I know this is not a usual entry from me, but It's what was on my mind and my heart.
I am very sad this evening, the last one of a beautiful September. Another young man has chosen a permanent way out of a temporary situation. I know his family. His sister goes to our church. His dad is a cousin of a dear friend of mine. I met this man and his parents and two sisters at another church my son and I attended.
A few months ago, our town lost a professional man who also chose the same way to deal with a few problems. One of the young mothers at church had worked for him for a long time. No one saw the signs that he was depressed.
Right after the first of the year, we received a call that a son of a lady in our area had a son die. This mother had been in the church we were a part of near our home. My dear friend and I really didn’t know what happened until we attended the memorial service. He had a substance abuse problem that caused his heart to stop.
Each of these three men was reasonably young, in their 40’s. When I saw the one who left us this past January, he was cordial and spoke to me. This was one recent summer. He called me by name and I had to tell him, “I’m sorry, I don’t recognize you.” When he told me his name, I felt so silly. We talked a while. I asked where he was living. He was living down the street from his mother. The summer before he died, I took some of our tomatoes to his mother, at that time, he and one of his brothers lived with her.
My heart aches for these men and for their families. Parents should not have to bury their children. Each of these three men left children. Their actions may leave scars on the hearts of those children. Each of these sets of children will continue their lives without the fellowship and the wisdom of their fathers.
A lot of people are not trained to recognize the signs of depression. But we need to read and study what we can to learn to be able to spot that a person isn’t acting as they would normally. Our society needs to learn the art of listening.
Sometimes, all we can do is pray for the families who go through this horrible loss.