The 12th Anniversary.

April’s always a hard month. March is all smiles, all birthday month glee, and then April hits like a tornado, uprooting all the things I’d thought were secured. It’s a pattern now. Spend the first six days of April weighted with grief, maybe crying, maybe not. Maybe drinking, maybe not. It’s spent thinking, playing it over, a continuous loop of slow motion heartbreak. Sometimes I’m angry, sometimes I’m not.

Twelve years ago tomorrow my friend dropped me off after school and threw himself off an overpass.


I was 16. So was he. Our birthdays were neighbors, his on the 11th, mine on the 12th.

This year I realized that soon I’ll have lived two of his lifetimes. That I’ll have lived half my life since his death.

Every year is different. You’d think I’d stop feeling the need to memorialize it all, to let my memories push me down darkened alleyways, but it’s been 12 years and I just can’t.

I can’t imagine not talking about it.

I can’t imagine not publicly declaring that suicide hurts the people who are left standing, that it leaves scars on the inside, that it’s life changing, life wrecking, that it hurts beyond words, that even if you don’t think you’re loved, you are and that even if you don’t think you can handle it, you can because you’re beautiful and strong and brilliant and because I will hold your hand.

I can’t imagine not taking a day to write it out, to sit with his memory purposefully and think on it, taking the time to do nothing but roll my feelings around and reflect on it all.

We visited Notre Damn in Paris. I’m not religious in any traditional sense of the word, but visiting Notre Damn was a surprisingly moving experience for me. I lit a candle for David there, wishing he’d had the chance to tramp around Paris and London, to live a full life, to be okay.

Rest easy, my friend.

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9 thoughts on “The 12th Anniversary.

  1. I think it is okay to talk about him every year on this day. To honor his memory. To never forget. To spread awareness. I know today is a really rough day for you. Sending hugs and love your way, darling. I love you, and am here if you want to talk. xoxo

  2. I think it’s brilliant that even after all this time, your friend is still loved, still thought of and still missed. It’s so true that they live on with us. Happy thoughts, hey.

  3. Amy

    I think it’s great that you honor him each year. What a difficult day.

    P.S. On a less-important note: I had a similarly moving experience at Sacre-Coeur. Isn’t it weird? I literally haven’t set foot in a church since I was 19 and I was in tears by the end being moved.

  4. I’m so sorry for your loss! I was watching of all things the funeral for Ms. Whitney Houston and T. D Jakes said something great:

    “Death doesn’t win where this is love.” When you think about you friend death hasn’t won. Love wins.

  5. CarlyRM

    I’m so sorry. Of course it is okay to remember him!

    At work are about to start a project helping a local organization with a suicide prevention campaign aimed at the family and friends of at-risk individuals. The goal is to encourage people to speak up and not be afraid to ask if their friend or loved one is considering suicide or needs help. So much of the campaigns I see are aimed at the individuals thinking about suicide that I thought this was an interesting approach. Of course, there are always the ones where no one sees it coming at all. I’d be happy to send you a link when it is done. Their goal is to get it to go viral.

  6. i think it’s lovely you remember him every year and that you continue to talk about it. because you’re so right, suicide affects more than just one person, it affects everyone around them and it’s always hard, no matter what.

  7. I lost a good friend to suicide my freshman year of college. It was right before Thanksgiving break. I think about her all the time but especially around that holiday. That sense of great loss is still there every time I am reminded of her. Such an empty feeling. I think it’s so important to remember. It’s all we have to comfort us, the ones left behind. That they are at peace and never forgotten.

  8. I do this every year for my friend who was killed in a car accident. May 5th. Part of me feels like I should just shut up about it already… but I can’t help but think about it, and I feel like she deserves a tribute.

    It’s a little bit of a different situation than yours… it was an accident, not a choice, at least as far as I’ve come to know. But the hole is still there, because regardless of the means, a loss is a loss.

    Time (in theory) will help soften the wound, but it’s like a scar. It never goes away entirely. And maybe it shouldn’t. They serve as reminders.

    And it sounds like your friend deserves to have someone honor and remember him.

    Big (belated) hugs.

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