This is what I live for. It doesn’t get better than this

It’s letters like these that make my life worth living since Charles’ suicide. Warning. It will make you cry. A good cry. It is so thoughtful and well written. If the author is out there, thank you. This truly defines my purpose. I have removed identifying information to protect the sender’s identity. 

Mrs. Rogers,

I have tried writing to you many times, but have felt like it may be inappropriate for me to reach out to you because I had so little interaction with Charles, but I’ve been keeping up with your blog and after reading about how Charles was … Read more...

Silver Lining by Charles Aubrey Rogers

Every-CloudThis rap song, Silver Lining, is on Sound Cloud. But I wrote out the words a while back so I’d have them. He recorded it with his friend Max Richards, a very talented musician who is doing the “beats”. He recorded it in 2014 while at Wasatch Academy in Utah. The recorded version is on an instrument microphone. 

By Charles Aubrey Rogers, Reezin the Revolutionary– 4/26/1995-6/5/2015

Woke up with not enough sleep
Got to breakfast, too late to eat
Still managed to get a stain on my favorite shirt
Every day’s stress, what’s next?
the news plays … Read more...

Addiction: The broken reward system

I went to the COBE event at VCU, Virginia Commonwealth University and saw Dr. Kevin McCauley speak (the dude seriously needs a decent online bio).

For many years, Charles and I had a discussion about his “thrill seeking” which I never felt was quite the right phrase since he wasn’t skiing backwards down black diamond ski slopes.

At one point Charles and I had a discussion that perhaps his brain didn’t make endorphins and made too much adrenalin (since he suffered from anxiety).

When Dr. McCauley said “broken reward system” in his presentation, I thought I hit the … Read more...

Redefining the meaning of ‘the first birthday’

This is not my son’s first birthday. It’s the first birthday since he died. He would have been 21.

Years ago, I dreamed we would be in a better place with Charles–with his depression and addiction. His sleep disorder, his anxiety, his ADHD. We worked so hard at it.

Instead we are grappling with his suicide. I still can’t believe it some days.

As I look back, I see things I didn’t see before.

I can’t even tell you how much I miss him. How much this hurts. I know you know that.

His birthday is my connection to him … Read more...

Family Matters – a rap by Charles Aubrey Rogers

(aka Reezin the Revolutionary)

Granbobby used to make my card disappear,
and pull a quarter out of my ear,
Momma how’d I end up here?
Life was so different,
I was so innocent,
Who knew I’d ever act like a criminal,
My love for you is far from minimal
Daddy was my hero,
He’s who I wanted to be like,
Taught me how to ride a bike,
Taught me how to live my life.
But you know me,
I never listen to advice.

I write this for family,
The ones I see on holidays annually,
I’m grateful for everything … Read more...

Musical heart – #griefheart number 8

#griefheart Musical heart #8
Musical heart

“I found my place amongst these beats
And my passion with these stanzas.”
–Charles Aubrey Rogers, 1995-2015

This one is inspired by two songs I thought were lost forever. Charles loved his rap music. He was rarely spotted without those earphones around his neck or earbuds in his ears.

The iPod pictured is one we got for him in 8th grade. He loved it. It held tens of thousands of songs. These are what helped him cope and inspired his writing. You might think of rap music as “bad” but I think without it, Charles would have exited a long … Read more...

Charles always reached out

Charles at Wasatch Academy in Utah

If there was one consistent theme about Charles, it was that he always reached out. He reached out to kids who were not always visible to others and to ones who were highly visible as well.

He put himself at risk socially doing this. But unlike other kids his age, he didn’t care.

He’d put himself on the line and stand up for other kids who had no friends at all or had tons of friends. Kids that felt isolated or depressed or were having a hard time with something in their lives. Kids … Read more...

A Rap Song from Charles about Snack Time. #humor

Charles loved sweets. Loved snacks. Loved little convenience stores. He would stand at that aisle and take forever to make a choice.

His earliest addiction was sugar. I can remember finding a bunch of packages of candy under his bed when he was around 8-10 years old and then sitting on the bed crying. I knew it had to be a precursor to addiction. Then I thought I could do something about it which I couldn’t.

Although he was the funniest human being I ever met, he doesn’t have many funny or lively songs.

The Rap Diary after all, was … Read more...

Charles’ Diagnosis from Wilderness

Document attachments are at the very bottom

05-21-12 CR
By this time, Charles had softened a bit. He was showing us the picture we sent of his dog Andy. Still our dog.

Many of you are currently dealing with a child (however old) with an mental illness. It was difficult for some reason to get a diagnosis in writing.

Time and again someone would start to treat him without a true assessment. Wilderness, 2nd Nature in Clayton, Georgia gave us that.

During his stay there, we had weekly one hour meetings by phone with his counselor. We also received letters from Charles … Read more...