I can't begin to tell you how deeply affected I am about Robin Williams passing. For many reasons...and really. Its not because I am comedic myself or the fact I loved his work as a comedian or actor. Or for his philanthropy. Its because....
I was depressed at one point in my life. I too wanted to die. Different times of my life.
In synopsis. (I rarely if ever speak about ex relationships and try respectfully to say nothing about ex's themselves more situational circumstances.). When my sons mom and I separated. It was the worst time of my life. I had never in my entire life had felt loss like that. It was hard enough to accept the fact my wife no longer wanted to be married to me and I had to own it but my son who was 2, in my life every single day since birth was no taken from me 50% of the time. To this day, I have nor do I think I will ever fully recover from that experience of my son being gone. He is with me 50%(since the day we split) but I am a dad 100%. Always have been always will be as long as I am breathing. Being divorced to her made me appreciate much more what most parents take for granted. Having their children at home everyday. I made a grave mistake once in my life and tried for YEARS to make amends but with my son I have had zero regrets being his dad and raising him into a fine young god fearing man. I am extremely proud of what a great thoughtful kind talented kid he is.For almost 14 years the day he goes back to his moms....there isn't a dry eye in the house.
When his mom and I split, a part of me died. To this day.I have never recovered from that. It wasn't until I started dating someone else that I realised I was depressed and needed to ask for help. I did, sought my doctor, got some anti depressants for 6 months and coping strategies and it worked. I moved on in my life and moved forward. Hating drugs and not drinking helped me greatly because its not uncommon for some to turn to drugs and or alcohol for their depression as a coping mechanism to mask the pain.
Fast forward to my next marriage. (again I do not want to say negative things despite what happened). We had gone through a very traumatic time. My son had been recently mauled by a dog, was dealing with "Night Terrors" ( far different from night mares). His grandfather was ill (passed away that September), we had lost a baby, my wife at the time was in a horrific car accident, and I was dealing with Suicide Headaches without treatment of any kind amongst many other things. When all this was going on. I wasn't depressed. I was saddened, felt like crap, but I still sought joy in life. I still wanted to live, move forward as sad as things were I wasn't depressed. Bummed big time but not depressed. From my 1st marriage I knew what depression was and I was not experiencing it. I did everything I could to find joy in life. When my 2nd marriage dissolved it was almost like a huge weight off my back.
In 2008 is when I was suicidal. Did I cut myself no. Did I tell people? No. If you couldn't see it and knew me then you are blind. I was single at the time. Working 55-60 hours a week(I loved and miss working), but in 3 weeks I had 21 hours sleep. Some days i slept zero and worked 12 hours, some days I slept 1-2 hours. My body was shutting down. I was looking for another job less stressful and it was Christmas time so no jobs were out there and it was the beginning of the recession. I was average 8-15 attacks a day. 4-5 being Kip 10s (on pain scale kip 10 being worst). At the time was the worst time in my life. No one at work believed me that"it can't be that bad", friends didn't believe me. One coward actually said" You didn't have to quit your job...its just a headache, don't complain to me your broke because you quit your job on purpose" , another person left me in a field and drove away while I had an attack because he couldn't bare to see me have an attack. How the "fuck" do you think I felt being left there??? You felt bad watching me? Trying having this attack???Coward. Pffft. If he only knew I was planning my suicide. My funeral. For the 3 hours a day I wasn't getting hammered with attacks, I laid in bed crying, seeing that there was no end to this. No cure and I would die like this. That being sick was an invisible disease that no one believed was true or that bad. That my co workers just didn't get it even after I made a private video on YouTube and shown it to them not for pity but to show "hey this is what happens to me". I thought was my son better off without a dad then a sick dad. I ended up going on planned holidays and the 3rd day my attacks had lifted dramatically and I quit my job. They didn't stop but it helped. I really evaluated my life and lived because of my son. When I say I am here, its because of him. It really is.
My decision to die and stay alive was for me....based on my religion and my son. In Christianity the bible is clear Suicide and you go to hell. Since I was living it...I didn't want to revisit. I have no changed my view about the biblical sense or interpretation of it because if a person is sick mentally like Robin with depression there mental state far outweighs any reasoning to live. They see such darkness, no joy in their life that dying is their only option. They are drowning inside. When I wanted to die, I was not depressed in any way shape or form. I just wanted the pain to stop. I have been chronic since day 1. So I saw no end to my pain. It wasn't depression for me. It was fatigue, and validity. I thought if I died. People would have taken me more seriously. Its only when I had brain surgery a few people said "Wow if his head is being drilled into, maybe it really is that bad...".
I do not believe that any person wanting to die thinks of any repercussions like how bad they will be missed or how it will affect families, how sad it is. All the questions left unanswered or how people blame themselves..."what if I was a better wife, husband, friend etc?". These questions plague us thinking what could we have said or done? Who is to blame? Are they cowards for taking the easy way out? In my humble opinion and having experienced depression myself, having experienced wanting to die myself I can honestly say...its not being a coward. Its to some a means to an end. Am I justifying it? No. For whatever reason people do it, there pain is so embedded deeply inside them and in my opinion only a doctor can possibly help. For me it was counselling and antidepressants when i was depressed. And for when I wanted to die...it was my son and my faith that stopped me. There is nothing I would never do for my son. And I figured that I will continue that promise even having the worlds most painful disease known to medical science.
For whatever Robins final decision to die, or any other person who has committed suicide I will never know. I do know some of their pain. For people like me with my disease. The 3 people who I know about who committed suicide and the 2 I know who survived a suicide attempt because of the pain we endure everyday. I understand why. I may not agree but understand why. People with our pain don't necessarily want to die we just want the pain to stop. As a Christian we are taught that the bible states you will not go to heaven if you commit suicide but I honestly believe if God is Love. Then God will accept those who are sick. I will not cast blame against Robin for taking his own life. His inner demons far outweighed staying alive. Nothing a person without having experienced depression or pain can fully understand. I know this is a touchy subject with a broad range of opinions and circumstances. I hope i haven't upset anyone reading this that has been affected by suicide or depression. But its real and for anyone to dismiss mental illness is the one who needs their head examined.
My wife is bi polar and in recovery. And its real. Her chances of relapse, Her chances or depression are much greater than most. I support everything my wife does and will always be her biggest fan as she is a role model for so many.
For anyone reading this who is either depressed, in recovery, had someone pass, sick like me or has some other disease. Its ok and awesome to seek help. It takes a real man to cry, know when help is needed and ask for help, call someone, phone a friend. Only a physician can prescribe medicine and is best left up to doctors for clinical diagnosis and not self medicating. Whether you are a Christian, a Muslim, A Buddha, a Jehovah, a pet rock worshipper or whatever faith you pray to....talk to your god. I talk to mine all the time. I even get mad ta God. Its a healthy way of staying communicated with God. I seek guidance, understanding and compassion. I don't always understand decisions made in life nor agree with him. But I truly believe I wasn't put on this earth "Just to have the worlds most painful disease and be taught a lesson", I also believe " I am here to teach others". Life is a gift and blessing. Despite my life, what has happened ( I only write 1/3 of actually what has happened to me), its not about all the pain and suffering. Its about the joy in life that happens when I am not suffering. If you are down, bummed, depressed, been recently diagnosed with this disease or another, battling addiction or sad because circumstantial events in your life. There is help. You are not alone. You are not the only one and sadly you won't be the last this happens too. There is help. There is AA/NA meetings globally. There is Doctors to help treat medically, friends, family and many resources out there to help.
In 2008 if you would have asked me if I would have the life I do now....I would say your "fucking nuts". I would...In 6 years I have married my best friend, my unsung hero. I have built a car with my son, travelled to LA, Vegas, Florida, met Jay Leno, made some amazing friends, broken 6 bones, buggered my ankle, had 4 brain surgeries, rescued a dog from death and brought him back to life and lived to tell the tale....its hard to believe what I have seen done and accomplished and have a lot more living to do. Alot more I want to see and do in my life time.
Please reach out today. You are NOT ALONE. There is so many support groups out there. Local meetings, 1-800 #s, doctors, face group pages, online forums, chat rooms, and so much social media out there to provide support to others. Please.....Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
Today, dedicate this blog to Robin Williams. A kind soul who spent his life making others laugh. May he be honored for his life as a comedian, actor and humanitarian for all his philanthropy and let his death be a reminder of how real depression is. Godspeed Robin. RIP. Now the angels are all laughing !
God bless all those others whom have taken their life due to Cluster Headaches or other diseases.