Friday, July 19, 2013

That Could Have Been Heavy

So the Health Department and Mental Health Department sponsored a "Suicide Awareness Walk". I decided I should be supportive of my place of employment and went. The walk itself was a piece of cake - three times around the track. That made a mile. But the thoughts of why we were there started weighing me down.

There were families and groups there with matching t-shirts, some with the name of the person they were honoring or mourning or remembering. No one was sharing stories {which was a good thing overall} but it left me wondering just what their experience had been. That's when it started getting heavy in my mind, me putting together possible scenarios. And also me seeing what that person who had died had chosen to leave behind.

I knew specifically one of the people being memorialized was a grandmother. She babysat her grandchildren. She chose to end her life just before Paisley was born. I remember holding Paisley in the hospital, crying for what this grandmother would be missing and, at the same time, grateful to be blessed with something living to hold in my arms.

There's a saying, "We're all just walking each other home." I guess, in a small portion, that's what was being done during this walk. I should be more conscientious all the time, though. Everyone walking on the road I'm walking on has a story and chances are, I won't be privy to it. Just as they are not necessarily aware of my story.

But, here we are. Walking together. Trying to get home. Trying to help each other home.

I need to say - I'm not judging these people. I struggle to understand. I KNOW mental illness is real. When I say they made/make "choices", I realize there are extenuating circumstances that hide the thought processes a basically mentally healthy person uses to make choices.

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