Chittum in 5 Stages of Grief


Ery Richardson

The Barron Perspective follows Mr. Chittum through the 5 stages of grief.

Ery Richardson, Reporter

Losing a friend is hard, but losing one of your tech guys in a high school of about 1,600 students? That’s a scar that could cause grief for a lifetime.

No one knows the true ups and downs of this heartbreak better than our very own, Mr. Chittum. The Barron Perspective offered our hand to not only help him through these saddening times but to also give him an outlet to express his emotions.

So, for this week’s SEL Training, every homeroom will be watching a video interview that we conducted with Mr. Chittum as he guides us through the five stages of grief. Below we have transcribed the video of the grief interview. 

Barron Perspective: Hello WHS Students, It’s SEL Friday…and we’re very sorry. Today we’re joined by part-time teacher, part-time Chromebook wrangler, Mr. Chittum

Mr. Chittum: Um, hi…my name is Christopher Chittum. It’s been a rough few weeks. 

BP: We know Chittum, we know. Now tell us how you’ve dealt with the first stage of this process, denial. 

MC: Well, I left the tab from his last email open. So now everytime I look at it, it kinda looks like he just sent it. It says, “Hey, can you bring that chromebook down to room D3 after lunch, I’ll be in there,” and then every day I go down there after lunch and Mr. T is just like, ”Chittum, this has to stop.” 

BP: Well moving on, how have you dealt with the anger? His reason for leaving remains unknown, and with all these rumors flying around, I’m sure you must be angry that he left without a trace. 

MC: The anger comes and goes. Yesterday, I threw a keyboard at Mr. Hein’s head. He knows I didn’t mean it. You guys know I didn’t mean it, right? 

BP: It’s ok Chittum. Sometimes a good ole’ keyboard to the head is exactly what you need to get things off your chest. 

MC: Yeah, yeah you’re right it really does help. 

BP: So the next question we have for you is- 

MC: I should have told him I loved him. 

BP: Well why is that? Do you think things might have worked out differently? 

MC: Yeah… maybe if he knew just how much I appreciated him, he wouldn’t have left me like this. I should’ve said I liked the blue… he painted the room blue, just for me. 

BP: Do you need a tissue? 

MC: Yes. *sniffles* *grabs tissue*

BP: Ok now that you’ve calmed down I just want to circle back for a moment. Do you find yourself depressed? 

MC: Yes, every day. Sometimes there are these little moments where I feel life is meaningless now and- 

BP: Ok, well that is very, very sad… moving on. Have you reached acceptance yet? Do you think you’re finally ready to let go? 

MC: Well I- I don’t know I just- you guys just told me he was leaving today, like 10 minutes ago. I think I still need some time. 

BP: Well, thank you Chittum for sharing this with us. As you can all see students, grief comes in waves. Sometimes it seems as though it’ll never end, but at some point we all reach acceptance. Any parting words? 

MC: Mr. Modeszto said he was padding his income? That’s not true, right? He would never do- 

BP: Well WHS students, that concludes our SEL training for today. We all hope you learned something valuable and that you have a wonderful rest of your day.