It is painful-not only have most of us lost at least one to it, not only is it still seen as shameful, but it's also something that many of us struggle against either in ourselves or our loved ones.
I would not be here today if I had not made a promise to a dear friend.
I would not be here today if she had not patiently poked gently at me daily, until I could stand up on my own again.
Please, keep an eye and ear on your friends. Poke them gently to keep moving forward.
And if they choose not to, please do not hold that personally.
Whenever I hear of another friend lost to the battle, another acquaintance, another friend of a friend-I catch myself on the edge of grief.
Am I sad?
Do I wish there was something I could have done?
Do I wish that it had not happened?
Am I angry that they chose to take that path, to sign out early?
I always catch myself though.
Because I know the edge of that cliff.
I know the taste of not being able to go forward.
I know the bleak, dry taste in the back of your skull as you realize that you might not be able to keep moving forward.
So I cannot be angry at them.
Because I know that struggle.
I have seen it in the mirror, I have entertained it nightly, I have courted it gently through hard week/s/months/years.
And I cannot allow grief to overtake me.
Because it brings to the forefront every single thing my brain has told me is a legitimate reason to kill myself.
I cannot dwell on the sadness, because it invites me to partake of promise of oblivion.
I will always mourn.
And remind myself that there is more beyond the dark, this is not for forever.
If you, or one of your loved ones is struggling, please reach out. Please know that there are people out here who care and want to help. Please, hang on.
1 (866) 781-8010 Web: http://couragebeyond.org/
Consultant Line: 1(800) 342-9647 Web: www.militaryonesource.mil
Military Crisis Line: 1(800) 273-TALK (8255)
NATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION LIFELINE
1 (800) 273-TALK (8255) Web: www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org
NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOTLINE
1(800) 799-SAFE (7233) Web: www.thehotline.org
NATIONAL SEXUAL ASSAULT HOTLINE
1 (800) 656-HOPE (4673) Web: www.rainn.org
NATIONAL CHILD ABUSE HOTLINE
1 (800) 4-A-CHILD (422-4453) Web: www.childhelp.org
NATIONAL CENTER FOR MISSING AND EXPLOITED CHILDREN
1 (800) THE-LOST (843-5678) Web: www.missingkids.com
Note: Many of these have options for those with communication
needs such as Español only or hearing impaired. Check the organization’s website for details.