Some of you may know or heard of my sister and nephew passing away last year. My sister’s death from breast cancer at the age of 52 was still surprising and a shock as I thought she had made a full recovery. Nine months after my sister’s death, her son/my nephew’s suicide or overdose on Christmas was really a big shock. It was the most devastating news I have ever gotten. He had just turned 20 years old and had such great future ahead of him. I don’t think at this point in my life I ever thought that most of my family would be in Heaven so soon.
So as I struggle with all of the unanswered questions there are many things that happened. The spring of 2011 I started to have a really bad feeling about my nephew and this started to grow into the summer and the fall. I spent a lot of time reaching out to him but it became more and more difficult. I tried repeatedly to enlist other friends and neighbors and even family members. But for some reason my concerns were not taken as urgent enough or people did not realize how this situation was getting worse. Or maybe they thought I was over reacting. I just never thought my bad feelings about my nephew would manifest into him dying.
Now many days as I walk down the street, I think of what has happened and it all feels so surreal. I want answers but can never really get them. I have painful days of loss and sadness and I pray to my deceased family members and ask them for guidance.
Sometimes I like to imagine that my family members are still alive and that they are sitting with me enjoying life again. They are with me at The Comedy Store or at the grocery store or even seeing a movie with me. I imagine that they are really enjoying us all being together and doing something fun again.
I have also encountered several things I did not expect with the death of my sister and my nephew. That certain friends have stepped back or away from me. Are my family’s recent deaths the part that creeps them out about my really bad news? No one likes to think about death. It is a real drag because it’s well…bad news. The only time I had experienced this before is when I had cancer at the age of 23 and friends would not visit me at the hospital.
When I heard the news of my nephew’s death. I wanted to go away and hide, but I couldn’t. I had and have too many obligations so I just went forward robotically. It’s been tough because as much as I wanted to hide I knew I had to go on.
Each day has different degrees of sadness and depression for me. I feel some of the clouds lifting but then some nights as I lay awake I try to figure it all out. I wonder what went wrong so fast and if I had more support and help could I have saved my nephew.
Suicide is always looked upon as shameful or bad. I don’t think of it that way. I sometimes try to imagine the days leading up to my nephew’s death. Wondering just how much pain and sadness he must have been in. He must have really felt alone and how he lost his whole world when his Mom died. My nephew acted like everything was okay but unfortunately he really wasn’t okay. I have to remember all of the good times when he was here and accept the loss of him at such a young age.