I’m going to try not to ramble, but I can’t promise that I won’t. We just got some devastating news: a young friend of ours committed suicide. We have no details at this point. I was hesitant to write anything so soon; however, I have these feelings that are bouncing around in my soul and I must get them out.
I won’t name any names here, because I want to respect the privacy of our friend’s family. For those of you who read my musings, you can tell that I’m a person of faith. I don’t write with too much of an evangelical bent, and I do that intentionally. I am however an active member in my church and the natural extension (through service) from those four walls that define my faith community. Our friend was a member of that community, too.
I can hear the questions already from many. I’m asking them myself: Why would he do this? He had it all together. He was a preacher; he was well educated; he had a well-paying professional job; he had a network of friends that obviously loved him; he was a person who served his community; he had a lovely family, nuclear and extended. Yes. He had it altogether, but did he? Something was amiss somewhere. I can’t help but wonder if someone saw something but was too afraid to approach our beloved friend.
I’m trying my best to not appear to be selfish. When someone dies from some reason other than suicide, we naturally think about ourselves and how much we’re going to miss them. In this case, it’s important to know, if possible, what led our friend to commit such an irreversible act. It’s important to be available to the lovely wife and children who have been left behind. They will have to deal with this tragedy of death, not by natural causes, not by accident, but by the hands of their loved one. This is the first time I’ve had someone in my network commit suicide; something tells me that this will be a unique grieving experience for our friend’s family.
Please pardon me; however, I redundantly proclaim that I’m trying my best to not be selfish. It’s hard for me to do so. This has been a rough end of the year (from October until now). I’ve lost several people who meant a lot to me. I often wonder why this happens during this time of year, when we want to mark the times with festivities, not visits by the grim reaper.
I can’t help but wonder if our friend felt the love that, by my observation, that many had for him. Our faith community and the community at-large has lost a lovely person. One can’t help but wonder what will go undone, as the result of our friend’s passing.
And so, I’ve taken several minutes to jot down a few thoughts about our friend. I don’t feel any better. I have more thoughts; however, I think I’ll leave it here.
You never know, and you never will by looking at the outside only.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.