Our story – Bravelets

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Our story

Posted on March 17 2014

Our story
Our story is one of survival on multiple levels. I've had 3 people die by suicide in the last 3 & 1/2 years. A friend, my husband, & my uncle. My husband of 16 years committed suicide on the first day of summer break for our children. He had been planning it for several months, but my girls blamed themselves for the incident.

I had been at work, the girls had a "fight" with my husband. He became agitated, broke the glass out on the front of the stove by throwing a mixing bowl. The girls called me & all the kids went to a friend's house. My husband, gathered his "supplies" & drove up the canyon from our home where he overdosed. He was found a few hours later by a passer by, his truck hanging onto a guardrail by the back bumper. 

He was "rescued", placed on a ventilator, flown to a major hospital. After much discussion with the physicians & hospital ethics committee, it was determined that his advanced directive & living will would be honored allowing for no further treatment for a futile case. He died about 38 hours after his attempt.

I am a nurse. I took this very hard because I had fought so hard to try to help him with his ever increasing physical disabilities over the years. Rheumatoid arthritis, degenerative joint disease, chronic pain, & depression took from him everything he enjoyed. To this day, I still fight with guilt & pain. I'm slowly overcoming it. I hospitalized one of my daughters within 6 months of his attempt for her own attempt. I've contemplated it more than once myself. It's been a struggle, but my family has toughed it out & is moving forward.

I am very grateful for my friends who stuck by me & held my hand through the last 21 months. It has been a rough road & I know there are more trials & emotions to deal with in the future.

The bravelets website was introduced to me by my niece. I now have my own daily reminder of my reasons to stay strong, to "be brave", & to LIVE LIFE. Never give up, never surrender. I wish all of you struggling with suicide, as personal survivors or survivors of friend/family suicide, strength in your life to carry on with each day & each moment. There is hope out there on the other side of the fog, I promise. Just keep moving forward. I don't care if it is an inch at a time, keep moving forward. There will come a day when you will be able to look back & say: "I survived this. It was hard, but I am stronger now because of it."

My past does not define me, it's just a story of where I've been.

Be strong, be brave, have hope.
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