Why I've been so down lately, and why I'm sharing. It's long, but hope it helps someone.
June 7, 2016 3:31am CST
I've been rather cryptic lately about everything going on with my family, but some time has passed and I don't think talking about it now would be too big of a deal since it's to a bunch of strangers and no names will be involved, I didn't want to post it on FB or Twitter or anything like that due to respect for my family. The only reason I'm talking about it now, is because I'm hoping it could make people think and maybe save some lives. I told everyone about my uncle dying, the day after we buried my uncle I woke up to a text message from my sister informing me that my step nephew had died. My step nephew was only 20. He was my brother's step son. He had been apart of my family from the time he was 3 when my brother married his mom. I wasn't super close to my step nephew, but I babysat him several times, and I watched as this little snot grew up into a person I actually liked. He had a lot of issues as a kid, and a lot of the memories I had of him weren't the best, but the older he got the more I started to like him. There was a point where he and my brother got into it, and the issues were bad enough that my brother and my step nephew's mom got a divorce, but eventually they got back together. They have a daughter together. My brother's only biological child, but he treated his step son like he was part of the family, and I always called him my nephew. I wasn't close to him in the end, but I can't lie and say it didn't hurt waking up to that text message. I was informed it was suicide. He took a gun to his head. I don't know what was going through his head, I do know he was drinking, and alcohol is a depressant. I would like to believe had he not been drinking he may have been thinking more rationally. So exactly a week after I buried my uncle who while I was sad over his loss, I know he lived a long life for someone who wasn't supposed to make it to the age of 5, I went to my step nephew's funeral, which was beyond sad. He was 20, he deserved to live a long life, and this is how it ended for him. What was hard for me was seeing my family. Watching as my SIL cried and clung onto his body, despite the fact that that body was no longer her son. Watching as my brother cried, seeing the regret for everything that ever transpired between him and my step nephew clearly showing on his face. Seeing my step nephew's lifeless body in that casket. A body so caked in makeup you couldn't even tell it was him. I didn't go up to the coffin, because I couldn't bare to see his entire face, I didn't want to remember him like that. I wanted to remember that smile on his face. He had such a wonderful smile. Maybe it was hiding his pain, the pain of feeling unwanted by his biological father, who by the way acted like he was such a great guy at the funeral, never mind he was never really there when his son was alive, not the way his son needed him. My sister in law was the only one who was ever truly there for him. I could see him laying there in the casket from where I was standing in the distance. I just couldn't go get a full view. My SIL saw me and instantly came to me clinging to me while crying and said "thank you for coming" all I could manage to get out was "I'm so so sorry" I mean what else could I tell her? There's nothing you can tell a grieving mother that will make things better. I can't imagine how she felt nor do I ever want to. I can't imagine bringing your baby home from the hospital only to have to bury them 20 years later, sitting there wondering what you could have done differently. As I sat and watched the slideshow with all of the pictures of him as a baby, so smiley just the way I remember him, I couldn't help but cry. I broke down a few times, because this is the hardest thing my family has been through in awhile. Losing anyone is hard, but losing someone so young, and knowing they had to be in great emotional pain before their death...wishing you had known how they were feeling, and that maybe you could have been there to stop it, maybe had someone known they could have gotten him help, but it's all a bunch of what ifs, and there's nothing anyone could have done, because no one really knew. A lot of people were at his funeral. I don't know what parts they played in his life, but I have to wonder how many of us had really shown him what he meant to us in life? Maybe had he felt that love he wouldn't be laying in that casket. From my understanding a lot of people had given up on him and walked away, and really I can't say I'm any better. I saw him only one time in the past 6 years before I saw him in that casket, and that's on me. When things got tough people walked away, and then everyone has the nerve to show up at his funeral and grieve as though they had been there the whole time. I went more for my brother, SIL, and niece, because I knew they needed the support. I knew that as far as my step nephew went I should have been there more, and I'm sorry I wasn't. I can't help but think about how his parents should be making wedding plans, or be waiting in a waiting room for their first grandchild to be born, not making funeral arrangements. When his parents split up they believed they would be in each other's lives for the rest of their lives, despite maybe not liking each other, they didn't think this is how they'd be set free from one another, they would prefer to have to put up with each other, than having to bury their son and being free of each other. The only link between them is gone forever. I think about this and I think about the parents who wish they could be out of each others lives, and I wish they too could learn something from this. I want to believe my step nephew's death will save some lives. I know my niece (his sister) was starting to feel depressed, and this woke her up, it woke me up too. I've been having my own issues lately, and this is a reminder of why I won't do what he did. Seeing the faces of my brother, SIL, and niece are enough to remind me why it is I keep fighting my battle against depression. I was so upset that the funeral was taken over mostly by his dad's side while my SIL and brother were paying for half of it. My SIL was there for him in life far more than his biological father was, and I feel like she didn't get a say in anything. I feel like my step nephew's father was over compensating for his absence in his son's life by trying to be there during his death, and that's when it matters least. I know everyone is filled with regrets now, and that there's nothing anyone can do about it now. In the end we have to accept what is, because sometimes it's too late to make things right. Suicide is NEVER the answer, watching my family completely break down was a wake up call to myself and hopefully to others, and I'm sharing this in hopes that if any of you are feeling like life just isn't worth living that you seek help immediately. Don't do that to the people that care about you, I'm sure regardless of what you think or feel someone out there cares about you and will miss you. Killing yourself is not revenge on anyone, it's the loss of your life, a life you could turn around and make into something, and don't ever think that you're setting people free, because you're not. If this has taught me anything, it's that despite what you think you matter. You won't set anyone free, all you're going to do is tear your family apart, leaving them to mourn you for the rest of their lives, with you goes a piece of them they'll never get back. I really hope that this story helps someone, if it only helps one person it will be worth it. I originally didn't plan to share this, but I sat here thinking, and realized with how down I've been feeling because of all of this, that it'd be so easy to let myself get to the place my step nephew went to, and I knew I couldn't let that happen, because I couldn't do that to my family, and I thought maybe this could also help someone else. So I hope someone can take something from this.
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