I shared this story on my other blog but wanted to share this with you all here. This is part of our story. We have a very sympathetic heart when it comes to mental illness and hope to possibly help others who suffer from this awful condition. We would love to hear your stories and the successes you’ve had in combating your illness. With Love!
One and a half years ago I lost my 27 year old son to suicide.
My girls lost their only brother.
It was a horrific day and my worst nightmare.
I want you to know the man my son was.
But, more importantly I want to share his story (Our story).
The story of a beautiful person with Bi-Polar Depression….
I gave birth to Jeremy on October 3, 1984
He weighed in at 9 lbs. 3 oz.
It was a hard and long delivery; some complications.
He gave us tremendous joy. A son! Our second child.
At a few months old Jeremy developed severe allergies to almost everything.
With a very restricted diet and a meat based formula he grew and thrived.
It seemed like he was always sick with ear infections and his allergies.
At two he developed asthma; something he suffered with the rest of his life.
He had lost 80% of his hearing in one ear and 30% in his other.
He always would say that his whole world sounded like he was under water.
At five he had surgery to remove his tonsils and adnoids
which seemed to make a huge improvement except to his ears.
He loved his sisters; was their protector and their biggest tease.
He had to because we moved so much in the military.
Jeremy struggled because his dad was gone so much, sometimes 6 months to a year at a time.
I worried so much about that.
We lived in amazing places and experienced things that most don’t get to.
Washington, Germany, Arizona, San Franscisco
At 14 Jeremy was diagnosed with Bi-Polar Depression.
During the down times he struggled, couldn’t concentrate at school,
was tired, and started getting into trouble.
During his up times he excelled in music, sports, and art.
He loved cars, video games, and spending time with his friends and family.
He went to therapists, doctors, and took medications.
But the hard reality of those with Bi-Polar Depression, they put on a front that everything is OK.
They go off their medications during their highs because they don’t think they need it.
Jeremy was an amazingly hard worker and learned new things easily.
I would say that was one of his greatest attributes.
Jeremy had setbacks and obstacles.
Sometimes he learned things the hard way.
At 19 Jeremy fell in love and at 20 got married to the love of his life.
With Jeremy’s depression they had hard times, but also had awesomely, amazing times.
With a growing family, the stress of supporting them, and school
He hit a low; a deep low.
Depression is a major illness and with severe depression it’s hard to function.
We saw him struggling; worse than he had ever before.
He felt overwhelmed, tired, and a failure.
With depression you don’t think of anything else but your pain and how to get rid of it.
It’s a real physical pain that overtook him.
He seemed to not be able to get out of his dark hole.
He knew he had made mistakes and dwelled on those rather than all his successes.
He gave up.
He never complained.
He always smiled even though he felt like crying.
We didn’t know how bad it was.
He wasn’t thinking about what he would leave behind.
He just wanted to stop the pain!
I tell you these things for a few reasons….
Watch those around you and see if they act depressed.
If anyone you know struggles with the same things Jeremy did, get them some help.
Those who are depressed but never complain about it are the ones you need to worry about.
Be insistent and pushy if need be.
Depression runs in families. Be mindful of this.
Don’t judge those who have lost a family member through suicide.
Depression happens in all types of people. They don’t choose to be depressed.
Depression is as real a disease as cancer or diabetes.
There seems to be a stigma attached to families of suicide victims.
We need your love and support!
Most important! Don’t push aside your own depression if you are unfortunate to have this illness.
Please take care of yourself and push yourself to get the help you need.
Follow what the Doctors tell you to do.
You are amazing and have so much to live for; so much to look forward to.
Please love yourself!
My son was blessed and is so sacred to me.
I miss him like crazy. I miss his smile. I miss his hugs. I miss his humor.
Jeremy’s lost life is so sad. So incredibly sad!
If there are any questions you think I could answer for you please let me know!
My goal is to help prevent suicide and make others aware at how scary depression can be.
With sincere concern,
Dru, Jessica, Brittany, and Ashley