I don’t even know who I’m writing this post for.
All I know is that I can’t stop thinking about events that took place on Saturday and the 3-month old baby who no longer has a mom or a dad to love and protect her.
If you hadn’t already learned about the series of events, a Kansas City Chiefs linebacker fatally shot his girlfriend in front of his own mom, and then drove to a practice facility parking lot where he shot and killed himself in front of the football team’s coach and general manager.
That’s two lives removed from this earth far too early, who are now more recognized than they ever dreamed possible for entirely the wrong reasons.
I can’t stop thinking about an article my friend shared on Facebook about the short- and long-term effects that traumatic brain injury has on the lives of football players. Game Over is the most thorough and thought provoking piece of sports writing I’ve read this year. It’s hard to discredit the inextricable link between athletes who’ve routinely had their bells rung and the mental aftershock they endure.
It’s hard to accept that my boys want to play football and that they are now old enough to play tackle football like their dad did.
This most recent tragedy makes me think about every person who decides to end their life because of hopelessness, confusion, and mental anguish.
I had an aunt who committed suicide. Without going into much detail, I was very young when she decided that life was too hard to live. I never really knew her. I wished I would have.
I’m confident I know people today who are struggling. Who are too proud or scared to admit how much they hurt.
A fear of mine is that they won’t reach out to someone before they reach for the gun, rope, or pill bottle.
It weighs heavily on my heart that so many hurt so much.
I’ve shared my top three uplifting songs before because I believe so strongly in the influence of music.
I also believe in the power of prayer/reflection and of finding peace in others. I believe that blogging is an outlet for many, including myself, to not only embrace but also to escape from the world in which we live.
Never do I diminish another person’s feelings nor judge a person who wrongly believes there is nothing left in them to give. If you are reading this and suffer a sense of despair, I beg you to consider those in your life who you impact everyday. Do not discredit their need to have YOU in their lives.
“Nothing could be worse than the fear that one had given up too soon, and left one unexpended effort that might have saved the world.” – Jane Addams
We all have something to give to this world, even when that something is unknown to ourselves. Don’t ever give up. You are not alone.
Created by Heidi Woodard
The act of suicide is often referred to as ‘selfish’. Those who are left behind are often resentful of, and bitter toward the departed. I don’t subscribe to that belief.
We who remain behind in the wake of suicide, have no idea what thoughts may have been colliding, nor how hard or how long those collisions might have been taking place inside the head of someone that desperate to end their life. That is a judgment no living person is qualified to make.
There can be no way to understand that moment – that chaotic moment when a life, a future, a legacy, and the all the relationships that go with it, no longer hold any value. It must feel, in that chaotic moment, like the universe has not yet begun, or has already ended, and therefore there is nothing to lose.
It is truly heartbreaking.
Far too many lives lost too soon. You are absolutely right to talk about the undeniable grip that depression can have on a person’s life. When ending it all seems like the only way to make the pain or loneliness go away. My hope is that peace eventually calms the soul. This world needs every single soul to make it turn.
Sent from my iPhone
Thank you Heidi, that was beautiful. This hits very close to home for me right now. I wish I could heal all the hurt, but mostly I just wish I could make people see how special and important they truly are.
You for commenting Michelle. I am sorry to hear about it hits so close to home but I am glad to know that you got something out of this post
Heidi this blog is beautiful! Brought tears to my eyes. I hope your words are just what someone needs to hear.
Me too, Lisa. It is hard to imagine a feeling more awful than having no hope. Thank you for reading and commenting.
I’ve lost a few to suicide! I had the same feeling that I could have stopped them if given the chance. The most recent was a friends father. That hurt so many people.
Football will not change much. In many ways, the best solution would be to go back to the leather helmet days before the players had that weapon on their heads.
I know a former pro running back. A star in the NFL. When he went pro, he told them he would play ten years and that was all! He stayed true to his word and is healthy today.
I could easily live in a world without football.
From all of the research I have been reading, your friend is lucky to have escaped unscathed after 10 years in the NFL. I am about as pro-sports as they come. I played college softball and remember witnessing a ball ricochet off the face of a player before helmets with facemasks were required. My own son, at his young age, has already taken two baseballs off the cheekbone. So I completely understand how athletes can put themselves at risk for the love of the game. What really worries me though is the potential damage that repeated blows to the head can do. And I had never even considered the point you make about the helmet being more of a weapon than an item of protection. Thanks for your feedback and sorry to read about your losses.