By Karen Kosman
The pain of suicide is like a jigsaw puzzle. No matter how we try, we cannot make the pieces fit together. Suicide is not the final solution. It only leaves a painful aftermath for the ones who love you. For that reason I share a portion of the letter I wrote to my son who died of suicide at the age of 23.
Each year on your birthday, I stop and ponder what you may have become. What wonderful accomplishments you would have achieved if you’d chosen to stay. I wonder if you would have married and how many grandchildren you’d have given me. I’ll never know—you went away too soon. I miss your hugs. You always seemed to know when I needed one. I miss your smile; it always brightened my day.
I felt a lot of anger when you left. It’s hard not knowing why you chose to leave. God impressed on my heart that I could be bitter, feel guilty, and show anger, or I could let go of those emotions—not with my own strength, but with His.
I love you, Robbie, which will never change. But when I stand at your grave site, I can’t put my arms around you anymore. I have so many sweet memories, but I don’t have you anymore. At holidays and special moments with family, there is always an empty chair.
I am sharing your life and death with others in hopes that it prevents someone else’s son or daughter, mom or dad, or friend or relative from dying by suicide.
I know, if you could, you’d tell people that no matter how difficult life seems, it will get better. You always learned through trial and error. Robbie, your life had purpose, and I know that your suicide was your ultimate act of impulsiveness—but at what cost…
For the suicidal individual who wants only to escape pain—there is hope. There are people who care, who have walked on the edge, but overcame. We want you live; to have a future. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Or dial 211 for help in locating essential community services, such as mental health services. The final solution is choosing to live and getting help.
Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:28-31
This blog post is an excerpt from Too Soon to Say Goodbye: Healing and Hope for Suicide Victims and Survivors and is used with permission by New Hope Publishers.
The following is the true story of Kellie Borden, who is glad she survived to realize suicide is not the final solution.