Let me tell you about the worst pain I’ve felt in my life.
I have fibromyalgia (Latin for "we don't have a clue what's wrong with you)", I’ve had over 30 operations on my teeth and jaws, I spent 11 years in orthodontic braces, I used to get cluster headaches, I cracked a pelvis, broken a rib, and I broke my right ankle. Three times. Seems I have a weak spot there. And I grew up in the era of corporate punishment in school. I got more jacks than warm meals.
All those put together does not come close to the pain I felt the day I received a text message informing me that my best friend committed suicide.
I wanted to puke but it hurt too much. I thought I’d cry, instead, I collapsed against the wall and made unintelligible hooting noises. The closest thing I can describe my physical state was “panic”. My mental state: it could politely be termed as a fucking mess.
It was quite simply the worst thing I’ve ever felt. I’ve carried many coffins to their graves, but somehow, the other people whom I loved and then died, was “okay”. From car crashes to old age to illnesses, and even a murder. These were easier to deal with, if only by a matter of degree. But the thought of my buddy, at the ripe old age of 20, deciding to clock out, was too much for me to bear.
It is almost four years now, and not a day goes by where I do not think about her. I doubt I will ever get over it. Some days I want to cry, some days I’m nostalgic, some days I’m just sad, and some days, I want to grab her by the lapels and scream at her just what the hell was she thinking?
No one should ever feel this way.
And to that end, I have realised that as much as I’m not one for causes, I do have a cause: keeping people alive. In doing so, I have donated, and will continue to donate, a portion of my profits to saving lives. Some of the sales of my books, and if I have a bit of extra money from shoots, goes towards organisations that help prevent suicide.
Depression is a bitch. It is a disease with a terminal stage. If I can prevent just one person from entering the terminal stage, if together we can save just one life, then it would be worth it.
And if you do not have work for me, or do not want to buy either of my books, I ask you to please donate to SADAG, or any other organisation of your choice.
That way we can keep people alive to share their gifts, and by sharing their gifts, we can change the world, one shot at a time.