This past Saturday we walked in the Richmond Out of the Darkness Walk to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). I've worked with the local chapter of AFSP for a number of years as we are both members of the Chesterfield Suicide Awareness and Prevention Coalition, a group of local organizations working to increase the coordination of suicide prevention and awareness activities in Chesterfield through educational programs, community outreach and media efforts. Love Never Ends was a sponsor for the Walk, and we were able to help raise money to help prevent suicide in the local community.
This is one of the ways that helps me heal from my grief. In my role as a suicide prevention advocate, I have been able to tell Mark's story to many audiences from TV and radio interviews, to speaking engagements, to online presentations. When I hear that someone has turned away from suicide as a result of hearing Mark’s story, I feel fulfillment. The fact that I have helped to save someone’s life helps me to heal the pain that I was unable to save my own son’s life.
Finding ways to help and serve others helps to take the focus off of our own personal pain. Helping others can also provide purpose and meaning in our grief journey, and guide us to a place where we can live with the grief of losing our child. If you are at a place in your grief where you want to help others, I highly recommend it. Look for opportunities in your church, your community, non-profit organizations, or local government where volunteers are needed. There are so many opportunities available, and you will feel fulfilled and find meaning when you are giving back in the right place.