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Overnight, my life changed. So where am I headed?

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When I heard the words, “Your son Charles killed himself,” my life changed forever. I didn’t even know I could change so fast. But it was overnight.

It took me a while to figure out what to do. I have been in advertising and marketing for two decades starting with a small agency for 6 months and then the Martin Agency.

I’ve been in digital marketing since 1995 when Google was a blinking cursor on a black screen.

I have been a co-owner at Impression Marketing since 2010 when I teamed up with Howard Deskin, my amazing business partner. I have always been focused on getting clients results and providing value. Howard’s philosophy was the same which is why he made a great partner.

He kept asking what I wanted to do and waited patiently.

What did I want to do?

Around February 2016 when I started this blog, I started to think that maybe I needed to go in a different direction. Howard thought I might want to as well but we decided to table it and revisit the subject once the fuzz in my head began to clear a little bit.

I wanted to see if the passion for the business would return. And while I still cared about my clients and my employees, I didn’t have the zing that I had before and felt it was time to move to where my heart was.

By May 2016, I figured out my purpose

I couldn’t just bail. I have employees and a business partner. I had thought that mergers between marketing and digital marketing companies was going to be the norm in the coming years and I wanted to make sure we had a good choice of dance partners. At the same time I was thinking this, so was Howard.

By May we were looking to make a move. In June, I went part time (2/3 time) because I went back too fast after my son’s death and I needed it. Suffering the loss of a child by suicide is so complex.

We both knew our employees valued having flexibility since they have families. They needed benefits and more opportunities. And I needed a situation that would allow me to exit with grace.

My business partner spearheaded this effort and we are merging with another company called WebStrategies Inc and I will work 2/3 time through the end of January 2017.

I’m following my heart

Funny how this merger was my dream 5 years ago. But my life has changed and focusing on suicide prevention and mental illness initiatives is the direction I must go in.

I am, by nature, creative, innovative and a writer/speaker. I am by nature, bold and forward thinking. Passionate is probably how I’d describe myself if I had to do it in one word. And I know my shortcomings, too and will look to others to fill those roles when I figure out the direction I go in.

This is a scary yet exciting move.

After investing $275,000 in Charles’ care over 5 years, something I’d do all over again, I don’t have the luxury of “retiring” permanently. I will still need to make a living.

I am not sure how it will all work out but I just have to have faith that it will.

So what’s on the horizon?

  1. Building the audience for this blog so we can achieve positive change (possibly getting a sponsor)
  2. Seeing my social media school program come to life which is already happening plus other suicide prevention initiatives under the Charles Aubrey Rogers Fund at Beacon Tree Foundation
  3. Becoming more involved in Beacon Tree Foundation and American Foundation of Suicide Prevention
  4. Starting a book on my story
  5. Securing paid speaking engagements (conferences for example) on:
    • My story of suicide loss and how I have found purpose and hope
    • Social media marketing for businesses and especially for non-profits
    • Personal branding. How do you figure out your personal brand and what are the next steps?
    • Women supporting women in business
  6. Creating an affordable way for non-profits to create content and have a more active social media presence
  7. Consulting on content (writing) and social media since I have expertise in this
  8. Proving a concept on marketing that has never been focused on

It’s a lot, I know. The list has at least been pared down from 12!

Here’s to reinventing myself. Deep breath.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

4 thoughts on “Overnight, my life changed. So where am I headed?”

  1. Anne Moss you continue to amaze and inspire me with your passion and determination to follow your heart and be the vessel for Charles’ truth to help others by telling your story. There are many paths you could have chosen for your healing journey and the one you are on invites so many who are lost to join you to find their own way back to healing. I am so happy for you that you’re making incredible strides in the direction you want to take your future. I am very honored to be a small part of your journey and grateful for your part in mine.

  2. That’s awesome AnneMoss! You have become such a spokesperson and I think that is wonderful, for you and all those you are helping!❤️

  3. I’m excited for you, but know striking out on a new venture is scary, too. You are a passionate voice for suicide prevention/awareness and addiction. We’ve learned much from you already and I’m sure when you put your energy toward this full-time, even more good will result. Looking forward to seeing how it all unfolds!

  4. That’s pretty impressive Anne. I heard those same words on December 20, 2012, and still have no idea what my purpose is on this earth. Nice work! (Because as you know – it’s a lot of work.)

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