Here’s your daily dose of sweetness.
Maclean’s series — “Before You Go” — collects letters from people to friends and family members, “because we shouldn’t have to wait until it’s too late to tell our loved ones how we really feel,” the Canadian magazine says.
A few friends of Daphnee Levesque, a British Columbia college student, have tried to take their own lives, so in the most recent installment, she writes them letters.
Then she writes this one to everyone else:
We live in a world where there are no guarantees. But when many of your friends have tried to take their own lives, you become painfully aware of life’s betrayals and uncertainty.
Every day, 11 people in our country die by suicide. In Canada, it is one of the leading cause of death in young people. Not everybody has to live with this kind of reality, but I know almost 20 people who have attempted suicide. So every relationship comes with a risk, and these friendships are no exceptions.
That scares me. I’m scared that one day, I will lose one of them. I’m scared of waking up one morning to unbearable news. At times, I have pictured their funerals, written their eulogies inside my head, and found myself so worried for them that I prayed I would wake up the next day and find them still alive. And I’m scared they will be gone before I have the chance to tell them how much they matter to me.
I’ve been there myself, after all—and when you suffer from a mental illness yourself, the commitments you make to the people you love become further complicated by the complex truths of the darkness you experience firsthand. But this is a risk I choose to live with every day—and I have never once regretted it.
Regardless of what kind of headspace I’m in, I have always believed in their ability to recover and be their healthy, resilient, fierce and kind selves again.
My friends and loved ones: No matter what, I will always choose the side of life over your deaths by suicide. Your lives make my life worth living.
To her support group, she wrote:
You are extraordinary people with integrity, depth, wit, and empathy. You follow your passions to study clinical psychology, social work, medicine and nursing. That’s a good thing: The world needs minds like yours to bring the change that our system so desperately needs.