I suppose when someone dies by suicide the tendency for people who didn’t know them that well is to remember them by their death rather than their life. “Oh yeah – I remember that kid. He’s the one that killed himself.” This isn’t something I gave much thought to until recently. It’s yet another “secondary loss.” The loss of Drey’s legacy. Frankly I’m pretty flippin done with discovering, processing and grieving all these secondary losses. But they keep coming.
Probably without even realizing it Drey’s friends have been and continue to be a big support to me in this area. The 2013 year book includes Bethaney sharing what Drey meant to her and how he impacted her. Just yesterday Britney shared on FB some words Drey had encouraged her with. I’ve heard stories about Drey and how special he was when I spent time with his friends this summer, too. One friend shared that in part it was because of their friendship and the loss of that friendship that prompted her to begin a relationship with God.
I am grateful beyond words to hear about my son’s impact on others. Not just because a Mom wants – even needs – to hear these things because she misses her baby. But because I know others are carrying on Drey’s legacy – his real legacy – by sharing about the impact he had on them.
So maybe it’s not fair to say his legacy is a secondary loss.
Thank you friends for making that possible.