It’s been 10 years since I lost my mom to suicide.
It can still be hard to talk about because I don’t want the way I lost my mom to define the way she lived her life. My mom struggled with mental health, but she was more than her struggle. She was a mother, a wife, and a sister. Her favorite flowers were lilacs. Her favorite season was fall. She loved James Taylor and New England mountains and trips to the movies. She taught me about love, acceptance, and empathy, and through her battle with depression, she showed me how resilience is learned. I am the woman I am today because of the way my mom raised me.
While everyone's story is different, stigmas and shame surrounding suicide loss can make it tough to talk about, but I believe sharing our stories – however difficult it may be – is essential to understanding suicide and preventing it. For that reason, I decided to share my story by running the 2020 Boston Marathon for Samaritans, a nonprofit whose mission is to prevent suicide and provide hope.
If you can, please join me in fundraising to support Samaritans’ life-saving work. Every donation will go to Samaritans to help fund the resources they offer to the community, including a 24-7 helpline, free suicide prevention workshops, and SafePlace grief support meetings. Through these services, Samaritans helps address the complex causes of suicide. They provide hope to those who may feel alone or helpless in a battle against suicide, whether it is personal or alongside a loved one.
My mom may have been struggling, but she was strong. She may have lost a battle, but she fought for decades. I am honored to have the opportunity to run the Boston Marathon in her memory and in support of Samaritans, in hopes that more people may find the resources, community, or support they need to push back the darkness. As Samaritans’ mission states: You are not alone.
Thank you all so much for your support. And thanks especially to my dad, Dorothy, Allison, Mike, Agasthya, and my close friends who have all supported me in immeasurable ways in both this undertaking and in life.
This one's for you, Mom. Thank you for raising me to find strength and embrace empathy. I will always love you.