18 years ago today my older brother, Sean, took his life. It’s hard to believe it’s been 18 years. I think back on that week and I don’t remember very much, in fact I don’t remember very much before 1995. It’s almost as if my brain wiped everything away at that moment.
I do recall my parents coming into my bedroom that night sitting on the end of my bed and waking me up at 11:07pm (I vividly remember seeing my Sony digital clock next to my bed) and telling me the news. I remember my Aunt Kathy making me a sandwich that week, a funny joke Kevin M. made during his eulogy at the funeral and sitting with my friend Dave B. at the repast. That’s it.
Kevin had given a great eulogy and I had always been envious and proud of people who could hold it together during a very sad time. That same year my grandfather had died. I had written a letter to him but couldn’t read it aloud at the funeral knowing I would break so I asked my mother to.
My original plan was to write a eulogy for Sean but after writing a couple paragraphs I didn’t feel I was being authentic. The truth is I am still angry. I’m angry that he did what he did. I’m angry that he’s missing on Christmas morning as we open gifts. I’m angry that he isn’t at my 5Ks cheering for me and angry that he’ll never be there for my future children. I’m angry at the pain this has caused my family. This is why I raise money for suicide prevention/awareness because I don’t want anyone else to experience this.
I am not an angry person but deep down I’m still pissed off. How do we get past a death? Do we ever?
I wanted to give you all an update on the Out of Darkness Suicide Prevention walk that took place this past Saturday. My team did an amazing job of raising almost $1,500. Big thanks to Eileen, Kathleen, Kathy, Dennis, Melissa and Jennine for walking. Even though there was rain the sky did look beautiful. Thanks to Kathleen for the photos!!
As many of my Facebook friends know, I have been working hard to raise money for the Out of the Darkness Walk organized by the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention. Last year was the first time I had participated. It was very moving with tributes to too many kids in our area who had taken their own lives, including my brother Sean.
Unfortunately, my Uncle passed away two weeks ago and I must attend a memorial service on the same day to celebrate his life. While it is important for me to be there for my family during this time I cannot help but want to be at the walk as well.
I am so proud to say that we had organized a team of 12 (up from five last year) and created t-shirts to honor my brother. The team has also raised more money that I had expected as one of the top five fundraisers. With the help of many friends and family members I exceeded my goal of $750 as well!
I would like to thank the team: The Coyne’s, The McGackin’s, Melissa, and Janine. Thank you for raising money, wearing your shirts proudly that day and walking. I will be thinking of you all on Saturday!
Please consider donating to this great cause that educates our communities to prevent loss of our loved ones: http://afsp.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=428347
*Big thanks to Kathleen Beck for the design. Go to www.kskydesign.com for your marketing needs!
Lastly, I strongly urge my readers to become an organ donor if you are not already. People are losing loved ones because organs are not available. For more information go to: www.organdonor.gov