Twenty-three years ago today one of my closest friends committed suicide. We were fifteen years old. It was the day that my family and I moved from Florida back to Connecticut. In other words, the day that I left her. Try dealing with that as a fifteen year old. Recently in a casual conversation someone was commenting on how difficult it is to be an adult and how in comparison their teenage problems seem so minimal...mine weren't. I think about Janine all the time. She only lived on this earth for 15 years, but she lives in my memories still 23 years later. After her death I had thought of writing a book about her and our friendship. We only knew each other for nine months, but she affected me in a profound way. I was just telling Jonathan and Madison about her today (something that was hard to do because as a parent you don't even want your kids to know that that kind of thing happens...Janine was only 2 years older than Jonathan is now). She was hurting and unhappy, but when she took her own life, she left her friends and family to deal with a hurt and unhappiness that was never going to go away. Janine died long before the internet and modern life as we know it, but just by chance I tried to do a google search of her name today...nothing. That made me sad, it seems like there should be something out there to memorialize a young girl who meant so much to me.
Last night the man who lives upstairs from my brother and his family took his own life. Rob, Kim and the boys were evactuated from their home which was surrounded for hours by the police, and Kim didn't even have her shoes on or her pocketbook. They only had the clothes on their backs, and they had to go sleep at our cousins' house. Rob was on the Connecticut news last night. Today when they went back to survey the situation...all the windows were blown out of their home and all of their stuff was sprayed with tear gas. They didn't have renter's insurance and they aren't sure where to go from here. They live in a quiet, safe, small town and the police don't usually have a lot going on, apparently, they used excessive measures in their treatment of the situation. Rob, Kim, Zack and John need our prayers.
This feels a little like on of those "tag you're it" kind of blogs..."23 years ago... last night..." But these are the things that are crowding my mind today. I don't feel like I've given either point in my story the justice it deserves.
And if Jake has said "Mom" once today, he has said it 1,000 times! I probably should give him some attention. So I'm going to have to end here.