Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Joy through Darkness

This post is probably one of hundreds that will be written this week inspired by the shocking death and apparent suicide of Robin Williams.  I don't have any higher wisdom than anyone else but couldn't shake the need to say something.

When I heard the news last night, I was on my way to bed so we didn't talk much as a family about it.  There was just stunned silence in the room.  Hearing it on the radio this morning, the kids and I discussed it again on the way to school.

Noah said, "This is pretty much all we're going to hear about for a day or two, I think"

Because it is such a shock, I told him.
When you picture Robin Williams, you smile.

Robin Williams = happiness

He made so many laugh through the course of his life and it just saddens me to think of the pain he was hiding inside.  Often, it is those who bring light to others that are holding the darkest secrets.  Laughter is avoidance and it distracts from how you're really feeling.

I know because I've mastered it myself.  In this life I've been hit with many blows and yet I still stand.  The biggest, deepest, darkest of all those, of course, is losing Austin.  And time and again people comment about how strong I am, how they don't know how I manage...  But few rarely took the time to see how I really felt. Few know the true pain I've experienced.  Because few are allowed behind the veil.

Is it irony that my latest post, about losing friends amidst the pain of child loss, published today on Still Standing Magazine?  It's one of the darker pieces I've written and admit it felt like I was exposing myself -more than I'm comfortable with.  But it was truth and needed to be said.  I know others are facing this unexpected hurt during a time of greatest grief.  Maybe my post will bring awareness to one friend to reach out, even if the other party doesn't seem welcoming.

And that's really what all of this is about.  We must, as a society, remove the stigma that comes from depression.  People don't just get over things.  This world is hard.  Life is hard.  And every single one of us battles something.

In the course of your day, you probably come face to face with someone screaming on the inside for just one person to reach out.  For just one hug.  One REAL "how are you?" that truly wants an answer of more than one word.

I'm lucky.  I can't explain how I've made it through the fog, how I found joy through the darkness, other than to say that God took me by the hand and pulled me out.  In the same breath though, I know others who are just as strong in their faith and God wasn't enough.  Medicine or therapy was required.  And that's ok too.

If you're hurting....ask for help.  Reach out.  There IS someone who cares.
If you're healing...look for someone hurting.  Reach out.  There IS someone in need.

Let's love each other more.  Be kinder than necessary.  Spread JOY.


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