“I didn’t hear from you. That’s not like you,” said one of my closest friends who was so used to me texting back right away that after two days passed and no word, she made a call to another bestie to see if she knew I was still breathing. I was nothing but flattered and thankful for her maturity. She could have easily felt some kind of way because I didn’t reply back, but instead she relied on the fact that she knew me well enough to know that if I break routine, something must be wrong. With friends like that, the whole world would be alright.
I replayed that day in my mind as I heard the news of the CEO and founder of Golden Krust, Lowell Hawthorne, reportedly committed suicide. News outlets reported that he was found in his Bronx warehouse with gunshot wounds. Employees were quoted saying he was a great guy. Commenters on discussion boards expressed disbelief that someone who seemingly had it all would end his life. It leads people to wonder if they missed any signs, or did he say anything that would have given a clue something was wrong. Was it a financial issue? A bad diagnosis? Masked depression?
I really felt some kind of way upon hearing such tragic news because one of my constant prayers is for the Lord to make me sensitive to people who are suffering, especially those who are to the point of wanting to commit suicide. I especially pay attention to people who are strong, who appear to never need anyone, who is the one praying for everyone and spreading sunshine, yet in the wee hours of the night may be sitting up wondering if living another day is really worth it. I know people who have been through horrendous things and no one ever asked how it impacted them. I’ve talked with people who tried to share with others they were struggling with depression only to be told to get over it. People tend to think depression is just a bad mood or something happened that made someone sad. The real deal is sometimes depression is caused by hormonal imbalances that can only be controlled with medication. Some people have been severely traumatized and need serious deliverance through prayer and counseling in order to believe there is still good in the world. A person can’t just get over that; it requires real help.
All I can say is we never know what a person is going through, and we should never take it for granted that someone is so strong, so okay, so on top of things that there will never come a day when that person feels the crushing weight of holding it down. I would like to encourage everyone to take time out of their busy schedule on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, texting, etc., and ask at least two people how they are doing, if they need anything such as prayer, a listening ear, and yes, even a bill paid. You never know who is waiting on someone to show they care. In some cases it could mean life or death. Let’s help people live.