The TADS Beacon

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Jeffrey died two years ago today.

Since that day, Deb & I have been through a lot; some of it good, some of it bad; some of it of our own making, and some of it from outside forces.  Some people call us brave and say we’re doing important work; others must think we’ve gone off the deep end.  But we just keep getting up every day and doing the best we can.  Some days, that’s pretty darned good; other days, not so much.

We’ve heard it described that the grief that accompanies suicide is a “complicated grief.”  I don’t know … I think anybody who loses a child must struggle mightily.  I only know that we miss Jeffrey every single day, and miss him deeply.

God help us.

  Read more...
Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November was a very busy month for us and for TADS.

I started the month in Washington on a (real work) business trip and returned home on Nov 2 in time to attend a TADS Board meeting.  I am always heartened after TADS Board Meetings because I am just blown away by the commitment of the Board members.  We try to make these meetings fun – and I think they usually are – and we try to get lots accomplished to meet the needs of our community.  Next month, our Board will mark the last meeting of the year by taking stock of what we have accomplished and looking back at the events of the past year.

At that Nov 2 meeting, we scheduled two sub-committee meetings.  The first to organize the publicity of Project INTERFACE (more on that in a moment) and the second to start our planning for our spring fundraiser – Brighter Days, which will be held on April 21 at the Groton Country Club.  Several of our TADS members have been working behind the scenes throughout the month to get ready to roll out Project INTERFACE and to plan for Brighter Days.

Also in November, I met with the Superintendent of Nashoba Valley Technical High School, Dr. Judith Klimkiewicz, and the Guidance Coordinator, Jobee O'Sullivan.  There were two reasons I wanted to meet with Dr. Klimkiewicz.  The first was to update her on the progress of our documentary, which is being filmed by ...

  Read more...
Saturday, October 22, 2011

When September rolled around, Deb & I were ready to get back to work.  During this month, we focused on some projects in which we collaborated with our sister organization, See A New Sun (SANS).  SANS is led by Barbara Whitcomb of Littleton, who lost her son Bryan to suicide about ten years before Jeff died.  Over the last twenty-two months, Barbara and her husband, Henry, have been like two angels sent to us from heaven.  Barbara runs a suicide survivor support group that I have attended regularly, and Barbara & Henry have become very supportive friends to Deb & me.  Last year, Barbara invited Deb & me to serve on the SANS Board of Directors.

It’s great to have a partner like Barbara Whitcomb.  When we attend regional meetings and state conferences together, I feel like I’m traveling with a celebrity because everybody has a big hello for her.  Barbara has earned this privilege by performing selfless service in this community for several years.

On Saturday, September, 10th, SANS held its annual fundraiser walk and Deb & I participated.  It was a beautiful morning and the turnout was very good.  Our dog, Sydney, joined us for moral support.

On Monday, September 12th, Barbara and I met with representatives from the New England Center for Mental Health (NECMH) to discuss plans to team with them for the National Depression Screening Day (NDSD), which will be held on October 6.  NECMH has ...

  Read more...
Thursday, October 6, 2011

When we first stood up the TADS web site, I had great expectations of writing a monthly blog letter.  Somehow life got in the way and I woke up this morning to realize that my 2nd blog entry is over five months overdue.  So let me try to make amends by looking back month by month.

April

For many months, TADS had been planning for Brighter Days, which was due to arrive on April 9. Brighter Days was our first annual fundraiser – a metaphor not only for the arrival of springtime after a long cold winter, but also for the arrival of hope for people who live in the darkness of depression.  At least that is our hope.

April 9th turned out to be a wonderful day for TADS, and in a very personal way, for Deb & me.

The event was held at the Groton Country Club and Leigh Ann Colvin, the Event Coordinator, could not have been more helpful.  Entertainment was provided by the Indian Hill Big Band.  This band, led by Manual Kaufman, really rocked the house and added a special flair to the event.  To help raise funds, we held a silent auction.  Many businesses and individuals in the Groton area were very generous in donating items for this auction.  The ...

  Read more...
Friday, April 1, 2011

We’re all waiting for spring to arrive, but it’s snowing outside today.  What’s up with that?

I’m glad March is over.  I’ve had several business trips over the past two months and now it’s over – hooray!  When March began, I was in Brussels and sure, that’s a great place to visit.  But March 1st is Jeff’s birthday and I had no access to international telephones and was unable to talk with Deb on Jeff’ birthday.  Fortunately, some good friends looked in on Deb for which I am very grateful.

We also received the news in early March that friends in Groton had lost their son to suicide.  It seems we get such news far too often …

I attended “Carrying On” on the 15th and the Littleton suicide support group on the 14th and 28th.  New people keep showing up to these sessions … this tragedy keeps affecting more and more people …

At the end of the month, I attended an event at UMass Lowell that focused on depression.  I was one of several speakers and I was able to share Jeff’s story, which was poignant for me because Jeffrey was a student at that college when he died.  Also speaking at this event was our friend, Sue Hanley of Westford, who is also ...

  Read more...
Page
1
2