Fashion Stars For A Cause.
Their title seems benign enough.
Attractive women dressed in fashionable clothes beaming with smiles from ear to ear peddling raffle tickets and inviting family and friends to a gala.
The answer isn't so begnin, after all.
In fact, it's devastating.
But, it's real.
At 32 years old, a young wife and mother of three chose to end her life by suicide, leaving behind a husband, a 10-year-old son, a 9-year-old daughter and a 6-month-old daughter. That woman was my grandmother, who, according to my mother, was "kind, gentle and had a special measure of softness about her."
It's hard to believe as I look at old photographs that my grandmother, in the arms of a man who clearly loved her and surrounded by children who clearly adored her, could have been anything but happy and content.
But, mental illness - severe depression, in her case - robs you of happiness.
Regardless of what you see on the outside, the sadness, loneliness and despair felt on the inside are, sometimes, so strong, they seem insurmountable. At times, death becomes the only answer to ending the pain.
I never knew my grandmother. But, I know her pain.
To be continued…