Taking Pen In Hand: Writing & Seeking Solace
You have heard of the expressions, "You drive yourself crazy" and "Don't drive yourself crazy." When you have lost a loved one to suicide, as I have, your mind becomes uncontrollably overwhelmed. I was an expert, a grand master, at driving myself crazy - wandering in the present but lost in the past.
I was living in a world of mental turmoil and torture, suffering in silence, as I sought answers to questions that could never be answered and how I could have saved the woman I loved from the deadly fate she sought.
I was on a cycle of mental frenzy and overload, a roundabout and loss in search of an exit, an escape. Then one day I decided to start a journal, to write down what I was going through - being brutally honest about the devastating conflicts, the turmoil and torture and the heartbreak within me.
In time, as I saw my thoughts and feeling written on the page, I was able to recognize when my mind was about …
What Was I Thinking?
What was I thinking after all that I have lived through? When I was 11 years old, my grandfather, my best friend and hero, killed himself. I rained tears of sadness and sorrow. Twelve years later my girlfriend kissed me and whispered, "Tom, I love you." The next day she killed herself. I rained tears of sadness and sorrow.
Since then I have lost childhood friends, former classmates, neighbors and acquaintances to suicide. And I have seen their families, with broken hearts and shattered souls, rain tears of sadness and sorrow.
Yet with all my experiences of knowing the damaging and devastating effects suicide has on loved ones, decades ago I lost all desire to live and made a serious attempt to kill myself. I ended up in ICU, in a coma and on life support. My family rained tearsd of sadness and sorrow.
What was I thinking? The simple answer is, I wasn't - I just wanted to die. The most difficult answer is, leading up to my attempt I never once though…
Suicide: An Everlasting Heartbreak
From the day I was born until I was almost 12 years old, I saw George Frawley almost every day - I lived just around the corner. George was a rough and tough man, confident and fearless - as Irish as a pint of Guinness. As a young man, he was an excellent boxer, well known in the Boston area.
He was a bookie. He was married and had two married daughters. By the time I was 5 years old, I was is partner and sidekick. We went to ballgames, horse races and boxing matches - and spent time in many Boston barrooms. He attended all of my little baseball and basketball games.
Every Friday night I stayed overnight at his house. We got pizza and watched TV and the Friday Night Fights. On Saturday mornings, we went out to breakfast. Almost every day, he challenged me to spell a new word. I was a magical and memorable time.
Decades ago, on an early September morning, I told him that I would see him after school - and he said that he would see me later. 
When I g…
How Do You Feel, When....
A few weeks have passed, maybe a month, since a loved one died of suicide. And you are going about your daily routine  -  and you meet a few acquaintances here and there. They express their sincere condolences. 
Then ask, "How did he kill himself?"  "Did she leave a note?"  "What did it say?"
How do you feel, when these questions are asked? How do you do you feel?

My response to these type of questions is:  Why do you need to know?

Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare
When you have lost a loved one to suicide, you spend weeks, months, even years - sleepwalking through a nightmare. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, your mind is elsewhere - back to the day you received the tragic news and its mournful grief.
At other times, your mind wanders to days in the future when birthdays and holidays are not days of celebration but days to be endured - as we continue sleepwalking through a nightmare.
We encounter friends, acquaintances, as we go about our daily routines - we hear their voices but not their words. Often we do errands, going to the supermarket, pharmacy, library and post office - then have no recollection of doing so. Why? Because we are lost in thought, troubling thoughts of a past we cannot change but cannot escape, accept.
Our hearts, bodies and souls are broken, we ache with pain. We are held prisoner by our minds and thoughts as we suffer mostly in silence. In time our grief will lessen but it will …
If Only, If Only...
If only, if only...two simple words. But if you have lost a loved one to suicide, those two words, "if only" - are a turbulent tornado that torture us and torment us relentlessly and endlessly.
If only he talked to me, if only she called me, if only I stayed home, if only I called to say hello, if only I invited her out to lunch, if only I stopped by his apartment.
If only, if only...two words that leave us trapped to a past we cannot change and cannot escape. Every death needs someone to blame and those two words, if only, eventually lead us to find fault within ourselves and to blame ourselves. But it is not our fault, we are not to blame. There is no fault, no blame.
Suicide is death by sadness - caused by the dark demons of depression and despair. And after these demons create endless battles within the mind, a person becomes detached from life - and suicide become a sanctuary from the pain and suffering.
If only life wasn't so cruel, if only lif…
Words That Hit Home
A sentence written by Kathryn Schulz in the New Yorker that captured my life. "No matter how beautifully your life is arranged, no matter how lovingly you tend to it, it will not stay that way forever."
There was a time when my life was beautifully lived under a rainbow, surrounded by bright blue skies - embraced with tender and caring love, full of gleeful joy and happiness. A future that was bright and full of promises and dreams, shared and tended to with desire and affection.
Then, sudden suicide, a devastating death and all was gone, all was lost. Life forever changed, never the same again.