Together with my dear friend Elizabeth, a favorite of Andrew’s, tomorrow I am going to Washington to attend a conference at the Suicide Prevention Legislative Institute.
The first day will be spent on Field Advocate Training Sessions, Update on Suicide Prevention Trends/Best Practices, Policy Issue Review and finally, we will prepare for the following day’s visit to The Capitol.
As a New York delegate I will meet with US Senators Chuck Schumer, Kirsten Gillibrand and Congresswoman Nita Lowey.
In January 2003, again with my friend Elizabeth, I attended a similar event, except that that time it was about SIDS.
Making our way to then Senator Clinton’s office, I certainly did not expect to be making a similar “pilgrimage” albeit for a different cause, but again as a result of losing one of my children. This time to Suicide.
But what else can I do, it is not in my nature to take it on the chin. Not being angry with my son, for whom I have only love, I have to tackle suicide itself and the bigger picture from which suicide emerges.
Suicide is death; death from suicide, no different to death from cancer, heart disease, or any other disease.
Diseases originate from the mind, they are the result of a dis-ease, a thought imbalance that leads to chemical imbalance which then manifests as depression, cancer, diabetes and on and on.
By learning to control our minds instead of being controlled by it, we become “…the masters of our fate, the captains of our soul…”
These are times of great change, and as I have said before, the old paradigms are inadequate, it is time to usher in new ones. When Yoga and meditation become as natural as brushing our teeth, we will see a new Yuga, a new era on earth of unprecedented health, wealth and peace.
In the meantime, as we gradually move to a deeper and truer understanding of the causes, we need to address and treat the symptoms, as well as raise awareness and understanding of what death by suicide is.
What would people, society, say if, upon reading that so and so died of cancer, on line “users” left comments such as:
“What an idiot to waste his life on cancer.”
“Cancer is for Sissies who can’t take life.”
“Another spoiled trust-fund weenie who topped himself with cancer, good riddance.”
Those are but a fraction of the typical comments that a lot of people on the internet make about someone who dies by suicide. Not all of course, many express sympathy, but the point is that suicide is shrouded in mystery and stigma due to ignorance and lack of understanding. And we are going to change that, that’s all.
While I am away from tomorrow until Tuesday, my wonderful and brilliant daughter Florentina will take over writing the blog.
Take care and thank you for your support.
PS. Point of interest; it is an indication of the importance of the issue, that since staring this blog on October 11 2009, less than five months ago, we have had 59,800 hits and counting. We’ll hit 60,000 in the next few hours! Let it be that as the blog hits go up, suicide rates go down!