Losing a loved one to suicide is the beginning of a long process of grief. My purpose in this series is to share with you a few things that have been helpful to me in these almost 12 months since we lost our daughter Michelle to suicide.
JOURNALING. I have kept various journals over the years, although somewhat sporadically. The day I got the news about Michelle, I began having a dialogue with her in my mind. As I sat down to write about our RV experiences (we became full-time RVers two years ago), I found myself speaking to her through my pen as if I were writing a letter to her. I wrote about the daily activities of our family and asked her some of the many questions I had on my mind about her death. In some way, verbalizing these thoughts help me my process my grief.
As time passed, I found myself returning to my more “normal” way of journaling. But still I updated her on the progress her daughters were making or how Walter and I were dealing with our feelings about losing her. Part of the satisfaction I received from this is that it kept her memory alive in my heart in a personal way.
I know that the act of suicide ended Michelle’s pain; I wanted her to know that although my heart was broken, I was taking positive steps to more forward in the grief process and that she would always remain a vital part of my life.