Why Didn't I Call Her? - Penny Lane Blog at Allrecipes.com - 255302

Penny Lane

Why Didn't I Call Her? 
Oct. 30, 2011 12:03 pm 
Updated: Nov. 6, 2011 9:00 pm
Why didn't I call her?
She would often call out of the blue - just to talk. 
Not this time...
Why didn't she call me?
I was thinking of her - so why didn't I call? 
I saw her pictures while packing - they made me smile.
I should have picked up the phone..... 
Remembering her huge smile,
her hugs,
her endless energy
her laughter... 
She was a survivor.  So why didn't she?
When life kicked her in gut - she always fought back.   
She was a glass half full person.
When did that change?
When her mother abandoned the family....
She adopted me. 
She taught me about Adobo...
I taught her about artichokes.
As a kid she would putt putt her way to my house on her scooter
Just in time for dinner.
"What's for dinner, Mom?"
Even then she loved 2 wheeled vehicles with motors....
Good memories.
Thanksgiving morning I could count on her
She always came by to scope out the bird
Claiming a Turkey leg as her own.
When life kicked me in the gut
She taught me about friendship and loyalty. 
Then she grew up
She had always been older than her years
That happens when life kicks a kid in the gut.
When she joined the Army
I cheered her on. 
Her long beautiful hair flowing out from beneath her helmet as she cruised away on her motorcycle on her way to Ft. Benning.
Good memories. 
Years would pass
Then out of the blue the phone would ring.
She would be calling to just to check in - just to talk
To tell me about the death of her father....
Then the Facebook posts stopped.
Why didn't I call her? 
She was seeing a psychiatrist
For depression, they say....
I didn't know
Why didn't I call her? 
31 years old
Life was too painful
I am sure that she just wanted 'peace'
Alcohol and Prescription Drugs don't mix.
She didn't wake up
Now she is gone
We will miss you sweetie.
You touched a lot of lives here on Earth.
I hope there is a Harley in Heaven.
I have intentionally not used our friends name.  
I debated about posting this or not.  Then I thought about it - maybe it will help someone else pick up the phone.  Call and check in.  Ask for help.  I would have gone to pick her up and bring her "home" if only I had known.  I would have made her artichokes and hugged her, cried with her and held her hand.

Now it is too late.  
Oct. 30, 2011 12:30 pm
Thank you for sharing, Baking Nana. We all are guilty of "not calling". I know the anguish you must be feeling about your sweet friend. Healing words elude me but I have someone I need to call and I will pick up the phone today. My prayer for you is that you will find peace about your friend's passing and that you will remember that you were there for her when she was younger. Alcohol and drugs do strange things to people. Maybe she was too embarrassed to reach out to you when she needed you the most. Dwell on the happy times you shared.
Oct. 30, 2011 1:15 pm
We too have a friend in need and I have just realized that from your post... he has been reaching out by jus out of the blue stopping by and randomly calling when he has never before... I think too that now is the time and I hope Im not too late to just pop in to check on him and or make the time to make that phone call once a week or maybe even more... Thank you so very much for helping to open my eyes and helping me through your loss too see what is right in front of us...
Oct. 30, 2011 1:20 pm
You nailed it! I have spent the last year beating myself up with regret. I appreciate this post so much. Thank you. As always, Live, Love, Laugh Scott
Oct. 30, 2011 1:47 pm
your friend was stationed at ft. benning? it's right below where i live, we share borders. we see many GREAT folks come thru here. i wish i had known...claire and i would have her over for dinner and we would have CALLED you! sorry for your loss!!! this is a military community, the mother-n-law capital of the world. i always grab some soldiers that can't make it home for christmas and stuff those folks with a good southern dinner...they DESERVE it! if you have a military base near you, you can call the liason officer and ask if anyone can attend. you may have to pick them up...who cares! as i said they deserve it!
Oct. 30, 2011 2:11 pm
I can totally understand where you're coming from...we lost Bob's brother in July to suicide from alcoholism...it's not an easy thing and you'll never understand why. Sorry you're going through this :(
Oct. 30, 2011 2:26 pm
Oh, Penny... I don't even know what to say. How profoundly sad! I am praying that you will be covered today in peace. Knowing that you were a "friend" to her when SHE needed you to be. I'm just so sorry, truely sorry!
Oct. 30, 2011 2:35 pm
Oh, Penny. Regrets. I so understand that. A good reminder to us all. Thanks for your blog.
Oct. 30, 2011 2:50 pm
I'm so sorry. Take joy in your good memories and know that she is at peace.
Oct. 30, 2011 3:09 pm
silvergal - You are so right Drugs and alcohol are a bad mix and do bad things to people. Incuding prescription drugs. We may never know what really happened. All we are left with is the "what if's....."
Oct. 30, 2011 3:16 pm
Victoria - I have throughout my life had several times where someone is on my mind - I would get a nudge - For no reason. "So and So needs your prayers tonight." I have always listened to those 'nudges' - send an email, pick up the phone etc.. On more than one occasion the need and timing has been spot on. This time - I was so wrapped up in my own move that I put it off. I didn't call - I didn't email. I should have. Your friend may be needing you more that you ever knew. Pick up the phone. Invite him for Thanksgiving. Let him know you care.
Oct. 30, 2011 3:23 pm
LLL - Scott. I so understand your pain. You have found a wonderful way to give back - to connect to people. Please keep blogging. There are so many "Whys?" I keep repeating the Serenity Prayer... there are things which I have no control over. Still - I sure wish I had made that call.
Oct. 30, 2011 3:31 pm
Gderr - yes she was at Ft. Benning - when she got out of the Army she had fallen in love with GA and decided to stay there. I like your idea of "adopt a solider" for Thanksgiving. They do deserve it I am sure that she would have loved your Thanksgiving dinner - claimed a turkey leg and helped with the dishes too. Then ridden off on her bike with a smile on her face.
Oct. 30, 2011 3:39 pm
Witchywoman, Candice, Marianne and Maridele - Thank you for your kind words. I picked up the phone today to call a couple of people - just to touch base and tell them that I love them. What a kick in the pants this has been. Our friend's younger sister in now dealing with the details and the funeral arrangements. I pray for her strength. It is so much harder for those left behind
Oct. 30, 2011 4:52 pm
so sorry, It IS so hard for those who are left behind. You must have been so important to her. Sometimes we just can't fill the void, no matter how hard we try or how much we want to. I am so sorry for your loss.
Oct. 30, 2011 5:03 pm
Wow! I think we can all relate to your blog. On October 8th a 19 year old neighbours son, intentionally drove into the path of an on coming transport truck. It was our Thanksgiving here, he had only been off to college a month, seemed to enjoying it. He always seemed up beat and happy, apparently things were not so. I am sure so many of his friends are asking the same thing; why didn't they see it coming? Sorry for your loss and anyone else that has experienced depression and suicide.
Oct. 30, 2011 5:36 pm
Nana...I'm so sorry. And I agree with "we are all guilty of not calling." no words can describe the guilt or the what if's you are feeling right now. My prayers and soulice for peace are with you my dear friend. Hugs.
Oct. 30, 2011 5:38 pm
I wanted to add. You have the memories. And I hope there is that help with things in her family's time of need and mend your heart.
Oct. 30, 2011 5:46 pm
You made me cry, I battle the same demons.
Oct. 30, 2011 7:23 pm
Petey - I know for sure she was important to me - I hope she knew that. I would have been sure of that fact if only I had called her. I will never ignore that nudge - that tap on the shoulder to call and touch base. She touched my life in a special way.
Oct. 30, 2011 7:39 pm
Janet: How sad for that young man's parents. I wonder how many happy exteriors merely mask a dark interior. The burden for the family left behind is enormous. Depression is so difficult to understand.
Oct. 30, 2011 7:43 pm
Mis7up - I have good memories - still I wish we could sit together and laugh at those memories. This Thanksgiving we will toast her with the Turkey legs!
Oct. 30, 2011 7:52 pm
KingSparta - sorry for the tears - they join mine. What a loss - what a loss. Pick up the phone - make that call. Give of yourself and accept others care and attention. We are all in this journey together.
Oct. 30, 2011 8:20 pm
king sparta, if i may echo baking nana...pick up the phone, folks love, want and will help.
Oct. 30, 2011 8:41 pm
Nana..If not for anything, I thank you for sharing your heartbreaking story. Just to remind all of us how precious life is and how all of us leave some sort of stamp in someone else's life. May God Bless You and help you find peace in the fact that you left an impression on that girl's life. And to all that read this, just know that there is someone out there that will listen, just as we all are here now. Much love to you Nana.
Oct. 31, 2011 6:43 am
I'm so sorry for your loss. The "if only's" can stay with you for a long time, my DH still wonders 30 years later why his dad ended his life. Such a sad thing and I'm so sorry for your heartbreak. You and her family are in my thoughts.
Oct. 31, 2011 9:42 am
Awww nana, so sorry for ur loss.. I know how hard it is.. I just lost my grandad a week ago.. He died of old age though.. he was 85.. Sometimes things are destined to happen & thats beyond our control, however dearly we may wish otherwise... Take it easy on urself.. ((Hugs))
Oct. 31, 2011 9:50 am
I am so sorry for your loss.
Oct. 31, 2011 12:08 pm
I can only echo the sentiments already expressed by everyone else...I am so very sorry for the loss of your friend. You are right. Sometimes we get so caught up in our own lives that we forget to keep up with the lives of our loved ones. Though I didn't know your friend, I've spent enough time with you to be confident that she knew she was important to you. Your caring and compassionate nature does not leave any doubt in one's mind. Treasure the good memories of scooters and turkey legs and, although it's easier said than done, try not to let the "What Ifs" rule your thoughts of her.
Oct. 31, 2011 12:37 pm
I am deeply sorry for the loss of your friend and the anguish she and all the people who loved her will suffer. I recently read that suicide is epidemic in this country. It seems the financial meltdown has caused many to tip over the edge. You are absolutely correct. We must tend to one another and reach out to our friends who are struggling. Take care sweetheart.
Oct. 31, 2011 1:19 pm
I am so sorry for your loss and the senseless ending of one's life. You writing this can not only help other's realize that maybe a call should be made but can also help you heal as well by knowing you have possibly helped someone thru your sadness. Cherish your memories of your dear friend. I'll be thinking of you.
Oct. 31, 2011 2:39 pm
So sad. Thanks for the reminder that life is too, short and even though everyone seems to be in 5th gear it only takes 1 min. to pick up the phone and call a friend. Sending you prayers from TN. :(
Oct. 31, 2011 6:59 pm
So sorry for the loss of your friend. I'm sure she appreciated your kindness in her life.
Oct. 31, 2011 11:30 pm
Why didn't I know? My best friend of 30 years took her own life in Dec. of 1999, two weeks before Christmas. I still struggle to understand why I didn't realize she needed help. We met the summer before second grade and planned on growing old together. As she had children (she left behind two teenage boys, a husband and a large, loving family) and I do not, she was going to let me share her future grandchildren with her. We even talked about sitting in our rocking chairs on a porch. She was in the hospital for almost 24 hours before she passed. The hospital was overflowing with the friends and family who showed up; hospital workers had never seen anything like it. Her funeral had hundreds of people in attendance, spilling far, far outside the church. She was loving, caring and beautiful. It pains me to think of the suffering of her mom and dad, brother and sister (my second family growing up) and her two sons. (Her sister blamed me, which I am sure, in retrospect, was just her grief talking, as I had not even seen her in two weeks and, of course, had no inkling she would do this, but I have never gone back.) I think of her all the time and my life will never be the same without her. I tend not to make close friends like that anymore. She was also on anti-depressants, which they are saying now can contribute to suicide, but that doesn't help to ease the pain. In her own way, it seemed she was trying to make a point (she left letters to her husband and family), but I cannot believe she really meant to do this to them. Even without intending to be, suicide is a very selfish act. I recently googled her boys and saw that one has taken her maiden name as his own in her memory. The boys also have given her three grandchildren. We are far too young for rocking chairs, but I wish we could still talk about what the future will hold for both of us. I am sorry for your loss, Baking Nana, and mine, and for everyone who has ever lost anyone to this terrible, senseless act.
Nov. 1, 2011 5:22 am
awe B'Nana, I have goosebumps. Writing thoughts like this does help, thank you I have someone I should call right now....hang in there and know that phone calls do work both ways. If alcohol and drugs consumed her, then perhaps she did not want you to know the state she was in, maybe better to have the good memories of your dear adopted friend. There are Harleys in Heaven, there are also gardens without weeds and boats and ski doos that never run out of gas. Take care my friend!
Nov. 1, 2011 6:11 am
BN, I too am so sorry for your loss. I know how easy it is to become overcome with guilt, but I am sure she knew you loved her and felt the comfort and warmth of your friendship deeply. It seems as if the combination of prescription drugs and alcohol can be blamed for a lot of deaths lately...and in lots of those cases, suicide was not the intention at all. So very heart breaking. I too thank you for the reminder to take the time to pick up the phone. It is such a small thing that can mean so much. God bless.
Nov. 1, 2011 7:30 am
I'm sorry for your loss, BN. What a touching blog, and thanks for the reminder to just call those we love.
Nov. 1, 2011 8:15 am
Thank you for sharing. I live in a community where a model student, Eagle scout, sports participant, etc. recently took his own life quite out of the blue, so I would urge everyone to really tune in to the young folks in their lives, also ... Thank you.
Nov. 1, 2011 8:45 am
She was a beautiful human being. She was married to a man who could be quite difficult and raised 6 children. She was one of those old-fashioned "stay at home" moms and every kid in the neighborhood loved to come to her house because she was such a loving, giving, caring person . . she was everyone's mom. She was not really a "people person" - she loved her animals and her kids - all kids. She was quiet and serene in every situation, I never heard her raise her voice . . not once. Not to say there weren't things that didn't perturb her, but she dealt with these things in her graceful, kind way. Everyone loved her. So her death was a "death blow" to all. Why? Why? Why? There will never be an answer to that question - at least not on this side of heaven. Everyone wanted to "blame" somebody or something - - but that's only because if you can blame someone (including yourself) then you can try to make sense out of something that doesn't make sense. You can put a period where there's a question mark. You can put closure to an open-ended situation. But there aren't any answers, there is no period and there is no closure - - except in this, she had many admirable character qualities that are worthy of immolating. If I can make even one of these qualities shine in my life, then I honor her life. Why did she chose to leave? I don't know - I can only imagine that some deep pain was too much. I am not angry with her, nor will I ever be. Do I think it was selfish? No . . she never exhibited selfishness in her entire life. I only wish I could have taken away whatever "thing" it was that was so painful that she didn't know what else to do to make it go away. I know this . . . when answers aren't enough . . there's Jesus. And I know that one day he'll wipe away all the tears and answer any questions. . . . But until then, I chose to remember . . . she was a beautiful human being . . . and she was my mother.
Nov. 1, 2011 9:14 am
So touched. I'm actually at a loss for words. A final year student at the college I graduated from, took his life recently. I didn't know him personally 'coz I graduated 2 years ago, but nevertheless, from all his friends and family that I interacted with at the funeral, nobody saw it coming. They say he took his life 'coz he wasn't getting the grades he wanted. This and many such incidents that I've come across in my life so far are what have caused me to spread the awareness amongst all I know about the importance of connecting with one another and reaching out. Your post is beautiful beyond words and I applaud the strength that it took you to put it together, and to share it with all of us. My prayers are with all of you.
Nov. 1, 2011 9:39 am
Oh luv2cook! That too was so incredibly beautifully written. I am in tears and am speechless...
Nov. 1, 2011 10:38 am
Oh, my!! This is so sad! My best friend for much of the 70's was Wesley T and in the early 80's he hung himself. I still, after all the years, miss him a lot!! I looked up to Wes, and thought he was so strong and indipendint. If I were there I would give you a big hug!! I am so sorry!!
Nov. 1, 2011 11:15 am
luv2cook....I am so sorry for your loss. What a beutiful tribute to a wonderful mother. XO from Las Vegas.
Nov. 1, 2011 12:43 pm
B'Nana, thank you for sharing your thoughts with all of us here. So very sorry for the loss of your special friend. Your blog is a wake up call for all of us to make those calls, reconnect with those we have lost touch with, and to let them know how much we love and care for them. I have several folks I will be calling today and tomorrow.
Nov. 1, 2011 12:49 pm
luv2cook - I am so toughed and in awe that you could share that with us. Thank you for a touching tribute.
Nov. 1, 2011 2:07 pm
You are all to be commended for your insightful learning from a sad situation. Life is precious, never was meant to be destroyed, but enjoyed,explored and fulfilled through the education of mind,spirit,heart and soul of the one who created and set us in this beutiful earth. I myself am aware of the loss of the motivating forces that help us keep our thoughts and feelings able to resist the negative paralizing thoughts and feelings that can come from overriding situations and such things that we have no control over, or are like a suname too much all at once. You all had good ideas, and I think one of the best is continue looking for ways to comfort others in need, in a neighborly way. Asimple yet meaningful way is a toothy, sparkly eyeful smile, it works every time when it comes from our heart, and I always feel better, even when I feel so bad, which is a lot. Then Good non-rauceos music with positive thoughts helps me deal with the not-so-positive things we deal with in life. Friendships are so special, so Nana, you are being agood friend, and being better. So Let your energy be put to better use--having vowed to move on, I know your friend would approve. There will be plenty of friends and folks needing support in the coming days.
Nov. 1, 2011 3:18 pm
I'm sorry for your loss, this type of death is so much harder to accept. You do not bear any guilt. If this was the path she chose, she was in terrible pain. Having known you as she did made part of her life more bearable and she could have called you if she wanted your help. I am sorry you are left with so many unanswered questions, luv2cook. Devastating for all who are left behind.
Nov. 1, 2011 7:23 pm
I know from experience, Nana, that there are times our minds don't comprehend, eyes don't see, ears don't hear... I've lost too many a good friend over 15yrs, and still I'm amazed that I had NO CLUE that somehting was up! My ex-wife (best ever friend) chose to keep from me that she was dying of bone cancer - I was too "ignorant" to understand... After 13yrs, I still want to pick up the phone and call to say hi... It will get easier with time, but we never recover from the loss of one who has touched us so intimately. Be well, Nana...
Nov. 1, 2011 8:20 pm
I lost count of all of those you impacted w/ your blog. They will take what you said and impact someone in their life. That said, the words you wrote will now make a difference in the world. I lost my dearest Aunt and Uncle to a murder/suicide in Feb of this year. I still can't come to terms with it. I want to wrap it up and put it on a shelf, but the what ifs and if onlys just won't let that happen. We will never ever know what lead them to this as not one person in their lives had any clue at all..... and I was the last one to talk to my Aunt the eve of that day it happened. No clues whatsoever that my dear Uncle was in such a state to do this. So even sometimes when you DO pick up the phone and call,,,, things still happen. There simply isn't an answer to the biggest question I will ever have in my life. And working on forgiving is the hardest thing I have ever had to do.
Nov. 1, 2011 10:30 pm
luv2cook~That is beyond moving. I'm quite shaken and your words have borught tears to my eyes. There's a hymn that has always strengthened me, that I'd love to share with y'all, it is: 'It is Well with My Soul' -Horatio Spafford . The story behind this, and the inspiration that caused Horatio Spafford to write and compose this, is a very moving one. God bless all of you.
Nov. 2, 2011 4:58 am
That is such a pretty poem, I have tears in my eyes!! I'm sorry for your lost. I too lost a friend a while ago those who are truly in pain never really show it and its hard to prevent an incident like this. Stay strong and don't be so hard on your self. Sacha
Nov. 2, 2011 6:02 am
Don't be hard on yourself. As many here have said we have all gone throught the "why didn't I make that call?" I too should've made a call and didn't and I am going to live with the guilt and pain everyday for the rest of my life. I cry with you. Alcohol touched my family over and over. So I can feel your pain. I am not going to say I know how you feel because I don't. I only know how I felt. Take comfort from knowing you were a good friend to her and shared many good times with laughter. She is in a better place now and not suffering. God bless her and you.
Nov. 2, 2011 9:17 am
Your poem made me weep for your loss and for the memories of a dear friend I lost the same way -- to depression, to a deadly mix of alcohol and drugs. We had fallen out of touch and a friend called to tell me that she was gone. The official cause of death was an "accidental overdose." Suze died nearly 30 years ago and I still miss her warmth, her laughter, her intelligence and keen insight. Whenever I picture her in my mind's eye, she is smiling. Thank you for posting this.
Nov. 2, 2011 10:47 am
Thank you for the reminder; many of us can use it.
Nov. 2, 2011 1:18 pm
What a beautiful tribute to your 'adopted' daughter. The love and affection, and sadness in your heart for her comes shining through. I understand your heartbreak, there is suicide as well as the despair that leads to an attempt on both my, and my husband's family. Why didn't we see it? How did we miss it? Those questions will haunt us forever. May you find comfort Penny, so very sorry.
Nov. 2, 2011 3:17 pm
P.S. Hindsight is really a part of insight if it is put to good use. We can learn some things about the brain and the function of emoition and nutrition,and the signals that stresses of various sorts can make on us in varying degrees. Don't wait-do it while feeling sad. It won't be everything you need to know, but it will be worth while, in more ways than one. Brain,Emotions, Nutritions,Stress I also add spiritual,using Matt 6:9-14 and Acts 24:15. I'm much sure each of you have some heartfelt reactions that you use in emergencies,you all are caring individuals, i learned these much the same way, I should say I continue to hang on because of care others,care myself, ongoing spiritual and knowledge of applicable education.
Nov. 3, 2011 3:21 am
Penny your story and the many others I’ve just sat here and read are just heart wrenching. Suicide of a loved one can be so much harder than any type of death, leaving such overwhelming emotions of shock, guilt of course, anger and then our own despair. Your poem is such a wonderful tribute to your friend and I can see how much she meant to you. A tremendous blow like this takes so much time to heal and sharing your story gives strength and purpose to not only you but others that are experiencing the same kind of grief. I’m sure your love and kindness you gave throughout the years to your friend kept her going as long as she could here on earth. And that goes to everyone else that lost someone to suicide, you did make a difference, but suicide is not always something you can prevent, even if you did pick up that phone and make the call. Again I’m so sorry for you loss and sending you a really big tight ((HUG)).
Nov. 3, 2011 3:24 am
Baking Nana, I'm glad you posted this. Very poigant and heart felt. I'm sorry for your loss. It's a good message to pick up the phone, you never know what someone is going through even when they are close to you.
Nov. 3, 2011 5:22 am
I am so sorry for your loss. It's very obvious how much she meant to you. My neighbor's lost their son two months ago and I have regrets about what I could have done and maybe it wouldn't have happened but the truth is, we get caught up in our lives and we always think there is time to do what we need to later. Your message is a powerful one and thank you for sharing it. I hope each day brings you a little more peace and comfort with the good memories you have of her.
Nov. 3, 2011 7:20 am
BN, thank you so much for sharing this with us. Your words are so true. Too often I have ignored that "nudge" to do something, call someone, visit someone, etc. Later, I saw that it was indeed the voice of the Holy Spirit telling me to do this, because it was needed. Whether our actions and responses would have made a difference in the lives of someone troubled, is unknown. In some instances, I now know I just needed to talk to the person I was being "nudged" about for one last time, as their time was getting close. Other times, someone has come to mind, and when I called them, they were getting ready to call. You have opened our eyes, reminded us to not put off doing what we feel we should do, and to listen to our spirit's voice. Several years past, friends' son, same age as our daughter, talented, accepted, successful, committed suicide by car exhaust. He lived 1/2 mile down the road from his parents. They had no idea. Her words: "If I had know something was wrong, I would have been right there!" You were a good friend to her. That was a real gift of yourself.
Nov. 3, 2011 7:58 am
I lost my husband to suicide a year and a half ago. I lived with him and loved him every single day since we were married. I never saw the signs. Oh, I can look back now and see things that I never noticed back then and it makes me feel horrible. I am so sorry you are going through this. It sure isn't easy... Believe me, I know.
Nov. 3, 2011 1:52 pm
seashells88 - I can't imagine your grief. I know that a phone call from me probably would not have 'saved' her - as selfish as it sounds though it would have made me feel better. I ignored that "nudge" - I didn't say "I love you...." I can say that I am honored to have been a small part of her life.
Nov. 3, 2011 1:55 pm
Thank you all for your kind words and insight. I may never know if her death was intentional or not. It doesn't matter - either way it is tragic.
Nov. 3, 2011 4:25 pm
Oh Penny, I'm so sorry for your loss. I've been lurking on A/R very briefly since returning to work last month (after breaking a leg last December)and this evening jumped by your blog just to check in on a "new ol'" pal. What makes us each tick in times of unspeakable sadness and why some go on and others not is another of life's many mysteries. I'm just so sorry it hurts. But you wouldn't be you if it didn't.
Nov. 3, 2011 6:43 pm
hello, I just wanted to mention that I know about both sides of the suicide sad story,. as I suffer with bipolar disorder. Before I found out, I was taken to the hospital by the police for attemted suicide. Iwas placed in the mental ward for 3 days, in lock down. In all, before we found out what was causing my behavour I had tried 5 times.After learning what I was dealing with,and getting help developin patterns in living thhelped me recognizewhat I needed to do ,avoid, and especially have the guidance that wouldallow me to successfully navigate through the ups and downs that come with this illness and life's roadeway. I'm goining on 70 in 1- 1/2 yrs, and while these last 15 yrs have been tough,physically, we are content. How come? We worked at putting on a new personality, tailor made but easily accessable, if desired
Nov. 3, 2011 9:33 pm
Penny, like everyone above me so eloquently stated, you are not to blame. You are probably the one bright and shiny star that was in her life, and the one person she couldn't bear to disappoint. She wasn't going to reach out to you for fear of what your reaction might have been. What she didn't count on is how through you, she may have helped you to reach that person that is silently crying out for help. Thanks for posting this and God Bless you Penny. Luv2cook, you are amazing and a beautiful soul.
Nov. 4, 2011 5:55 am
Wow, that is so sad and so beautifully written. Thanks for sharing.
Nov. 4, 2011 5:58 pm
This is so sad but true. My prayers and thoughts out to you.
Nov. 4, 2011 7:40 pm
As sad as this is .... it happens everyday. all over the country....all over the world. For those of you that personally suffer with these thoughts of "ultimate" peace - please pick up the phone. TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY!!!
Nov. 4, 2011 8:59 pm
BAking Nana, I lost my beautiful 37 year old daughter in a similar fashion a few years ago and it was devastating. I had spoken to her a few days earlier and did not suspect a think. I will never know if it was deliberate or accidental. Either way it is very painful for those left behind. It just is not in the normal scheme of things for a child to go before a parent......Ginny
Nov. 5, 2011 4:13 am
Ginny - I am so sorry for your loss. You are right - either way, her untimely death is tragic and devastating. Hugs and blessings to you Ginny.
Nov. 5, 2011 8:01 am
I have been watching this blog with interest. First of all, I am sorry for the loss of your friend. Your tribute to her is filled with love. Sharing your story and also reading what others have written is mind provoking. I have a friend I need to call and it is happening today. Thanks Nana.
Nov. 5, 2011 8:59 am
Ba'Nana, I am overwhelmed by the response to your blog. And, the vulnerability you've allowed us to see and be a part of. I hestitated to say when you first posted, but as I've read through all the other posts, I am just crying. For you, the others who've experienced similar losses and for my own dear sister (the one who lives near you who we came to see and help celebrate her 50th Anniversary) She lost her beloved first born and ONLY daughter to a drug overdose 15 years ago. She was just 33 years old. She lived and worked at Big Bear Lodge and was an addict. She left behind a wonderful husband and 3 children whose lives were changed forever. When we came to CA in July to share the joy of my sister and her husband's special day, it was overshadowed by the "missing" child. It is profoundly sad when this happens to families. The day before the BIG Party, we talked about Micky and how we all wished she could be there. It's still very sad and I see the hole left behind in my sister's heart every time I look in her eyes. It breaks my heart. Thank you for the courage it took to share with us out of you pain and loss. And, for providing a place for the rest of us to share our stories as well. I am still praying for peace to setlle in your heart friend.
Nov. 5, 2011 9:00 am
I do believe that is why I am so very close to my own children. For whatever reason, they could be gone tomorrow. Life is precious and very fragile.
Nov. 5, 2011 9:43 am
Lela - Thank you for stopping in and also for calling your friend today.
Nov. 5, 2011 9:53 am
Candice - You are so right. Life can change in an instant. My brother and sister in law lost their son - he was 24. I know that hole in their heart - that look in their eyes. I try to never miss an opportunity to say "I love you."
Nov. 5, 2011 9:59 am
I lost my father to an accidental death due to alcohol and depression while I was planning my wedding. I was fortunate enough to be able to speak with him on the phone shortly before he passed (about a week). He apologized for his distance from the family and his absence from my engagement party. I will never forget the hurt in his voice. I had never heard or seen him cry before. I truly believe it was his way of making peace before he left my sister and I. I think somehow he knew he didn't have much longer. Planning a funeral and wedding at the same time was the hardest thing I have done in my life. My sister walked me down the aisle and my uncle gave a tribute speech to him during the reception. It is a natural response to wonder what if. I can't tell you how many times I have wondered if I hadn't been so preoccupied with wedding planning would things have turned out differently. Maybe I would have been able to spend more time with him? There are so many different emotions that come along with an untimely death. Anger, guilt, denial, embarassment, etc...The most important thing I have learned in accepting such a loss is forgiveness. I realized much of the sadness I thought I was feeling was anger. Now I do my best to celebrate him by remembering his happier years, many talents, and great accomplishments. The point I am trying to make is that if you can reach out to a loved one, please do. Even though I didn't call him or prevent the tragedy that last phone call helped me get some sort of closure. The only way I have been able to move on is to comfort myself in knowing he is no longer battling demons. I think everyone can relate to your blog in one way or another. Thank you, BN and everyone who shared their heartfelt stories. I know how hard it is to dig down deep and sort through these kinds of emotions. This is the first time for me to really share mine. I hadn't realized how far I've come in my grieving process until now. Thank you for that.
Nov. 6, 2011 8:51 am
Mi$$drea - Thank you for posting. I am truly sorry for your loss. Those 'demons' haunt many people - some, like my friend hide them very well. It is difficult for those left behind to dig down deep and sort through the range of emotions. I wish I had picked up the phone & said "I love you" one more time.
Nov. 6, 2011 2:42 pm
Baking Nana, so sorry to hear this. Next time I swing my leg over my own motorcycle, I will take a moment to pause for your friend. May her spirit 'ride on' happily in your heart and memories.
Nov. 6, 2011 3:12 pm
About a year ago I received a phone call from a lady soliciting for funds for Partners for parents help for teens addicted to drugs and acohol. I explained why I was unable to contribute monetarily, but would like to share other ways. they gave me their address in NY, and their E-mail. They have several ways to share and receive helpful encouraging comments. I was astounded at the large numbers of teen suicides. I check in periodically to give support.
Nov. 6, 2011 5:57 pm
Lissa - I thought of you and your love of bikes. You would really understand this love of hers. When I first heard of her death I thought - a motorcycle accident had taken her. somehow that was something I could understand - then the news came....she didn't die happy with the wind in her hair. Oh man - just thinking of her riding away - her beautiful hair in a long thick braid - on her way to her next adventure, makes me cry. Thanks for giving her a moment of tribute.
Nov. 6, 2011 8:03 pm
Am and Ad's Gram - I congratulate you...for seeking help and for being there to give back. Teens are especially at risk - Tomorrow is another day doesn't seem possible to them. Bless you!
Nov. 6, 2011 9:00 pm
Oh, Penny~so sorry for your loss,but what a beautiful tribute to her you have written,& look how many people you have motivated to "pick up that phone" & make that call. Just that will brighten many days & maybe someone will be saved from the same fate. I've known sad & depressed people & belive me letting them know someone truly cares about them & would miss them can be a life saver. It sounds like you have helped a lot of people by sharing your loss.
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Baking Nana

Living In
Corona, California, USA

Member Since
Aug. 2009

Cooking Level

Cooking Interests
Baking, Grilling & BBQ, Frying, Stir Frying, Slow Cooking, Asian, Mexican, Italian, Healthy, Quick & Easy

Gardening, Hiking/Camping, Camping, Boating, Walking, Fishing, Photography, Music, Charity Work

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About Me
Every morning my granddaughter calls and says, "Good morning Nana. Whatcha doing? Are you baking Nana?" Hence my name, Baking Nana. I love to bake bread and never get tired of it. Yeast is additive! Visit me at BakingNana.com If you would like to contact me directly please use the 'Contact Me' on my site. http://bakingnana.com/contact-me/
My favorite things to cook
I go through phases, Asian for a while then Italian then on to something else. I love experimenting with new flavors and different spices. Some times my husband will ask if we will ever have "ordinary" food again. Once in a while I have to toss him a burger just to keep quite! Actually, he is a good sport and my favorite taste tester.
My favorite family cooking traditions
In our family if it is your birthday you get to choose the menu. We have had some really interesting meals. In March we have 5 birthdays so we do one big party - what a crazy menu that is! Christmas dinner is very traditional. Sausage rolls, Prime Rib, Yorkshire Pudding, gravy, Green beans with bacon, Mashed Potatoes (the really fattening kind) and trifle for dessert. If I were to dare to omit any of those items I would be lynched.
My cooking triumphs
Mastering really great bread is probably my biggest triumph. I am always so pleased when I create a perfect Asian dish.
My cooking tragedies
There have been a few but none so horrible that I can't laugh about them now.
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