Saturday, June 14, 2014

Too Much

Yesterday the Huffington Post published a piece they'd invited me to write in response to a TED talk about suicide.  I decided to write about things I thought might help survivors -- not a religious post, not a post filled with pastoral reflections or exhortations - just a post about some of what I've learned, written by a mom survivor who happens to be a pastor.

Positive responses poured in.

Among them was a repost by a former teaching colleague on a memorial FB page for a former student of ours.  Unbeknownst to me, he had died of suicide two days previous.  Twenty-four years old.  What I remember is his relentless sense of humor as he failed, time and again, to turn in his work.   Jewish funerals take place within 24 hours of a death, so I missed that, but she and I will go over to the house together on Monday.

Another response came from a high school classmate, about a series of suicide-attempt related losses all those years ago.  I did not know about those events, but I recognized the emotional landscape of which she wrote.


Then, today, the wedding of our next-door neighbors' middle daughter.  I tried; I really did.  I do not want to be like the father who wrote the column a year or two ago about not having attended a wedding in the eleven years since his son died.  I want to help my friends celebrate the great events of their lives.  This was our fourth try.  We haven't made it all the way through a single reception.  Tonight's final straw came when the bride's two sisters and brother sang "Here, There, and Everywhere" to her.  Before dinner, I might add. The seven children of our combined families played together for years; both families were filled with joy and laughter.  Theirs still is.

A new friend is doing the Overnight Out of the Darkness Walk in Seattle tonight, in honor of her son who died just a year ago, on the morning of his high school graduation day.  I had toyed with the idea of going to that walk (in one of my favorite cities) - until I broke my ankle.  I wish I were there anyway.

I am completely depleted.  Whatever I wrote about finding hope, whatever courage people saw in that   piece . . .   . Not tonight.  I just want my son back. That's the only thing I ever really want.

I can't imagine how I am going to lead worship tomorrow morning.  One of these days I'm going to have to preach so far ahead of myself that I'm going to fall flat on my face.






2 comments:

  1. hugs. I hope this morning was bearable.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Maybe time to rein it in for a day or two... Rest.

    ReplyDelete