I know a lot of people perceive me as being strong and positive as I grieve the loss of Shawn, but do not let these words fool you. Do not let this smile fool you. I have dark moments and sad, sad days. Negative thoughts and feelings do creep into my mind, as much as I do not want them to. In the aftermath of suicide, maybe it’s impossible for them not to. I often ask Shawn, “Why wasn’t our love enough? Why wasn’t the thought of our future together enough? Why wasn’t I enough?”
This past weekend, I was experiencing one of those difficult moments. Shawn had always given me a Mother’s Day card from our dog, Gracie, and little gifts and I SO missed that this year. I then began looking through the old cards and notes he had written to me. I never realized it as much prior to this, but Shawn often referred to me as being a light in his life. “You make my days brighter.” “You are our sunshine.” “You are the light of my life.” “Your positive attitude is infectious and brings much needed sunshine to our home.”
That’s when I started thinking about the treatment of mental health. There is no simple, one size fits all treatment to a mental health condition. I have heard of many individuals who went to the best hospitals, saw the greatest doctors and therapists, tried a variety of medications and their end result was the same–suicide. Maybe we, as survivors of suicide loss, can start to view ourselves as a ‘form of treatment’ to those we lost. A light when they battled darkness. Perhaps we were the reason they lived for one more year, one more month, one more day, one more hour, one more minute. Unfortunately for us, no matter how great a treatment can be, sometimes the disease just wins. Death just wins. I’m not sure if this thought makes me feel better, but it does provide a different, slightly more positive perspective in regards to our involvement as a survivor.
I think we all, as human beings, can try a bit harder each day to be the light during someone else’s darkness. Be kind.