I want to preface this post by telling you that I have Dysthymic Disorder, a type of depression that results in a nearly constant depressed mood that lasts for years. I’ve had this since I was almost 16, and have only recently (the past year) gotten treatment for it that has really helped alleviate the symptoms of depression, for the most part.
I post this confession first because the past two weeks, I’ve felt a return of some of the symptoms. We all have bad days; anyone will tell you that. Even while on medication for the past year, I’ve had days where I’ve been blue, but I know that a good night’s sleep usually helps and that the next day should be better. The next day usually is better.
The past two weeks haven’t been a constant string of bad days, though. I finally figured out that it was my yearly Christmas funk and some added stress at work, and have been doing what i can to combat both things.
This morning, I was pushed over the edge into tears upon learning that our mayor was found dead in his home when he failed to show up for a court appearance. According to the local news, he apparently died of a self-inflicted gun shot wound.
I didn’t know the man. I don’t know his family or friends. What I know is that he left behind an elderly mother, some other family and friends.
I am saddened that a man who still had a lot of life left in him thought that temporary circumstances (a possible jail term of a few years) might be more important than those many years of life he had left. I am angry at him for leaving behind family and friends who would rather see him alive and incarcerated than dead and unavailable to love. I am angry at him for taking his life when millions of people around the world — hell, probably thousands of people in Springfield — suffer from depression silently, day after day, and combat the suicidal thoughts that plague them.
I’ve had suicidal thoughts. That’s what happens when you live with depression long enough. I lived through them. I know others who have lived through them. Maybe our former mayor was clinically depressed and no one knew it. But I’m angry at him for taking his life because he did a disservice to those people who live with and suffer through suicidal thoughts, and he took away a son, a family member, and a friend, all because he wanted to keep out of jail.
I am angry at you, Mr. Davlin. I am angry at myself for this being the news that set me on a crying jag when other things haven’t, like all the people dying of hunger all over the world. I am angry at myself for being so angry over your death when I didn’t even know you. I am sad for you, Mr. Davlin, and sad for your family and friends, especially the mother who gave birth to you, watched you grow up, and now cries for the son she lost. As I shed tears for you, I pray for you, your mom, family and friends. I pray that you are with the Lord now, that He has welcomed you into His loving arms and told you that it’s going to be OK, and I pray that He will comfort the people you left behind.
rest in peace.