What does surviving a suicide look like?
It looks like hiding away in your basement wailing and sobbing in the middle of the day just to get the emotions out while holding onto his dirty laundry.
It looks like not being able to throw anything away because they touch or sat or used it.
It looks like driving in the car and seeing a silly sign promoting the football camp you worked so flipping hard to get him in to and loosing it. Then hearing their younger sibling ask “Mom why are you sad”.
It feels like a lifetime ago that you were happy. A complete family.
Oh but it also feels like just yesterday and you have moments that you think he will walk in the door.
It feels like the entire world is still happening and moving on as if nothing ever happened and here you are doing everything you can to just talk his name.
What does loosing your child to suicide feel like?
It feels like your soul is crushed. Every morning. Every night.
It feels like you failed at the most important thing in your life.
It feels lonely.
It feels like anger. Lots and lots and lots of anger.
It feels like one day you had the picture perfect family and the next day it was ripped from you.... because it was.
Sadly though I don’t have the power to bring him back. No one does.
So instead take 5 minutes at a time. Literally.
Make a list with your tasks (eat, shower, go to post office).
Be honest with your feelings. It’s ok to not be ok.
Find your people. You will lose friends. There will be people in your life that you thought would be there and they just simply won’t. Don’t dwell on that. Find your people. There won’t be many, but they will be there. Lean on them. Call them when you need someone.
Cry. Grieve. Be mad. Be sad. There will be days that you can’t get out of bed, and that is ok. There’ll be days where you fill every minute so therefore you don’t have to sit and cry. Then you feel bad because shouldn’t you be sitting and crying. That too is ok.
The suicide grief circle is rough. My biggest piece of advice don’t be hard on yourself. This new life that you have to live to honor them can be really hard sometimes, but then you meet someone and you touch their lives because of your child’s story and eventually the anger and tears won’t be every minute of every day.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that life is going to become normal again... I will sit here and tell you though that life becomes manageable, there will be good moments, you will laugh and you will smile.
Life after suicide is worth living.