Remembering that we are not alone- and in memory

young deansm
Be at peace

Life is about change and loss.  Because I am learning more about Buddhism I am understanding this more, and as I get older I get more philosophical too.   I struggled with whether to post on this heavy subject but a good friend called me up last week with the very sad news of her sister’s suicide. This is also an anniversary for my family and one we would rather not have to endure.  My friend is beating herself up thinking she could have done something to stop this tragedy from happening.  Sometimes friends and family members don’t see it coming and are left with terrible anguish and guilt.

Many people in our society today suffer from mood disorders, bipolar disorder and depression being among them, and  many of those suffering often try to mask the pain somehow and often in ways that can make it worse. Many don’t seek professional help.   For some the ultimate solution is suicide and the terrible finality forever changes those who are left behind.

psa

To my beautiful brother,

Oh, I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain. I’ve seen sunny days that I thought would never end.
I’ve seen lonely times when I could not find a friend,
but I always thought that I’d see you, one more time again.

– James Taylor

and as your old school mate said: “his smile made everyone want to be his friend”

I can’t believe that it’s been three years. It’s not easier.  I  am always reminded by the songs, With or Without You  By U2, Everybody Hurts by REM, the Rolling Stone concert, and of course how can we ever forget Comet Hale Bop that we awaited (and the aliens); our visit to the Buddhist monastery; your off the wall jokes and your beautiful horses. Your last gift to me, after witnessing my crazy aviary was a picture of two parrots on a rainbow which hangs in my room close to your Buddha.dean&carolweddingsoft.mono

You so loved life, your music, your longtime love from high school,Carol, the outdoors, traveling,  your snug as a bug log house in the woods, your stained glass studio and more. Yet so much I didn’t know, so much I wanted to ask you, so much I didn’t tell you!! One thing I do know is that you touched many and were loved by so many, your heartbroken family and good friends, at home and abroad.

Musician, Traveler, Artisan, Rancher, Friend, son, brother and husband

We still ask why but- Om mane padme hum my bro

though fire be mixed with your dust

yet care you not

For now all is well with you!!

Remembering always

Everybody Hurts- REM (played at your memorial)

Buddhist prayer flag - the windhorse and you on the kit
Buddhist prayer flag – the windhorse

And you on your kit with the boys at the club in Thailand performing U2’s with or without you

this smaller drum kit was given to the kids you were teaching to drum at the Thai orphanage

you pondering the tigers and a  prayer ceremony for you in Bangkok

You are  off traveling again but we wish you were here!!

81 Comments Add yours

    1. thank you George!

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    1. beautiful! thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. So sad that you suffered such a terrible loss. What a fine looking young man, and a beautifully heartfelt tribute to him. Very brave and caring of you to share this so others who have suffered the same loss can find a place to connect and reminisce.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you for reading and commenting! It got easier to talk about as time went on but the sadness never goes away! Sadly, many people have gone through this.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes sadly this is true.. a family member nearly lost someone to suicide but fortunately he found her in time. Wish it could have been the same for your brother.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. me too! but it wasn’t meant to be I guess. We will see him again.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yes… he is no doubt always in your heart. I hope you don’t mind but I wrote a discussion and a piece of flash inspired by the post about your brother. It’s on my blog: https://kyrosmagica.wordpress.com/2016/06/02/writespiration99-burnt-edges-suicide-burns/

        Liked by 1 person

      4. yes, that’s fine Marje. I hope it’s helpful in some way.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi thank you so much for stopping by my Blog and for the Follow! I am so grateful and I came here for a visit to yours and I found a very interesting Blog I decided to Follow 🙂 I hope that you enjoy my art. I like your beautiful images and I am looking forward to your future posts – Cheers Carolina

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will be visiting your lovely blog as well. I see you write poetry! I write short stories (or try to) Thanks so much for your follow too!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are very welcome! I am an artist that love to express creativity in many different ways 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  3. DG MARYOGA says:

    At long last I managed to visit your blog and enjoy some of your recent wonderful posts,but I noticed your brother’s photo on the right space of your blog and I felt like coming by as I could very well remember about the loss.Actually,you had mentioned something about this sad event in one of your previous posts.
    Life and Death are so close and we don’t really know if a new life begins after the departure … Awesome work and tribute dearest Cybele.If you remember him,you keep him alive,he has never gone,he is in your thoughts,in your heart …
    I watched the Thailand video with him on You Tube … I am so sorry,
    Thanks for sharing your sentiments with us.Take care xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. your comment is so thoughtful and so compassionate. Thank you for reading and for your words of comfort! Yes, I miss him!! And he was so loved by many!! Blessings my dear friend!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My brother went the same way… Stay strong!

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    1. It’s taken time to come to terms and you never really “get over it.” Many blessings to you too!!

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      1. Thanks. Have a great weekend!

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      2. you too!!1 🙂

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  5. aishasoasis says:

    Writing is the best therapy, isnt it, Cybele, thank you so much for sharing. Your writing reaches so many people and your life, altho shaped by sad events, is truly a blessing to me and I’m sure many others. Love and hugs to you, dear ♥♥♥ ;^)

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    1. You are so right!! Of course life is about loss too and moving forward as you have done as well!! Thank you for such encouraging words! God’s(Allah) blessings on you !!

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  6. This pain is often too difficult to cope with. However, amidst the inevitability of life moving on and our own fears and hesitations, we recall the smiles, the gestures and cherish those moments. ❤

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    1. thanks Lizzie, you are so right!!

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  7. suzjones says:

    I am so sorry for your loss my dear. Words are never enough when someone you love takes their own life (or attempts it as has happened with someone I love).

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    1. thanks Suz! I appreciate your supportive words!

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  8. Dear Cybele,
    I am so sorry for your loss. No one would take such drastic action if not in the worst pain, and the nature of depression, I’m told, is that when someone is caught up in it, they can’t see their way out of it and they feel that it will never pass. My father committed suicide when I was eight leaving my mother alone with seven young children. I forgave long ago, but quietly observe the anniversary of his death each year.

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    1. oh that is harsh for an eight year old. Blessings to you! My brother didn’t have children but I so miss his wonderful humour. Christmases are strange now. It’s also strange that Robin Williams, a very funny man took the same path. I remember my brother with his beloved horses, playing music and soccer and his huge bear hugs! I can’t bear to think of the pain he must have felt at the end. He is still with us. Thank you so much for commenting! Namaste!!

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      1. Dear Cybele,
        It is a harsh reality for a loving sister of any age. But we can honor their memory by remembering the hugs and music of their lives. Thank you for sharing your story.

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      2. Thank you so much for your kindness Naomi!

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  9. Healing Grief says:

    A beautiful post and tribute to your brother. In sharing we can heal, and allow others to share their pain too. We are all connected in our pain and our joy.

    You have much to give others.

    Karen

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    1. thanks so much Karen!! You are so right.

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  10. Ross Duncan says:

    A beautiful post under very sad circumstances, my thoughts are with you

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  11. So sorry for your loss Cybele and that of your friend, sending you best wishes.

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    1. thank you Andrea!! much appreciated!

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  12. Maria F. says:

    My heart goes out to you both.

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  13. robert87004 says:

    We come to realize that loss changes us forever, and in some ways we become brothers and sisters in loss. I agree, Buddhism seems to hold some of the answers we seek, though my studies are less than formal. I wish the best for you and your friend too, as we all must find our own, individual paths to light.

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    1. thank you Robert and indeed we must. I actually combine a few beliefs though I’m very drawn to Buddhist philosophy.

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  14. Peter Nena says:

    Change and loss. Inevitabilities. Though sad.

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    1. Thank you for commenting Peter. It’s a difficult path sometimes!!

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  15. Dear Cybele, I’m so sorry for your loss. Thanks for sharing. I pray for comfort for you and your friend.

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    1. I appreciate your prayers and sentiments. Thank you!!

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  16. FeyGirl says:

    Countless blessings to you and your family, during this time — my heart goes to you. I too live with this fear in a dearest loved one, and just today news reached me from a friend — her good friend is now gone, so young and special. My heart broke. Thank you for sharing your own personal story and continued love; and may it reach those seeking hope.

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    1. Thank you so much Fey, I ‘m so touched by yours and other’s responses!!

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  17. I’ve travelled close to the void myself at times. Whenever I was at my most desperate was when I hid it most from those around me. I’m so sorry for your loss Cybele!

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    1. Sarah, we must try never to give up hope. Many blessings and thanks to you for sharing this!!

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      1. Learning to love oneself is one of the hardest lessons in life! Thank you for making space for us to share and talk about our own experiences.

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      2. it is isn’t it!! And yet that is where it begins! You are welcome and thank you so much for your feedback!!

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  18. Embracing a Wounded Soul says:

    I wrote a comment here but there was a message error. I’m sorry for you loss and pain. Thanking for sharing this will everyone. I live with this fear myself . . . from one I hold very dear. I hope people will begin to show more compassion and understanding. Bringing awareness is a start. ((hugs)) my dear . . . Sam.

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    1. thank you so much for your supportive words!!

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  19. Embracing a Wounded Soul says:

    This made me cry as my love my best friend suffers from consuming sadness at times, always speaking of pain unbearable enough to leave those that he loves so dear. Tortured at times over feelings of being unworthy . . . I know it’s not his fault just as my pain from PTSD is not mine. I am sorry for the pain you feel, mental illness or depression is not properly cared for in society. My heart, love and healing goes out to you.

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    1. Blessings and prayers for you too!!

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  20. Emilio Pasquale says:

    I married into a large family with two siblings who have suicidal tendencies. It has not been easy trying to give emotional support to my wife when we get a call in the middle of the night! Thank you for sharing.

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    1. thank you for sharing too!! Blessings!

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  21. Arl's World says:

    I am sorry to hear of your friend’s sister’s suicide. And I am so so sorry to hear that you lost your brother. It is always hard to accept the loss of a loved one. I had a friend, that I grew up with (went to school with) kill herself in May. It is just so devastating. I still am having a hard time believing it. This is a beautiful post …it brought tears to my eyes. And I have always loved that song by James Taylor. Thanks so much for sharing.

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    1. You’re welcome and thank you for your kind words!

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      1. Arl's World says:

        You are welcome 🙂

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  22. Amy says:

    Thank you for making such effort of sharing your sentiment and memories, Cybele.

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  23. How brave you are to share these tragic losses, Cybele. I’m so very sorry for your loss. It’s impossible to understand how young people can be in so much pain and devastating to realize finally that they were. When my children were younger we lived through the suicides of four of their friends, and I felt their losses as if each were one of my own. Still think about them 15 years later. Nothing sadder in the world. This has been a poignant and beautiful post. Thank you.

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    1. Thank you Debbie, He had been through some hard times, he wasn’t a kid but he was much too young to die. He was loved and had so much to give. I can’t bear the thought of teenagers or the very young being in such pain either when life is just beginning.

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  24. It’s so sad that someone can get into such a dark place and men in particular are in a habit of retreating to their caves in silence to bear things alone. I’ve known a few people who’ve committed suicide and several of them have left notes behind saying to their loved ones “You’ll be better off without me”. I think that even if they had voiced this in advance, they wouldn’t have believed anyone who’d argued otherwise.

    Your brother looks the sweetest and most gentle soul in his photo. I’m so, so sorry Cybele about him having left you this way, but there was most likely nothing you could do to prevent this tragedy. I know my husband couldn’t with his previous wife.

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    1. thank you so much for this Sarah!! Your husband was touched by it. Do you know Bran in my tales is the mischievous boy that I remember my brother to be!! He had a killer smile and a killer humour. It’s a selfish act, because we are left behind to live with it forever!! while he is at peace. But I know the pain is so bad they don’t think about anything else. And that’s the anguish too. I hate that so many young (teenage) people contemplate this. We do have to be aware.

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  25. Robyn G says:

    Thanks so much for sharing yours and your brother’s story Cybele.. And Im deeply sorry for your loss.. You and those left behind, not so long ago xox
    We are shaped by losing friends and loved ones.
    Typed words cant say enough. Hugs!

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    1. I so appreciate your words Robyn. Thanks!

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  26. jamiechristinephotography says:

    I am so sorry for the loss of your brother and for the loss of your friends sister. My son struggled with severe depression for many years. I always feared I would loose him to suicide. I lost him 3 months ago, today to a motorcycle accident. And you are right, it changes those left behind in deeper ways than we could ever fathom.

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    1. thank you Jamie. I know you understand.

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  27. lauramacky says:

    That is such sad news. I’m sorry to hear about your friend’s sister and of course you know I’m very sorry about your brother. It’s never easy when someone is lost at a young age especially from suicide. I’m a little bit of this and a little bit of that when it comes to spiritual/religious teachings but I still do believe prayer is a powerful thing. BIG HUGS and lots of prayers…..

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    1. I felt compelled to post it as this is something that has shaped me too. Thank you so much Laura. I am also a bit of this and that too in spirituality! Prayers for you too!

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      1. lauramacky says:

        You’re so welcome and thanks much for the prayers too!

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  28. It’s been 16 years since I lost one of my closest friends. What did I miss? Could I have done anything different? Did I betray him somehow? I still miss him…his smile, his relentless teasing, his beautiful eyes. I forgave both us long time ago, but I still miss him.
    It is a beautiful thing that you found some kind of solace in Buddhism, we find healing in unexpected things.

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  29. sixpixx says:

    It’s sad… I have no words…

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    1. It is very sad six!! But something compelled me to post it. It’s something that has shaped me. Thank you for commenting.

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      1. sixpixx says:

        You’re helping by making it more socially acceptable to discuss these things for those that want to. You’re being very brave.

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      2. thank you so much Six!! My tuatha tales are touched by this as well it seems! But life still fills me with joy and gratitude in many ways and that includes having had my brother and so many others in my life. I still find the magic!

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  30. Beautiful thoughts and sentiments. Thanks for sharing your memories.

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