By: Petra Dotson
Hard to start your story with my husband committed suicide. However, that is in fact what happened to my family and I. As a result of a job loss, Blake fell in to a deep depression for which he could not come out of and he took his life on August 4, 2014. At the time our children were 10 and 11 years old and I was the sole care taker for my elderly mother suffering from cancer. Needless to say it was a horrible tragedy for my children and I. I had been through so many emotions from being confused, angry, guilty and just plain sad. Unless it actually happens to you –you cannot understand the pain, sorrow or loss you feel.
Initially after Blake’s death I was a zombie….just trying to function with everyday life tasks. Somehow I rose out of my zombie state and for that I thank my children, family and friends. I also have to thank my mom. The purpose of this “I am” project is to celebrate the power of women. Well I am here to celebrate my mom up in heaven. I celebrate her strength and power for that is what made me who I am today. I was showered with unconditional love but man that woman was tough! That toughness showed me that life sometimes has tragedies and you cannot let that tragedy take over your life. Not ever. Always move forward. Not saying this is easy but this is what you must do.
As hard as it sounds I knew life had to go on for me and for my kids. I stopped questioning why and what I could have done different because truthfully there was never a good answer. Soooooo I moved forward by forcing myself to do things I didn’t want to do and getting back in to the “real world”. From tragedy, you learn things whether good or bad. Although my life is not always easy I am at a good place right now and I am so thankful.
I will say, throughout this tragedy I have learned that children are incredibly resilient. They have a power they are not even aware of. The love for my two little critters has kept me strong. Of course, the support of family and friends is so incredibly important as well. So many lessons learned but I think one of the most important things I have learned is to live in the moment. Try and pocket your worry and make your life count and live every day like it’s your last. Wish I could tell you I am able to do this all the time but I promise you that I am trying my best!! Just know, you are not guaranteed tomorrow so live for today.