What do you say when your 23 year old best friend asks you to write about a fundraiser bringing awareness to suicide prevention because she lost her mother to suicide three years previously? Last year, my mother died from a rare disease which “allowed” myself and my family three months to find closure before she died. I have another close friend, who is also young, who lost his mother to breast cancer almost exactly a year ago. Death is the only certainty we have in these crazy times, and although it is difficult, many of us are given the chance to say goodbye. But not for my friend Lis Crosby and her family.
Eerily, it seems like only yesterday that I received a call from our mutual friend telling me that Lis’ mother had suicided and everyone was over at Lis’ granny’s house. When I arrived, Lis and her brother were angry, lost, emotionally distraught, deeply saddened and confused. Although her mother, Nancy, had fought suicide for many, many years, the realization was more painful than ever imagined. And worse still, they were unable to have closure and they were unable to say goodbye. Questions flooded the minds of everyone around. What were her last thoughts? What made her finally make this decision? Could anyone have done anything and could it have been prevented. The reality to many of these questions will forever go unanswered, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn from this and help others in the wake of depression and suicide. Raannt made a decision last month to focus on one fundraiser or charity each month, bringing awareness to needs that might be previously unaware or resources for others that are readily available. On our main page, you will find the links to The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Also, in talking to Lis, she was extremely concerned about the impact of depression and suicide on the GBLT community, and gave me the link to GBLT information on suicide.
Every year, more than 33,000 people die from suicide in the United States and is the 11th leading cause of death in the United States of adults between the ages of 18-65. Today, someone will die in the United States from suicide every 16 minutes. An attempt will be made every minute. 90% of all people who die from suicide have a diagnosable, psychiatric illness. The statistics are even more drastic for youth, with suicide being the 3rd leading cause of death between all 15-24 year olds.
What I remember, is a vibrant woman, who cherished her children, had a quick tongue, was not afraid of strangers, loved to party and have a good time and would quickly put you in your place. She was beautiful and challenging, intellectual and hilarious. She was a true storyteller and an amazing life liver. I think about her alot on days like this, when it’s beautiful outside and trouble stirs in the air, and long for the days when my phone would ring with her on the other line…”Peter Monn…Nancy Crosby. What are we going to do about Elisabeth.” And the truth of the matter is, Lis and her brother are just fine. But they are forever without a mother. And forever without answers.
Help silence the stigma about depression and suicide. This Saturday marks the 2nd year that Team Nancy will march in The Out of the Darkness Community Walk for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. For more information on the march, or how to donate to Team Nancy, all money going to the AFSP, please see the link on our main page. If you have questions or concerns about depression or suicide, please contact a local mental health agency or see my link Thoughts From The Couch on our main page as well.
Let’s be honest folks…money makes the world go around…and a little donation is all it takes to help out the cause and possibly save a life. In dedication of Nancy Crosby, lost on 9-30-06, give a little or give a lot, or just help out a friend who needs a little comfort or understanding!
Eyes Open…We’re Watching!