Good Morning, sweet Sunday. I attended the International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day. I did not know what to expect. Again, it is my first time attending. I meditated in the morning and set an intention of connecting with one soul who would “get me”. This conference was approved and made official by our government. This one day, forever will be recognized globally, internationally. I, am a survivor now. It is also simulcaste on the internet. AFSP, is speaking. It is reaching millions. It recognizes our loved ones and most importantly does good work for the prevention of suicide. A lovely lunch, followed by a montage of photo’s, (many many, tears) and a video of families who have suffered this loss and share their journey & healing. We then disperse into break out groups, parents, siblings, spouses and share our stories. Heart wrenching? Yes, but the energy and the LOVE that was shared safely in our group was truly a healing, enlightening experience. I indeed connected. I met a mother who lost her son in May. A beautiful, loving, strong woman. She shared her son was 25, loving, alive, giving soul & wonderful man who suicided unexpectedly. I hear that often. No signs, no past mental illness. She asked me if there were signs prior to my brother’s suicide. I told her not really. He had never been treated, diagnosed, never attempted. I also shared. My brother did not tell one living soul of his plan or thoughts. He hid his pain and suffering from everyone. That is who Thomas was, a giver, a survivor, strong. I did tell her, he was fighting this inner demon for months, he looked sickly, very quiet and distant. Knowing him, he was doing everything he could to escape it. The video started and from the first picture, there were many tears. Thomas’s picture appeared and my heart just breaks. That moment of reality, it cuts deeply. Everyone shared, the pain, feelings, history. The common thread…..above all, was the LOVE in that room was life changing. Every person in our circle shared their heart and worries. It was good work, it was bittersweet, yes, but truly this how the healing begins. Together.
I can’t begin to share the loss within. If you ever suffered a sudden or tragic loss, you get me. You don’t get “over” it. Ever. You certainly must learn to accept and live within it. Without them here. I am learning to do that everyday now. I could go on & on about missing his smile, his voice, his laughter and silliness. I do, every single day. I felt this conference sheds light to a dark death, a scary uncomfortable subject to discuss. It certainly allowed me to honor him, to say his name over & over again and remember him. That means the world to me. There is much work to be done with the stigma of Suicide. The truth is 41,000 people will die this year, more than last year. The world is listening and understanding the importance of prevention and support. I hope you do too.
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is speaking. Please listen & if you care YOU can help spread the message. I wish you all a lovingly, peaceful day. <3