Wednesday, February 13, 2013

5 years

I am trying to muster the courage to write.  I need to get it down for myself.  For another added layer of remembering and a touch of healing.  Five years.  My sister has been gone for five whole years.

Every January 1st, I take a big breath, knowing it will be my last until February 13 passes once again.  For whatever reason, the first six weeks of the year bring a sense of dread, knowing this day is right around the corner.  I know if I can simply get to this day, then I can let out some angst and allow myself another breath.

It especially hurts this year because I am carrying a child that Kiley will never know.  She went through my pregnancies.  She went through the joy of meeting each new nephew.  But not Asher.  She will never know Asher.  My heart breaks over that, and yet I know I am blessed that she knew three of my four boys.

Suicide is a hard topic.  I know now why people don't ever talk about it.  It simply always hurts.  Albert Hsu says that "traumatic grief is a journey filled with twists and turns, unexpected detours and dead ends that force us back over ground we thought we had already covered.  Often several different, overlapping emotions may assault us at once, and we find ourselves caught in cycles of good days and bad."

Even after five years, with God lifting the mass of the burden, I see that grief is circular.  The smallest things can send us back into a depressed state.  For me, recently this was when someone approached me to pray for someone who lost his son to suicide.  While I long to pray for people who have been on this journey, it is such a sensitive subject.  One day I may be able to handle it and another day I may break down completely.  Because the truth is that even though my experience makes me very empathetic, it always sends me into a spiral of awful memories. 

I feel like God gave me an analogy of a way to describe this.  I can vividly remember when the movie "Saving Private Ryan" came out.  At the time, it was the most vivid and heart wrenching film of war that had ever graced the big screen. The movie broke my heart and I had certainly never put a single foot on the battlefield.  I remember hearing stories of War Vets getting up during the movie, sobbing, and leaving the theater.  They simply couldn't handle it.  All those years later, and they still were incapable of reliving such an experience. 

It is that way with suicide.

It is a sacred subject.  I can talk about it with family or those who walked beside me during those hard years, but my heart remains closed to others because I know they simply cannot get it.

And that is why the subject of suicide as a whole doesn't get talked about in our culture.

On a positive note, I believe sassy Kiley is with her Major-Awesome Creator right this minute.  It was grace that saved her years ago.  It was grace that carried her into the presence of Jesus that day five years ago.  She is a daughter of the King.  None of her actions could take away her identity. In Heaven, she has been healed of all depression.  She is protected from the enemy's attacks.  She is safe and is living it to the hilt with her Redeemer.

If you are or have contemplated suicide, please remember your worth.  Jesus dreamed you up, knit you together in your mother's womb, and breathed life into you.  All the days of your life are written in His book.  It is the enemy that says life isn't worth living.  Jesus died on a cross for you to tell you that life is definitely worth living.  He sees you as precious and worth more than all the money in the world.  You have tremendous value.

From the voice of one left in the quake of such a tragic decision, please, don't do it to those you love.  Anne-Grace Scheinin says that "Suicide doesn't end pain.  It only lays it on the broken shoulders of the survivors."

That statement is so true.  I assure you there are people that love you dearly that would never be the same if you chose this course of action.  In my life, there is a black thick line.  There is everything that occurred before Februar 13, 2008 and there is everything that occurred afterwards.  Because that day changed me.  It changed everything.

The American Psychiatric Association says that the "level of stress resulting from the suicide of a loved one is ranked as catastrophic--equivalent to that of a concentration camp experience."  I love the Jewish people and would never want to belittle what they endured, but my heart resonates that this quote is true.

Choose life.  For the sake of those you love, choose life.


Michelle said...

Love you Becke. Lifting you and your family up especially today.

Pam said...

Love you Becke' praying for you and your family today.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful post. From someone who has been left in just such a devastating and life-altering wake, I want to say thank you for your courage. It is uplifting and inspiring.

Kelli said...

Love you.

Bugs and Sunshine said...

Remembering sweet Kiley today. I remember when the three of us went shopping for maternity clothes. She picked out the cutest denim shirt and pink western shirt for me and it was always my spunkiest, funnest, maternity outfit. Love you friend. It breaks my heart to know you are missing your sis. You know I am praying.