I never knew @gideony. But my twitter feed this afternoon is full of people who did. And I can’t help but feel the weight of their grief. Travis Lee “Gideon” Addington was 30. And Friday, he took his own life.
It was only this morning that I was telling my supervisor about a suicide attempt by a man I was dating, almost exactly sixteen years ago to the day.
My hands are like lead on the keyboard.
So, since it’s the only thing I can clumsily think to do, here are some resources. I’ve rearranged them so that the musical ones are at the top and the informational ones are at the bottom
Gideon worked with this Tulsa non-profit, Neighbors along the line, which has a food pantry, GED training, and senior outreach, among other thing.
When I’m in pain, when I can’t think straight, I turn to songs that I listened to in high school, when I was heavy into 70’s singer/songwriters.
Here’s a bit of Carole King:
When you’re down and troubled
And you need some loving care
And nothing, nothing is going right
Close your eyes and think of me
And soon I will be there
To brighten up even your darkest night
And a bit of Simon and Garfunkel:
When you’re down and out
When you’re on the street
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you
Turn up the music. Go for a walk. Journal. Do whatever it is that you do to get a little bit normal.
If you are one of the ones grieving, read this. It talks about self-care, which is so important. You can’t do anything for the person who is gone, but you have to take care of yourself. Grieve, but stay grounded. Journal, if that helps. Go for coffee with a friend, if that helps. “Don’t let anyone tell you how to feel, and don’t tell yourself how to feel either.” Grief is at once universal and individual.
If you are helping someone who is grieving a suicide, read this. That’s me, right now. I don’t know most of the people who are grieving, you are all either virtual friends, virtual strangers, or someone I may have met once. I am afraid of saying the wrong thing, I feel helpless, awkward. In this new world, we do feel grief for people we’ve never met, and compassion towards people we’ve only talked to online.
If you are contemplating suicide, read this. It’s a long letter, but it talks you through some of the things you might be thinking about.
I hope that what ever your circumstances or your connection to Gideon, you have someone you can talk to, someone that will catch you when you are muddled, tired, and not sure where to turn with the feelings all twisted inside.
Please send memorial donations to Transition House.
#gideony …Iron Gate is a charity that was close to Gideon’s heart. They serve food to the homeless 365 days of the year, every morning.
#gideony In about a month, I will close Gideon’s twitter and facebook accounts. I will likely leave his websites and blogs up until their…
#gideony …until his subscriptions lapse. If you would like to save any of his tweets/posts/anything of the sort, be sure to do it soon
Any errors of omission or commission or incorrect information are mine. Please correct me in the comment box and I’ll update this post with information as it comes in.
This post was put together using your tweets mostly, so thank you. A special thanks to Brian Merritt.
*from “You’ve Got a Friend,” by Carole King
A memorial post by Jonathan Brink, The Loss of a Virtual Friend.
Fierce Goodbye: A faith based perspective on suicide: a documentary on suicide with insights from Protestant, Catholic, Jewish and Greek Orthodox theologians, and scholars and people working in the mental health field.
What does the Bible say about suicide? by Dr. James T. Clemons. From a review by Paul Quinnett: “For those of us hoping to fully understand suicidal behavior in the largely Judeo-Christian world here in North America, knowing that the Bible does not condemn suicide is critical to helping break down the stigma, fear and ignorance that surrounds and impedes our efforts to prevent suicide.”