Friday, September 15, 2006


I have been in the printing and publishing business since I was 18 years old. 25 years, that makes it; straight out of high school. Hence, I see a word, or an error, in my peripheral vision. Just today I *fanned* through a set of pages, and found the word "Ubiquitous" spelled "ubiquitouus" on a series of pages, and marked it on a set of proofs that I had nothing to do with. Because, it is what I do. Still, forgive my my errors here; as I forgive yours. I care not but your message, yes?

I tell you this only because, 5 years ago, as I was putting clothes away in my son's room, my eyes caught words, on an IM printout on his desk, that were not mine to read. I tried to respect his privacy. I tried not to read them.

But still. I looked to the left. And to the right. Anywhere, but AT the words: He'd considered IT. IT was not worth living. He'd thought about IT. His friend argued, scolded, and chided. Don't do IT.

I finally gave in, and I read that printout.

And I promptly went straight to bed.

An anvil on my chest, I could do nothing, but go DOWN. Down, down, down, maybe I should lie on the floor, maybe I should find a parking garage, I need to be as DOWN as I can get.

And I fell, immediately, into a deep unconscious sleep, for 30 minutes. Dead to the world. I could not process this. I had to leave this.

I then woke up, and waited for my son to get home, and I didn't waste a minute. "THIS was none of my business. YES, I violated your privacy, and I apologize. But it is better for you to resent me, or HATE me, even, than for me to live knowing, that I never talked to you about IT. I know, I know, that IT crossed your mind. IT has darkened my doors before.

And you.



Do you understand me?


If you do,

I can't imagine.

That I won't.

Got it?


I talked to Brian yesterday. He'd returned my call, while I was out taking a walk. We discussed his cel phone bill. And then he told me that... final formation, at the end of the day, it was announced, by a red-eyed sargeant, that one of his friends, in his company, had taken his life that day.

My son, still reeling. He'd just been to the mall, with this guy a week or so ago, with a group. His age, he was not sure. "What's up with you?" they'd asked him. He said "nothing."


My son, 20, and in the Army, and still, I want to shield him from this. After flipping through an EMT book that we typeset in my company, just yesterday afternoon, looking at gunshot wounds, and imagining what my kid might someday see. God, I hope not. And still I want to protect MY son. From...

...his father's best friend, after PTI (Police Training Institute); hit by a car, and pressured to get back to work. Chop chop! Broken back my ass!;

...a boy I had a crush on, when I was a kid. Steve Seipult;

...and another, that I still cannot bring myself to write about here.

And I know this hurts, for some of you to read.

This Suicide, that we cannot wrap our minds around.

We are left with grieving at every Death, in our life.

But at those who take their own, we are left with Grief. And Frustation. Dammit! WHY?! and Guilt! What should I have said? Should I have paid more attention? And Anger. Fuck YOU, you didn't care enough about me to stick around? You hurt me like this? And Logic. What were you thinking? How is this better?







To Grief.

Times infinity.

And maybe, that anvil on my chest, 5 years ago, was nothing but drama. Teenage angst. A lovesick kid. A conflict with a friend.

And maybe.


I'd do it all.



and again.

I ache.


  1. Powerful post. Touched me in so many ways...


    Chad was my cousin. He took his life in April 2004. I miss him a lot.

  3. C: I am so sorry for your loss.

    I've just browsed through the website you offered, and I can see that Chads Coalition is an amazing resource for the survivors in his family to make a difference in other's life.

    Thanks so much for sharing. I commend you, and the rest of Chad's family.

  4. Thats totally upsetting when you hear about someone do something of that kind .


  5. So sad. Very nicely said.

  6. Yes, powerful. And timely for me as I go to my friend's memorial this weekend.

    How could he?

  7. Someone taking their life produces the strangest deep down hurt.

    A friend of mine from art classes killed himself at age thirty--I hadn't seen him in a while, didn't even know he was depressed. I sure wish I'd stayed in touch.

  8. Heavy is right....sad. Tragic. Maybe it wasn't an "accident" that you saw the IM message on your son's screen? Glad it turned a different way.

  9. You have a lot of courage, gnight girl, to allow your readers this insight into your soul. Thanks.

  10. This is a beautiful, painful post. I have been to too many memorial services like the one Brian faces, have asked your questions too many times.

    As I think you know, I was 12 when the doctors finally named what was going on with me: Depression. I've had it all my life. I will have it all my life. When I was a teenager, I made my friends and family a promuise ~ that I would never, EVER choose suicide. No matter how dark the episode got. No matter how alone I felt. No matter how unending the sadness seemed. My biggest fear was that I would die in what was truly an accident and my friends would be left asking those questions, thinking I had chosen suicide. It is a promise I remind people of on occasion but none of us really need me to, any longer. 24 years later, I don't need to make it.

    TTG Brian had you and whoever the friend on the other end of the IM was. So few of us are that lucky.

  11. Powerful...touching....

    beautifully said...

  12. Thank god for nosey moms.

    I did something similar to your son when I was in High School. The sudden death of my father and pressure to produce good results was getting to me. I wrote a note to my mom, citing my reasons, I now know that a was depressed. She came home early that day and found the note and flew into a panic when she couldn't find me and like you she spoke to me. I'll never forget the look fear and relief I saw in her eyes when she found me. I'm not sure to this day if I would have gone through with it if she hadn't found me but I did find out what I meant to her.

    Your son is lucky to have a strong mom like you.

  13. Thank you all for you comments.

    Amishlaw, thanks for the shot of courage.

    Boston: I love that you made a pact with your friends and family. You're clearly a strong and vibrant woman, and it's just so damned honorable (and important) for you to share with us something that can be so painful. It will make a difference, I'm sure.

    Spice: Well, bless your heart, god bless the nosey moms. I can well imagine your mother's terror; and I'm glad you made it through that rough time in your life. Your mother is lucky to have you too.


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