Newton, a nearby town, is reeling from losing a third teenager in recent months: Newton School's Support After Suicide.
“Every parent feels this in their heart,” Ruth Reibstein, whose two children recently graduated from Newton North, said in an interview in Newton Centre. “We all know people who are suffering, and you can’t take away all the misery and pain. All you can do is reach out and help where you can.” From the Boston Globe, Feb. 8, 2014.
I can't say it any more loudly or clearly. As a parent, as an adult and community member, I reach out my arms to catch kids falling, and in this nightmarish reality, unlike when they were small and portable, now they are big, full of self-determination and whatever it is that prevents them from reaching back for safety.
With my toddler I played a game that spooked an early childhood specialist. I'd say, "Baby overboard!" and my physically out-there toddler would fall backwards in my arms - always and only when it was safe would I say the magic words, when I had a good firm grip, never off of a hotel balcony. The specialist recovered her composure and said, "She really trusts you."
I would give anything for arms wide and strong enough to catch these kids. Knowing I can't do that, the next best thing is mustering support for agencies that can. Samaritans does.
Tomorrow, on my journey to Copley Square, I'm planning 17 training miles. I really do not care what the weather's going to be, I'm going to do these miles, this training, this marathon, and this fund and awareness raising anyway.
Do you know a troubled kid? Check out these resources, including signs a child may be at risk.