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Aug 4, 2020 in 

God Abba me through the pain after the suicide of our child

Our child, Leo, was 20 when he hung himself for no apparent reason on the cricket field on 20 February 2007.

Amelia Van Zyl


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He was found by the caretaker of the field the next day. I do not wish this terrible news to my worst enemy. I wanted to stop living myself. For years afterward, I wanted to take my own life. However, I could never gather the guts to do it. I suffered from depression; my marriage started to disintegrate; I mocked my supervisors and challenged them to fire me. I wished someone would hijack me, rob me, and shoot me. I acted out my anger on the roads and viciously swore at other drivers using hand signs. The dreams emanating from my subconscious mind exposed the fact that I was not coping, that I was losing my grip on life. Unknowingly I was killing myself, wishing myself dead.

Initially, I kept a journal as a means to grow through this terrible experience. I knew it would be a powerful instrument in my healing. However, I now hope that the straightforward manner in which I share my story in this book can help others to cope with the death of a loved one. Whether it is due to suicide or otherwise, you may find the tips helpful. I wrote this story firstly as a mourning mother and secondly as a healer.

After the death of Leo, I asked many questions. Many of them were answered through my study of depression and what the illness entails. I concluded that Leo must have suffered from it. After the trauma, I wanted to lie down - literally and figuratively. It took all my energy to carry on one day after the other. I had no energy to LIVE. The focus of this book is to share the story of my slow journey towards healing, reclaiming my life, and ultimately towards fulfilling my calling.

This book can be useful to professionals who seek to understand the experiences of their clients and who wish to support clients with their journey after the suicide of a loved one. It is not to say that others will experience the same emotions. We dare not put people in a box. Everyone has an experience unique to themselves. However, the stories will tally.

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