I’ve been reading about the Travolta tragedy. My heart goes out to the family. Losing a child is every parent’s nightmare. While Jett is certainly in a better place, his family must somehow find the strength to continue with life. It certainly doesn’t help when people, who don’t know the family, are hyper-critical of their beliefs and parenting.
Some have been blaming John and Kelly’s belief in Scientology for Jett’s death. Why? This is certainly not the time to condemn someone’s religion. Contrary to popular belief, Scientologists do use conventional drugs when physically ill. They do seek out advice and treatment from medical doctors. Jett was on Depakote for years. But he was taken off the anticonvulsant medication after his parents had conferred with neurosurgeons. John and Kelly had faith that there was another way to help Jett. The Travoltas don’t need their religion to be criticized. They need compassion for their loss.
I don’t agree with Scientology. I admit, there are times where I don’t understand it. But everyone is entitled to their own belief structure. It’s evident that Jett had some sort of disorder. Was it Kawasaki’s Syndrome or autism? Did the Travoltas’ religion prevent Jett from getting a proper diagnosis? Who can say? But, they did have two caregivers to help take care of him. That’s not a sign of negligence.
I can’t begin to fathom the loss of a child. To have to go through it in the public eye is unimaginable.
We can analyze what happened over and over. But, it won’t soothe the Travoltas’ pain.
During the funeral scene in “Four Weddings and A Funeral”, a poem by W.H. Auden was recited by one of characters. For me, it encapsulates some of the feelings that I might have if I lost my child.
Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.
Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.
He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.
The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.
Rest in peace Jett. May angels keep you safe.