From Death to Healing
The following two articles were written by a mother whose son had committed suicide.
The first was written over thirty years ago, shortly after her son took his life.
She wrote the first on the advice of her counselor at the time, to help her heal from this horrific event in her and her husband’s life.
The second she wrote just a short time ago.
It was interesting to see how her perspective did or did not change over the last thirty years.
Guest Blog By Carole France
“My dearest John,
I miss you.
I long to hear your voice and to share days, hours or even minutes with you.
The love I have for you is still in my heart and I am unable to express it to any other human being.
It is yours alone.
When you were born your dad was so happy that he had a son.
He announced that he had a fishing buddy.
You would carry on his name.
I will always treasure the night that you and I spent together when you were a tiny baby.
You brought me joy your entire life from just being you.
You were intelligent, handsome, fun, funny, interested in learning, deep, complicated, challenging, caring, cautions, sometimes fearful, yet you were also brave and independent.
Little did I know how unprepared I was to raise you children and I know I made mistakes that hurt you.
I know the anger and frustration I saw in you as a teenager was really the disappointment you felt over not having the close family you desired.
All that anger in you worried me.
What you needed was our love, support, time, understanding, patience, and guidance.
You needed us to tell you that God knows and loves you beyond any happening ever in life.
He made you, understands you, and is committed to you – regardless of your struggles.
Instead, though, your dad and I lectured to try and get you to do what we wanted you to do.
I want you to know how sorry I am that you missed out on the love and nurturing that you deserved.
My heart will ache always for what I was not able to give you.
You were dealing with painful emotions and circumstances beyond what a teen should have to face.
They obviously consumed you and you felt powerless to fix it.
I wish I could have explained to you that life is like a book… each chapter is different from the other.
When your young and troubled it may seem like the chapter you are experiencing is the only one and that nothing will ever change.
The truth is that 1,3,5 years down the road our relationships, circumstance, and events are all different.
Of course, we always have stress in our lives, but you would have had more life experiences, more answers of your own from which to draw, and more people in your life to help support you when you asked.
John, when you made the choice to end your own life, I blamed myself, but I will not accept that responsibility anymore.
Even though I will forever feel badly about what you did, it was you who made the choice to kill yourself.
There are so many other choices you could have made, and I know we could have gotten through it together.
But I understand that on that day it was just too much.
You took yourself away from everyone who loves you.
Your decision brought deep and lasting pain to many, many people.
If you were here today all our lives would be more complete.
We would still have problems to deal with, but we would face them together.
I can’t help but wonder who you would have grown up to be, who you would have married and what the voices of your children would have sounded like calling me “Grandma”.
I will always wish that you would have talked to me and asked for my opinion on your leaving.
I would have begged and pleaded with you to stay!
I truly and fully love and miss you and I want you to be here,
A portrait of John from his high school yearbook.
Thirty Years Later
“A few weeks ago, I was asked to write a follow-up some thirty years later to my message expressed to my son John shortly after his death.
Since we as a family talk about John often I wasn’t prepared for the return of painful emotions this would bring.
My thoughts and feelings held the same raw loss and loneliness experienced those first hours, days, months and years so long ago.
The difference this time was that I knew what to do.
After years of crying out to my Savior, Jesus, I realized He had taught me to go to His word for honesty, truth, comfort, and the healing He has offered me over these years.
Has it been easy?
But it has been REAL!
It has been the most helpful help offered in navigating the intense grief and emptiness in losing one’s precious child in such a horrific way.
I’ve learned that God really is Who He says He is and that He makes good on all His promises made in His Bible.”
From Death to Healing
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