I told you guy’s that I would write about a little bit about the stages of grief from loosing someone by suicide. It carries a different process and set of emotions with it that is different than someone just passing. It doesn’t mean this holds more or less significance but it carries emotions and feelings that I feel most people would have a hard time understanding.
It is sudden
It is final
It is ugly.
It is confusing..
A N G E R
When anger set in for me I also felt guilt. I woke up on the day of Christophers funeral, November 12th, I was so angry. My anger came from a place of love, because I was so angry that he was GONE. Continuing to ask myself “why?” ” Did I not do enough?” I asked myself many questions. I asked the what if’s. I disected everything as much as I could to try and understand why it was I was angry, the anger didn’t feel right. I felt like it was awful to HIM for me to be angry, because I was not the one who felt like I had to take my own life right? He did, so he deserved grace and understanding.
Then… I let myself just be angry because I knew where it was coming from. I knew that if I had the chance to see him again, just one more time I would’ve told him to hold my hand and that we would get him through it, TOGETHER. But, as I have said he had checked out. I watched the light in his eyes diminish for 6 days. I was also angry because he CHOSE to go missing the Sunday before he took his life. I was SO angry, worried, lost, confused.. At that time I had thought he was dead. I thought he got in an accident on his way home from the valley and I was a wreck. We found him and I knew immediately that he had checked out, mentally. He didn’t want to show his face because I had gotten everyone involved in finding him and that was the only thing he had said to me for days, “I never want to show my face again”. I will never fully know what happened that night he went missing.. maybe I don’t want to know. I was angry.
He left us all with so many questions and unfortunately those will never be answered. I just had to learn to stop trying to make sense of something that was just never going to make sense. I had to ride out the anger and when I did.. I then just had to remind myself that what I continue to feel is all validated and OKAY! I was angry that he took his life in OUR home. I was angry because he knew that not a single person would have come over to check on me or him besides my best friend next door and even then a part of me felt like he knew that I would be ok because I had her. I was angry that he knew I would come home and see him that way. I was angry that he left the door to our garage wide open for me to see when I turned that corner. I was SO angry that I could not sleep for days, I could not be alone, I could not shower alone, change alone, go to the bathroom alone. Anytime I had to get anything from the house I needed company and I always felt scared to be inside. I was angry that for weeks on end I was not able to sleep without someone sleeping with me and lights on and tv on. I couldn’t eat, I lost weight quickly. I was angry that it felt like my whole world was turned upside down, but somehow, I knew I would be ok. I was learning how to navigate all of that while grieving his absence. I was so angry. I just wanted him back, I wanted a do over, I wanted to save him.
G U I L T
This one.. this one hit me hard and it still does to this very day.
Friday morning, October 16th I woke up feeling defeated. I had felt so stepped on, not appreciated for having just spent 24 hours the Sunday before looking for my person only to find out he chose not to find a phone to call someone.. I thought he was dead somewhere. I woke up that Friday morning after he had completely checked out and given up. He didn’t move from the couch for 6 days, he didn’t shower, he didn’t change his clothes, he didn’t brush his teeth, he did nothing but watch tv. Every day I left for work I sat right next to him and said, “I love you, I am here for you, we can get through this.” and everyday he never looked at me and just told me to leave him alone. I was pushed away second by second, sleeping in our bed by myself, I was fed up come Friday morning. I had found his goodbye letter on the top of our closet on his side and I took it, I went next door and I called non emergency and I tried to get someone to come get him or at least come check on him. I had proof that he wanted to take his life and I thought that was enough… but no one came. I reached out to teen challenge, the program he had graduated from. No one came. Even when I read his letter I still didn’t think he would do this.. I never really put myself in the mindset that he must of been in to make such a final decision. Only one person came the night before that Friday and it was his best friend, I thought the conversation went well. But, Chris was still checked out. I even asked him how it went and he said ” It was good, but it didn’t change anything” then he just went back to not looking at me and telling me to leave him alone. I still have this idea in my head that he pushed everyone away because he had already made up his mind about what he was going to do and he didn’t want to change his mind. Whatever it was that caught up to him so much so that he felt the need to leave this earth. To leave his sweet baby boy, to leave another boy who loved him dearly, to leave the person he wanted to marry. To leave his family and friends. He had so many people in his corner, people who truly cared about him and knew what he struggled with mentally.
The guilt set in for multiple different reasons. That day I left to walmart and then work. On my way to work from walmart I had this insane urge to go home.. it felt like a pull, it was an intense battle with MYSELF and I almost took a left turn to go home and instead I took a right, I went to work and got it done in less than an hour so I could hurry home but I didn’t know why. My gut was eating at me. I got home and my life changed forever. The man I loved SO hard was just gone. He had my love letter I wrote him earlier that week sitting next to his second goodbye letter on our coffee table and our brand new puppy in her kennel. I felt guilty that I did not come home in enough time. I was guilty that I didn’t stay home with him, why did I leave? I felt guilty that I didn’t fight harder even though to me it felt like I was fighting as hard as I could to bring him back to a place where he could feel possibility again. That he could get better. I felt guilty for not recognizing more of what he was saying or feeling, but I did. After he left this earth it was like puzzle pieces came together and things made sense. I felt guilty for so much and I just wish I had the chance to tell him ONE MORE TIME how much I loved him and how I would’ve gone to hell and back to support him with every ounce of my being. He meant the world to me, anyone who knew our relationship knew it wasn’t easy but that I loved that man with my entire soul. I fought for US every single day. I did everything I could to make that man feel special, loved, and cherished. He deserved it, he deserved to feel whole again after such a hard life prior to meeting me. I took his broken pieces and I loved them with all of me, I never once judged him for his mistakes or used them against him. We didn’t struggle or have the hard times we did because he didn’t love me…he had such a hard life with addiction and he never felt good enough for me and Rylan. He always felt like we were better off, and I tried to hug those broken pieces and the doubts he had within himself. He still deserves that, I will forever honor him, Cherish him and share his beautiful life in all of its rawness.
I know for some people this may be hard to read, I know this isn’t ideal to share, I know some might not understand why I choose to share such details or the story at all. I recently read a book called ” FEAR GONE WILD” and this book is a whole story written from a wife who lost her preacher husband to suicide. She shares some dark details, some unsettling pieces of their life and his life during his depressed and lost state of mind, her life after, the messy process after loosing someone to suicide.
We can’t just sit here and only talk about mental health or suicide and how big it is and then just stop there. We all know how serious this is. We all know that mental health is not only important but that in the last year alone that more people have died by suicide than ever before. The rates are only rising and it makes me feel like I want to scoop up all those people who feel so unworthy of life and remind them that their life here has purpose and that they CAN get through this. I want so badly to snap my fingers and take away that pain, because from experience in MY personal life I know what it feels like to have those thoughts room your mind. I have been there, a few times. I CHOOSE to share this story and part of my life because it HAS to be shared. More people need to be more comfortable sharing those broken pieces and asking for help or accepting it when it is offered. I have had many people reach out to me a little bit after Chris left this earth expressing their gratitude for how I share, asking for prayer because they are or a family member is experiencing a similar situation. We got a phone call from our landlord that day saying that our phone call about what happened might of saved her teenage daughters life that day… to me, that only makes me want to share more. Why? because if telling this story can change someones life or save someones life then I will tell it until I’m blue in the face. This is why I write, this is why I share and I am so vulnerable.
I love you all,