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  • Emerging Ally

Ode to a Friend

So we drove home from a nice visit with family. My son drove the whole way giving me a much needed break. I got a chance to look out at the scenery for a change. Usually I see things fleetingly from the drivers seat. All the greenery. But it’s winter and the leaves are down. So I got a chance to look more closely and see what was behind the facade. I saw the broken branches, the downed limbs, the less than perfect. The pain.

On our drive the mother of a work friend called. He committed suicide over the Christmas weekend.

He was much younger. We would chat about work experience and I would Try to give advice about situations. He loved to talk baseball and was knowledgeable on baseball analytics and would pass along thoughts on that. We chatted 3 weeks ago. He was between jobs but had two offers and wanted some advice. He told me he was going to start a role in January.

He left a note about how much pain he was in. Evidently he had been battling medical issues and had been dealing with physical pain for years. I never knew. He decided to end the pain.

His note had a list of 10 people for his parents to call. I was on the list. She was fulfilling his wishes. We talked for a while. I didn’t know what to say. But I listened. It seems like he hid the pain.

You can see all the foliage and all the beauty but sometimes it’s what behind the scenes that matters. Reach out. Don’t assume the flowers on the outside mean nothing is broken on the inside.

Thank you for listening.

All the best,

Dave Terné

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1 Comment

Jianyu Chen
Jianyu Chen
Jan 15, 2022

I wish I had the right words. 😢Being chronically ill is such a lonely and exhausted experience, particularly if you are young and don't look sick. People might think you are being lazy and faking it, so you hide it to fit in and meet others' expectations but doing that take a toll both emotionally and physically.

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