Christmas Blues

It’s that time of the week again, and I’m feeling a little melancholy.

Earlier today I had the pleasure of attending a breakfast meeting at the local chapter of BNI – the Bay City group in Geelong.

It was an informative and interesting meeting, and there were a few people there with whom I’d like to connect again – but that’s the whole idea of the group – networking.

I’d been invited to go along with the view of promoting my book, and I have been asked if I would like to come back early next year to talk about it.   So that’s great news for me, because it’s really time to promote the book, and to live up to my promise that I would get the message out that we all have a responsibility in preventing suicide.

After the meeting, a member came up to me and introduced himself, and then proceeded to talk about a suicide that had occurred yesterday here in Geelong. We seem to be getting more than our fair share of them lately.

We talked for a while and he was quite upset, despite not being closely associated with the family of the victim.

Now hearing these types of stories is nothing new for me, in fact I get it a lot since I have written the book, and started talking about it. All of these sad stories touch me deeply, but this morning it really had an effect on me.

As I walked back to my car I kept thinking “Crap!!” ‘Shit!!” There’s another family in total devastation and just before Christmas too. Not that it is really any different at another time of the year. It’s just that Christmas comes with it’s own special reminders, and to have a suicide fall into that time is doubly painful.

So now we are coming into that period of time that wherever you go, people are saying “Merry Christmas” and “Have a lovely Christmas”. It can be difficult when you are thinking that there isn’t much to celebrate when a loved one is not there anymore. My first few Christmases after Kelly died were awful, especially the initial one. I think I cried most of the day, but now I just remember her as the special person she was to me and to many others. I still get sad that she’s not here in the flesh, but I know her spirit is with us and I choose to honour that.

I set out to save a life, and I may never know if I have, but I’m going to think that if I haven’t already, then I will shortly. Kelly’s story is probably not much different from thousands of others, but in telling it, my hope is that it will resonate enough to make a difference in the life of some one.

Since starting to write this post, I have been asked to tell my story to three different groups next year, so I will definitely be honouring my promise to Kelly.

Now as someone cheerfully pointed out this morning – there are only twelve more sleeps until Christmas day – to me it is not about presents anymore, but rather about being with the people that matter to you.

And, if you can’t be with them, remember them and enjoy the memories.

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