Posted: Saturday, November 26, 2011 8:05:34 PM
The early September wind skipped playfully through the trees, stealing leaves off their boughs too early for the season, but perfect for a childhood memory. Childhood memories were becoming quick and fleeting for me then as I was growing up, becoming a teenager and young adult, but I was holding on to the little bit of childhood I had left. Little did I know that, that last bit was about to be torn from me.
My mom and I were on our way to a family reunion, a few hours drive up to Tahoe to meet a whole bunch of strangers that we supposedly shared blood with. I was pretty excited about learning about where I came from. I was overloading my mom with questions on the drive. “Who's that? How did you meet?”
Disappointment spread through me changing my mood instantly to that of a spoiled child, when she picked up her phone, interrupting our talk time. I slumped against the window, pressing my face to the cool glass and soaking up the sun's rays, while I toned out her voice, filling my head instead with angry thoughts of her ignoring me as any preteen or teenager might do.
Her hand touched my shoulder, gently waking me from the sleep I'd fallen into. Her words tumbled like the water of a waterfall, confusing me at first.
"Deb's son killed himself."
My stepbrother? Heron was dead? No, no...how could this be? There went my last little bit of childhood along with my brother, taken when he tied the belt around his neck, vanishing with the light from his eyes.
Suicide. Its a word we hear so easily tossed around in fiction and faraway news stories, hardly one that touches our own lives. We often pretend it doesn’t exist, that nobody we know would be so depressed as to take their own life. We think that we could prevent it if we thought someone would, that we could play superhero. When it comes to the moment where we actually need to be a superhero though, many of us would turn a blind eye.
Sure some organizations such as Trevor Project and the National Organization for People of Color Against Suicide, are great at reaching out, helping those in need. But it is not enough. Often these sort of organizations center around one particular group such as gay teens or African American teens, or people over 50, there aren’t many all encompassing groups which get enough attention to really do any help. Suicide Prevention deserves its own month, it should really deserve attention the entire year. Through out a single month however, we could raise support, awareness, and funds for different suicide prevention organizations and for those people in need of help.
Suicide destroys lives the same as cancer, child abuse and every other cause in the book. Give it a month, give it the time it deserves and we can stop it. Don’t let another person die.