How do you get through the day?

This was a question from one of my talks at a high school from a student. So I thought I would answer it here. The young lady meant that after losing my son to suicide, how did I go on?

At first, it was so brutal I couldn’t fathom living through the pain. I would curl up in the bottom of the shower crying and banging on the walls. But I told myself that as bad as it was right then, it would never be as bad as getting the news of my son’s suicide. That part was over and it would never hurt that much again.

And if I survived that, I could survive anything.

It took years to find my footing. It took agonizing patience. It took love and support, journaling, exercise, and mediation. But most of all, it took faith and a belief in hope. After years, I had learned to live with the grief and at the same time find purpose and meaning.

Did I ever not want to go on? I didn’t want to wake up some days. But I didn’t want to end my life. While that’s not uncommon for parents who’ve lost a child to suicide, I never actually had those thoughts, it was simply a general feeling of not wanting to wake up and face the day. Because it made it all real.

coping strategies for grief and loss

Free eBook Coping Strategies for Grief & Loss

Short, easy-to-read strategies for managing the pain of grief by Anne Moss Rogers, Karla Helbert LPC, and contributing author Charlotte Moyler. Download Now.

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Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my youngest son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide 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, 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.

3 thoughts on “How do you get through the day?”

  1. Hello my name is Jennifer Kuykendall and I lost my son Isaiah at the age of 21 on January 6, 2020 to an accidental overdose. I was in recovery at the time for 3 years but I have since then relapsed and am struggling to make some kind of sense of all this. I feel so far away from God right now. He used to be my go to but now all I can do is question him. I need some kind of help so I can help people like myself and my son. I was a recovery coach before I lost him. I have to find my way back to that. It is the only thing I have ever been passionate about and it’s something that is very important to me. Thank you for taking the time to read this.

    1. Oh, Jennifer. I’m so sorry you are struggling with a death and a relapse on top of all that pain. Substance use disorder is so difficult. That’s why they call it a chronic relapse disease. But I know you can find your way back and you do want to. And this note to me is the indication that you want to. Is there something I can do to help or support you?

    2. Jennifer- I am just checking on you to see how you are. I’m concerned. I’m not sure why I came back two weeks later to check but somehow you are on my radar. I hope you respond.

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