Unsure of a title, tags, categories!

Some of my followers may have noticed that I have not been very active for a while now – a lot has happened recently.

Just 1 month ago today, I lost my uncle, suddenly, and I have been unsure as to how to react. Without wanting to be to blunt, on the 12th December 2014, my dear uncle committed suicide, and this has had a devastating effect on the family.

My uncle was 62, which is only 8 years older than me, and growing up, he was more like a cousin than anything else – he was 20 years younger than my mother).

He taught me many things over the years – particularly motor mechanic things, and helped me over the years with my cars, and how to maintain and repair them – something that I still enjoy. He also had an influence on me with learning music, and I have passed this on to my sons.

His suicide was a reaction to depression, and he obviously couldn’t see any other action. What my uncle didn’t see was the love, regard, and respect in which he was held.

Over the weeks since, I tried to support my cousins – as one flew back from Germany, and the other had to come from the other end of the country, and make sure that they didn’t have to worry about too many details. This helped me with my greiving process (as I think this is doing, too). I have also been busy helping with his estate, and this has helped me too.

What do I want to say? I’m not sure, so please forgive me my rambles.

This community I belong to has a wide range of peoples, some of whom suffer from depression and other illnesses, and I have always tried to lend my support to them, and I have often read their stories to make sure I have some awareness of their challenges. To me, a mental illness is little different to a physical illness.

Some people die because their heart gives out, my uncle died because his brain gave up. Both the heart and the brain have problems – and I find it difficult seeing a difference. I have often said this over the past weeks, as my relations have asked “What if…..?”, my uncle’s brain gave out, just as a heart would give out, and there is not much anyone could have done.

I like to think that my uncle is no longer tortured or tormented, and has found some kind of peace.

Unfortunately, it has left a lot of angst, guilt, sorrow, and shock with his older brothers and sisters, his 2 sons, his ex wife and her husband (who were very good friends to my wonderful uncle), and many others.

If you have read this far, please read a little further.

At Uncle Greg’s funeral, the subject of suicide was not swept under the carpet, it was acknowledged, and also support networks were promoted. The main one in New Zealand is www.lifeline.org.nz, and there are others.

Please feel free to put one of your local help lines in the comment section.

What I would like to offer, is someone to listen non-judgementally to anything, should you wish to talk (via email initially, or  more if requested). I’m not sure if I can help, but I will listen. Sometimes it helps to have someone distant to talk to. I may not be able to do much, but I can listen, and give some time freely.

Please, this is not a plea for sympathy, but an effort to let you know that if you ask for help there are lots of people willing to help.

Uncle Greg's Mini (they were one of his passions)

Uncle Greg’s Mini (they were one of his passions)

I think it is poingnant to finish:

Live, laugh, love!

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16 responses to “Unsure of a title, tags, categories!

  1. As you so rightly say, Uncle Greg is no longer tormented, but it’s those left behind that truly struggle in the wake of such a tragedy. There are few words that can meaningfully be said. This community is here for you, and others – whatever little comfort we may bring. Just like others who went before him, may we honour his memory through remembering his life, not his passing.

  2. I’m so sorry for your loss. You have always helped me at my lowest points with a kind word and just knowing you were in my corner. I know I don’t always acknowledge those moments but they are dear to me. I’ll be thinking of and praying for your family and your Uncle Greg for peace and comfort ahead. Much love to you.

    • Thank you. Likewise, I often think of you and your many kindnesses, and your journeys through life. I know I am lucky with my circle of friends and their love. And I count myself lucky that I know I can ask for help or support, or just a kind thought, and that I am able to do the same. Big hugs to you and the family. (And I hope your winter is not as bad as last year! 🙂 ).

  3. I am so sorry for your loss, and I think you do have a grasp on what the depressed deal with. It is very hard to ask for help when we don’t care about anything, much less if we live or die. It isn’t a conscious choice, just a matter of untreated help for the illness, even then, it takes a lot of hard work to see through the depression and know that things can improve. Grief is something we come to live with in spite of the pain. Your willingness to listen to others is a wonderful way to work your way through your grief. Hugs to you.

    • Thank you for your kind comments. I helped Uncle Greg about 5 years ago, but it took time for him to be able to ask for help. This time, unfortunately, it looks like he was unable to ask for help and support in time. I just wish that this helps others to understand that there are always lots of people willing to support, help, and love you, no matter what. /hugs/ for you, April. Thanks.

  4. Reblogged this on Griffins and Ginger Snaps and commented:
    Reposting this from my friends blog about his uncle, who lost his battle with depression.

    This is also a reminder that there are people on your side and ready to help you including professionals. If you need to talk, they are always available:

    Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

    The Trevor Project Lifeline: 1-866-488-7386

    • Thank you so very much. Within myself, I am okay, but helping the family has been time consuming. One of Greg’s sons (his elder) lives in Hamburg, so he and his partner had a rushed trip out to NZ, and I was helping keeping arrangements progressing until he got here, and after. So hard for a 32 year old to cope with, especially from a distance. They are now coming back for a scheduled holiday (left yesterday), but not so happy. Greg was right into his genealogy – and as proud Bohemian descendant sounds like a good reason to raise a pint (or 3) to your lips to celebrate life. 🙂

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