ANOTHER ANNIVERSARY PASSES
Last year, I was too busy to acknowledge this day, yet it was not forgotten. It was a day six years ago that was one of those life altering events, probably the most traumatic, I can remember experiencing. Today, even after six years, it still brings tears to my eyes, and the forever question “Why?”
Six years ago, my son in law, David, took his own life. Why is always going to be a question that will never be answered. The hardest part, of course, is always wondering what we missed, what we might have done, why did it have to happen.
Suicide is something I believe that stays with those left behind forever. It changes everyone’s life who is touched by this tragedy. It leaves deep and long-lasting scars.
I remember as a kid a neighbor killed himself, and to this day I still wonder what became of the family. It was right across the street, within a 100 yards of where I lay sleeping, and yet no one heard a thing. Neighborhoods were close-knit back then. Everyone knew everyone and their business, yet we did not really know this man, just his wife and kids, and the memory of waking up to police, crowds of neighbors, and yellow tape around the garage where it happened still are fresh in my mind.
Just like hearing about David is still fresh in my mind. I think of that moment every time I drive through the area I was driving that day when I heard it from my son on my cell phone. It’s a wonder I didn’t have an accident. It was a moment when my heart and breathing stopped momentarily. It was the Thursday before Good Friday that year.
The days following were a painful blur to all of us. Arrangements had to be made, and that Sunday was Easter. It was the rare year when the weather that Easter was hot, humid, and sunny, and yet it was not enjoyed. I shunned my family’s get together. I could not face them with my emotions. And his children needed to be told and their questions answered.
Today, while the sadness is still there, there are also moments of anger at this selfish act. Is it ever that bad that one more day can make it worse? Is it so hopeless you cannot look into your sons’ eyes and see hope?
I don’t expect to ever understand, but hopefully will always remember to acknowledge this day even in some small way.