Wake Me Up When September Ends

There are many ways to lose a child. Some die from terrible illness. Some in tragic accidents.Some are murdered senselessly. Some die in war.

My child died by his own hand. The death certificate states it bluntly. Self-inflicted gun shot wound.

I found him. As horrible as that was, to me it seemed right that I should be the one. I bore him. I loved him most. It spared someone else the horror.

I'd like him to be remembered for the way he lived and not for the way he died. He was a wonderful son. Gentle, kind, loving, sensitive, helpful. He was bright, well-read, educated, hard working and successful.

He was a wonderful brother. Thoughtful, fun, giving, caring, involved, and so proud of his younger brother and sister. He taught them so many things, how to catch frogs and tadpoles. How to fish. He took them on hikes in the woods and taught them to identify footprints and wild flowers.He read them stories and went to their elementary school concerts.

He had demons. Alcohol, manic depression, over-sensitivity, negative thinking, and abuse from an older cousin that I never knew about until he was twenty. He desperately tried to overcome those demons through treatment and therapy. He finally lost the battle. He finally became overwhelmed--and no longer in his right mind, he took the only route of escape he could see.

My life instantly became divided into two parts.Before and after. This year in September it will be twelve years. I dread September now.

At first my mind insisted on going over and over events, conversations,interactions--struggling to piece it together. To make some sense of it, to understand why. Gradually, I gave up, knowing that no answer would ever be found. My mind went over and over my failings, what I should have done, should have said. I read many books and came to realize all suicide survivors deal with these feelings.

A mother never gets over it. A family never gets over it. Time does bring some measure of peace.

I sit at the pond and talk to him. I feel his presence there. It was our special place when he was alive. He loved the pond. We sat there together nearly every day feeding the fish. He bought me koi as birthday presents every year and he stocked the blue gills the first year the pond was dug when he was twelve. It is my sacred place where I go now to visit with him.

I am thankful that I am a spiritual person.  I am thankful that I truly do not believe that death is the end of our journey. I don't know exactly what happens next, of course, but I know he still exists in some form.

Living has wounded us all in one way or another. This is my deepest wound.



datura datura
56-60, F
78 Responses Sep 5, 2008

My heart bleeds when I read such stories and I just want to say I am sorry you have lost a son (I love my children as much as you have loved yours - and cannot begin to think if that happened to me how I would cope. hugs and kisses "from another mother"

It's nice that you can feel his presence at the pond.I'm sure he is grateful that you come to talk to him,I know my friend who also passed away is that I talk to him.Your son sounds like he was an amazing person.You are making him proud every day by continuing to live.Just stay strong,and somewhere,he is smiling.

Sweet sister....may God's peace that surpasses all understanding be w you...God bless...

Your son was a beautiful person. Thank-you for sharing this painful part of your life. May you one day only have peaceful memories of him during September. X WG

Thank you so much for sharing your story. My son, my firstborn, also decided that leaving us was his only real option. The "what ifs" and "what more could I have done?" still haunt me well over a decade since the event.<br />
<br />
I hope you are able to find the peace and understanding I still am seeking.

Thank you for writing this. Thank you from my heart. I needed to read this tonight, this week, this month. I wish I could help your hurt.

I can't say I understand what you feel because I have never lost a child. I have however seen the pain from two friends I was very close to that have lost a child. My heart goes out to you over this.<br />
I wish I could give you peace or some kind of understanding, but sadly nothing I can say will help ease the pain or the sense of loss you feel especially during Sept. Both of my friends that I mentioned go through deep depressions twice a year missing their love ones.<br />
I wish I could give you a big hug. I hope you find the peace and regain your loss in the afterlife.<br />
<br />
Your friend<br />

Your story touched me, I'll admit I may not have the right words to say, but I feel like I should at least give it a shot. I couldn't imagine the amount of loss you must have felt and still feel. They say that time heals all wounds but I still think wounds like this must leave at least a scar. I wish I had words to say but I have never been in such a situation like that before. The only suicide attempt in my family happened before I was even born. I don't know how I would respond to something like that, I can tell that you must be a very strong woman, much stronger than I think I would be if I were to experience something like that. I commend you for having the strength to carry on and to share your touching story. I hope you find some solstice in the conversations you have with your sons' spirit by the pond. I am sure you will see your son again. Thank you for sharing your touching story.

I am sorry, but my immediate reaction is to look up the cousin who abused your son, & beat his a**.<br />
I know this does nothing, And is immature, but that is how I feel right now. I do apologize if this post causes you any dismay.

I am so sorry for your loss. <br />
I will remember your son whenever feeling hopeless. <br />
You speak of such tragedy with such beauty & grace. <br />
I, too, am a member of this group. <br />
My son died on the 20th of September as an 11 week, three day old infant nearly 14 1/2 years ago. <br />
I do not know you, I... am just horribly sorry that we are members of this group for similar experiences. I dread the end of summer every year.<br />
It is pure hell to lose a child under any circumstance. Your reality is the deepest fear of any parent. <br />
As previous comments say, you are amazing! Your strength is an inspiration to many and if ever you need someone to listen or to cry with, I am with you. <br />
I am so, so sorry about your son. <br />
May Peace find you and know that your experience has saved a life. <br />
A million hugs to you!!

Indeed you are not alone D , not allowing yourself to consummed by greif in all its forms,you have aquired the wisdom to see that he is with you when you need him to be .....

Oh, the heart ache you have endured. I am so sorry. I feel for you. And I understand. What you tried and did, and how devastating it must be to lose someone to their demons. All the *if onlys* . We lost someone to a drunk driver. It was my granddaughter's fiance, and my great granddaughter's father. And she goes through it even now after nearly five years." If only I had asked him to bring me a coffee from Tim Horton's he would have been there later". And so on. So I know about the if onlys. Bless you.

I am so sorry. I was close to suicide myself and didn't because of my mother. Now I am a father and my son seems destined to revisi the demons of my early life. I can only try to help as I can and hope for the best.<br />
<br />
The death of a child must be as horrible a thing as any.

As someone who is suicidal, let me tell you something: You're not guilty.<br />
For your words, I see you were a wonderful mother.<br />
<br />
I love my mom and dad... and I have clearly stated they're not guilty... that I wanna commit suicide because of pain and fear.

To all of you,<br />
<br />
I hug all those who have lost a son, a brother, a friend. I too lost my brother 14 years back. I died with him. I am not alive any more.<br />
But I dont agree with you who say that people take their own life due to depression. The truth is that depression is brought about by another person or persons. Always, another person is responsible for somebody's suicide.

I am very sorry for your loss, and like you, I do not believe death is the end. Maybe someday, somewhere, youll see each other again. Blessed be!

I know how you feel. I lost my son. He was in a car accident but that's not what killed him. The hospital gave him to forms of medicine that he was HIGHLY allergic to. I like the song because it really says along to me and how I feel. It came out June of 2005 and was one of my sons' favorite songs & group. Well, my birthday is at the end of September, and Michael (my son that died) was really the only person that remembered it. I can relate to the song it really explains how I feel since he pased in Dec. 2008 (he was only 20).

....... :'(

When I heard the theme, I immediately thought of 'wake me up when September ends' by Green Day