weeks. Shockingly, the stereotype was broken when my bosses showed that, as New Yorkers, they had hearts and let me off ! Thank you so much Serendipity! I'll never forget that.

I left for Alabama at 4 in the morning on Wednesday the 12th and made in home about 11:00 or so (Thank God for Dana Campbell for being my chauffeur from and to the airport). I took some time to go around my college town to visit old co-workers, made a trip to one of my sisters' work to visit, then went home to rest before the viewing that night. I was a mess all day... I wanted to cry all day but the world tells us that men don't cry... so I tried to hold t in. While my mom and one of my sisters were getting ready to leave for the viewing, I couldn't take it anymore. I ran into my mom's room where they were and lost it. Full on LOST IT! It had hit me that I was about to see one of my life friends in her casket. After I somewhat calmed down... we made our way to see her. When I got to the funeral home I had so many emotions running through my mind. I was sad to say goodbye to Sonya, but while at the viewing, I saw SO many of my good childhood friends from school. I even found myself laughing at times regardless of the circumstances. I'm sure Sonya was ok with that. The night ended with my friend Jessica Fair and me going to Jefferson's for some wings and a pitcher. We didn't even touch the pitcher...

Thursday the 13th was the day of Sonya's funeral. I had also been asked the day I arrived in Alabama if I would/could speak at the funeral. Again... such a hard thing to do... but something I had to do. The service was great. Four of us spoke... all of which were so great and moving. I went last, ending it on what I guess I could call a "happy" note. Then after the service, the other pallbearers and I carried Sonya to the hearse... then again to her place where she lay now at the cemetery. After it was all done, I went to eat with some of my peeps at a Mexican joint, then went with Jessica to visit Sonya's mom at their house. After all that... I had a little time left to spend with my family (not enough though, I might add). After hanging with the fam, Dana carried me back to the airport, and I made the trip back "home" to NYC.

When I got back to Matthattan at 9:00 am, I dropped my stuff off at my apartment, and went straight to work at 10:30. I was drained emotionally, physically, and mentally! I was pretty much a zombie at work. When I got home from work... I immediately went to bed. While waiting to fall asleep... I had so many thoughts.

- Oh no... I have no more savings.
- I can't believe I spoke at Sonya's funeral and helped carry her.
- What was that noise?
- It was so amazingly awesome to see some of my good friends.
- I miss my family.
- I miss my friends.
- I can't believe Sonya isn't alive anymore.
- I have to pee.

But, out of everything I thought, it ended with "Thank you God". Thank you for taking Sonya home where there's no more worries. Thank you for allowing me to experience this. Thank you for your plan for me. Thank you for everything. Thank you. What I experienced in such a short time span gave me so much personal growth. It gave me more memories and rekindled old ones. It gave me new strengths and made me think on my weaknesses. So, with Sonya's passing... she still found a way to influence my life. I love you Sonya.


  1. Wow Matt....I began reading your blog on a cheerful note, but once I read more into the third paragraph, it brought tears to my eyes and my voice to crack. I miss her dearly! I'm so very happy you were able to attend the funeral and speak about her. I'm sure she was smiling down from above. I love you and hope you are well. Take Care, Kristin

  2. Hey, Matt.

    I haven't talked to you in forever, but I wanted to thank you for writing this. It reminded me of so many things. I thought of sitting next to Sonya in Mrs. Moss's social studies class, playing basketball with you at good old WHS, and a lot of other good (and very vivid all of a sudden) memories from those days. I think about you guys from Weaver often, but I never seem to talk to you enough. I guess life gets busy, but I wanted to touch base and at least say hi. I am in North Carolina, at least for now, and I hope you are enjoying NY. Maybe I will talk to you more soon. Have fun in Matthattan!

    - Tirrell

  3. I'm sitting here going through all of your blogs because sadly haven't kept up like I should. I have read this one. Many times actually and it still brings tears to my eyes. You were such a great friend to her. To bad you didn't marry. LOL You would've been a great brother to have. I love you Matt and I hope all your dreams come true!!!