The hearse entered the gates of the cemetery, followed by an almost endless stream of cars each one heading to the cremation of a lost friend.
Every person was shocked at the turn out of well wishers and mourners, there were hundreds of people in attendance.
Somberly each seat inside was filled with people until there was standing room only. The sound of a river of tears could be heard as the coffin was slowly brought into the crematorium.
A lone figure was sat on his own in the back of the room, no one acknowledged him as he arrived and he could not see anything of the service, just hearing the vicar conducting the ceremony. There were so many faces he recognised as he scanned the room, people he considered friends as well as family. All shedding tears at the sadness and sudden loss of the person they had all come to say goodbye to.
He could make out snippets of conversations from people each one asking the same question, none of them able to come up with an answer.
A few people stood in front of the gathered people and spoke about how much they would miss the deceased, how wonderful he was, kind and considerate he was truly loved dearly by those who struggled to speak. In between tears the general consensus of the people here was that this person had so much to offer the world and his loss would be felt by everyone in attendance.
Finally a voice he could hear clearly, it was his mother speaking. He could not understand why she was so upset. She spoke about the sadness of finding this person dead in his house, an overdose of pills and alcohol. The empty feeling in her heart that the suicide had caused her.
Suddenly the voice became quiet, he could not make out what she was saying. He wanted to reach out and hold his mum in her time of need. He fought his way to the front of the room and stood still in horror. The photo on top of the coffin was him! He was attending his own funeral and seeing the devastation first hand that his death had caused.
“Where were all you people when I needed you?” he screamed.
“Why didn’t any of you contact me when I was alive and desperate?” he was becoming angrier at the people who had neglected him while he suffered in silence. Yet they had all come to say goodbye.
By the time he realised how loved he was by so many people it was too late!
He wished they had taken five minutes out of their lives to be there for him, a quick phone call, a surprise visit, an invitation to a night out. Any of those things may have prevented this tragedy but they were all too busy for him.
As “Abide with me” played and the coffin disappeared behind the curtain the man headed outside to the bright light that was calling his name.
He took one last look at the people crying and wished he could’ve had the chance to undo this all.
Today is world suicide prevention day!
This story is my little way of saying that maybe that person you have not spoken to for weeks or months may be desperate for your call. Life is too short as it is without feeling so alone that the only option you feel is suicide.