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Christmas Nutcracker

Black Friday

“My son’s nutcrackers decorate the mantle. Nothing else is really needed.”

It’s the day after Thanksgiving. Known as Black Friday to retailers, the economy and bargain hunters. To Suicide Survivors it is just another Black Day we move through without someone very dear that we lost in an unimaginable way.

This Thanksgiving I reminded myself that I am thankful for having my youngest son Adam in my life for 22 years. That I would rather have those 22 years with him than not to have had him at all. I am thankful for my surviving sons as they make me want to be strong. I give thanks for the friends and family who love and stick by me. After my tragic loss I am forever thankful for this forum as it gives me a place to speak, to be heard and to be understood. Alliance of Hope has been my lifeline and I am at a point in my life where I can listen and try to offer compassion and understanding as well. I seek now to listen more as I realize what a gift that can be to others.

This weekend I decorate for the holidays. It is another sign of my survival. My son’s nutcrackers decorate the mantle. Nothing else is really needed. No reason to add to it as each piece is a reminder of him and the love and joy he brought us. He is always with us and we celebrate him all year round.

This Black Friday I light a candle as I do every day. I give thanks for Adam and my surviving sons, for true friends and loving family, and for the AOH community of support. I am a suicide survivor and I am as loving as I am strong. I’ve come a long way and know others have too. So here’s to us…the compassionate and strong survivors who hope to help others make it through the Blackest of Days.

Originally published by Audrey Crilley on the Alliance of Hope Forum for Suicide Loss Survivors and reprinted with permission.