Archive for September, 2014

Suicide prevention month

September is Suicide Prevention and awareness month. It is a tough month for survivors but also brings out the best. It is a time of remembrance. For me, it is a reminder to keep fighting for awareness and push to save lives. It helps me to tell my story in hopes it will help someone else. This month brought a lot of people out of their shells to tell me their stories and how I have inspired/helped them. This means more to me than I can ever put into words. I am your average survivor, who chose to speak out and make my struggle public. It means the world that my story can make a difference in someone’s life.
First was the one day where all over the country, people light candles to honor and remember their loved ones. I was at work (but still lit a candle) and asked my friends and family to do the same. My Facebook was hopping with tags of people lighting a candle for Alex. It was such a mixup of happy and sad at the same time. We were all virtually together honoring someone we loved. I felt so supported and that together, we were making a difference.

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Next up was the AFSP Out of the Darkness walk. This was my second year walking with my team “Mow’s Memory.” We had a great day for a walk. I talked with other survivors and met up with others I had met along the way before. We raised more money this year and had a great walk! It is a wonderful, yet emotional experience. I did much better this year and it was happier this year. I’m happy to work toward making a difference. I’m so grateful to everyone who donated in Alex’s name. I can’t wait to do it again next year.

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Just when I thought the month of “suicide being everywhere” was over… This happened… I was getting ready for bed when I heard my phone go off…. And this is what I saw…

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Wow… I got all the information and called 911. The police informed me that they already had police on the scene. The experience left me freaked out and shaking. Though I was not technically the one that did it, a life was saved… And for that I am thankful.
I will end by saying that no matter what… Life is worth living. Suicide does not make things better, it ends the chance of anything getting better. Reach out and get help! You will be thankful you did…

The grass is always greener…

I may have used that title before but it fits…

I don’t think it would be entirely appropriate for me to hijack someone else’s words for my blog, but I would like to summarize something I found on a “Young Widows & Widowers” page that I felt compelled to respond to.

The “rant,” as it was self-named began with frustration toward the term “single parent.” I have also had an issue with this term. The classification of “single parent” leaves you open to so many assumptions. Though I’m not sure I would like to walk saying “widowed parent.” Also, am I no longer a single parent because I am in a relationship? Really… all of this nomenclature confuses me and I would like to stick with “I’m a parent…” Anyway…

Here are the issues brought up by this fellow widow/parent…

1. She does not have the freedom other “single parents” have when their children are with the other parent. She would LOVE if she had that time.

2. Divorced parents acting like they “know what she goes through.” She feels that they are not single parents, but are “shared parenting” and do not deserve said title.

3. She did not choose to be a single parent as “the other kind of single parent” had.

Many comments followed with people agreeing and venting about how unfair it is and how much worse “we” have it than others etc. etc.

Here are my two cents….

“I agree… It is totally different and I did not sign up to do this alone. But… I did choose to have a child for better or for worse…. I wanted her no matter what life brought. And though I’m doing it alone, I’m thankful for every moment with her. It is difficult for all of us to deal with doing this on our own…. We don’t get a “break” when they go off to see their other parent like divorced parents. We have to make all decisions on our own and take on the role of both parents. Sometimes it sucks… But think about this, the divorced parent has to spend a portion of their time without their child. They CANNOT see their own child sometimes. That doesn’t happen to us. No one else has a say in what we do with our children, or how we raise them. Many of them did not choose that life either. The grass is always greener….”

In the past, someone commented on how lucky I was to not have to share my daughter. I was highly offended. However as time has passed, I realize that comment should not have been so offensive. What I have been through is terrible. I don’t wish it upon anyone. I would never choose to be widowed or wish death upon the parent of any child. However, if I can choose one major thing I am lucky for, it’s my daughter and yes, I’m lucky to not have to share her as many “single parents” do.

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