The People Left Behind... How Do We Love Them Best?
Robin Williams passed away today.
Everyone gets really quiet someone commits suicide. It's the unspoken thing that is usually only discussed in whispered conversations... or glossed over so that we don't have to say the "s" word.
It's so hard to have the uncomfortable conversations. We want to be polite. We're even a little scared. We have absolutely NO idea what to say... but we desperately want to be there and to love the folks left behind.
I feel very uniquely fitted to speak into this conversation, though, so I'm going to. Because as someone who has seen this played out, I know it's imperative that someone speak beyond the headlines.
Pray for the folks that loved him. Sure, his fans loved him, but pray for the folks that REALLY knew him and loved him.
Those family members and close friends wish they had known the level of his despair. They wish they could have saved him from the dis-ease that robbed him of the very happiness that he gave to so many. They wish they could make today different. And in the middle of the wishes and the tears, they know that they were powerless beyond the prayers they prayed on his behalf... this battle was not theirs to fight.
They'll read the headlines. Please remember that.
They'll hear the whispers. They are mourning... not oblivious.
They need love and time to remember him fondly. They don't want to talk about "what happened." Know why? It's already done and it can't be undone.
It will be like oxygen to them to talk about the good times when depression did not rob him of his joy. They want to talk about everything that was great... and sometimes they won't want to talk at all.
Every now and then they will want to be mad... and they'll need someone who gets the "mad."
Every now and then they'll need to just cry... and they'll need someone to cry with them... or maybe NOT cry with them and just be there.
They won't know everything they need all at once, but they will immediately begin walking through the very hardest year of their lives. Everything is a first. Everything hurts.
So, while we mourn that depression ravaged another soul and took another life, remember them and send a prayer their way without staring at the "what happened."
Every family who has every walked this path mourns with them. Our families know that while the sun rises again, and eventually you discover that joy still does come in the morning, it takes a minute.
Our families know that the only salve for this kind of pain is #Jesus. God be with the Williams family tonight.
I hope that everyone who loved the work of Robin Williams will find their favorite clip and post them like crazy. Joy comes in the morning, we know, and we also know that Robin Williams carried a lot of it on his journey and freely shared it with the world.
And I usually don't say, "I hope you'll share this", but just this once, I hope that you do. There are some hearts out there that need this one.
ChristieAitken@gmail.com , 2014
Google+: +Christie Aitken