“It is a curious thing, the death of a loved one. We all know that our time in this world is limited, and that eventually all of us will end up underneath some sheet, never to wake up. And yet it is always a surprise when it happens to someone we know. It is like walking up the stairs to your bedroom in the dark, and thinking there is one more stair than there is. Your foot falls down, through the air, and there is a sickly moment of dark surprise as you try and readjust the way you thought of things.”
It was but six months ago that me and my family opened our eyes to the dark surprise awaiting us. My cousin, Scoob (Scott Bouchard) made the decision to end his own life last September, just a few days after my birthday. My birthday is always a time of rebirth for me, and this past year, it was a rebirth into a family that looked completely different than the year before. In just 12 months, we lost a shockingly large number of our family members, and the world as we knew it was completely different. Losing Scott turned us all upside-down as we searched for answers as to why. Why would a young, handsome, intelligent, funny, inspiring, loving, kind, and generous man who was loved by many, choose to end his life on this earth, surrounded by his family and friends. We will never know all of the answers – nobody will – nobody but him.
I suspect, if the experience after one dies is anything like I have heard in the books, the movies, and the many spiritual teachings I’ve ventured to read, Scooby now knows how much he was loved, even if he wasn’t able to comprehend it during his time here. With that understanding, I truly believe that he would want us, all of us sisters, brothers, cousins, aunts, uncles, friends, to get out there and MAKE SURE that others like him know that they are loved. He never hesitated to fire off a quick "I love ya" and sometimes something so seemingly little can matter so much. He would want us to make no secret about it. “Hey -- YOU -- I care about you. I love you!”
So we are.
At the end of this month, my family will be participating in a fundraiser to help us do just that - Spread the love. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is at the forefront of research, advocacy, education and prevention initiatives designed to reduce loss of life from suicide. With more than 38,000 lives lost each year in the U.S. and over one million worldwide, the importance of AFSP's mission has never been greater, nor our work more urgent.
I hope you will consider supporting my participation in this event. Any contribution will help the work of AFSP, and all donations are 100% tax deductible.
Donating online is safe and easy- click here to access my fundraising page - and click the "Donate Now" button on that page. If you would rather donate by check please make the check payable to AFSP and mail it in with the offline donation form here.
Thank you for taking your time to read this, and please, consider donating to help spread the love in our communities.