Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Tragic Death of Robin Williams: Warning Signs of Suicide

Gentle Readers, I am sure I am not alone in my shock at the news of the death of Robin Williams. His publicist's succinct statement - "He has been battling severe depression of late" - sparks more questions in lieu of an explanation because something so seemingly random to outsiders and to those who have never struggled with depression defies comprehension. We will never know his personal demons or the "black dog" that haunted him.

I ran a series of blog posts on the topic of depression last year in conjunction with Depression Awareness Month and "came out of the closet," as it were, about my own personal battle. Today I am re-posting in part 10 Signs You Should Know of the 10th Leading Cause of Death.

It's possible that there was nothing anyone could have done to prevent Robin Williams' death, but knowing the warning signs might help someone you know.

From October 20, 2013

Gentle Readers, Throughout the month of October, we have focused on Depression Awareness. In addition to the special 99¢ Book Sale Benefit of "Alicia Embracing the Dark" intended to widen understanding of depression as well as support the non-profit organization To Write Love on Her Arms, earlier this month in my post When It's Almost Impossible to Appear Tolerably Cheerful, I disclosed my own personal, on-going battle with Major Depressive Disorder. For National Depression Screening Day, I had a special post detailing the symptoms of depression and how to find help or take an anonymous evaluation, as well as how depression feels to me personally when I cannot hold the darkness at bay.

With about ten days remaining in Depression Awareness Month, I want to share the warning signs of suicide. Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States, and 90% of those who commit suicide have clinical depression or another mental illness. More than a million Americans attempt suicide every year, and half of people who commit suicide have attempted it before.

Would you recognize the warning signs in time?

 1.   Excessive sadness or moodiness. Long-lasting sadness, mood swings, and unexpected rage. Trouble sleeping or eating.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Five Random Things About Me

Greetings, dear readers!             

http://colettesaucier.blogspot.com/2012/12/thursday-thirteen-recipe-13-ingredients.htmlI know I have been neglecting my blog miserably for the past few months, but I have been devoting as much time as I have away from my soul-sucking day job to WRITING! As in new novels!

So when Jo Lynne Valerie suggested that the featured authors for Authors After Dark (eeek! Only 3 days away!) share 5 random things about themselves, I figured even I could handle that (even though I should be packing for Charlotte!).

To that end, here are five random things your might not know about me:

#1:   I grew up as an only child (I found out I had a half-brother when I was 14) and - since we only had 4 TV channels and video games and VCRs didn't exist, I had to find innovative ways to entertain myself. I learned to read at an early age, and then I would play school with my collection of stuffed animals as my students. They never did very well on the tests. I would also have little wars with pennies, heads vs. tails. That last bit actually sounds rather pathetic.

#2:   I only completed the 9th grade. (I stayed for half of 10th grade because I was in marching band, so I had to finish out the football season.) Then I got my GED. I lied about my age and worked a couple of jobs before taking the ACT, and I started college the summer I turned 17.

#3:   I found two husbands in college! The first class I took was English, where I met my ex-husband. Of course, he happened to be the one teaching the class! I actually ended up marrying him twice before getting a clue and divorcing him for good, and eventually I married the man who had been the TA in two of my history classes. We have now been married for twenty years.

#4:   I once tried to trade one of my daughters for a camel. Just kidding. The photo above was taken by my daughter when we went to Tunisia. We were fortunate to visit when we did because the next year they had a coup, and the country is not so welcoming to Westerners anymore. I always wanted to visit all the continents before I died, and I only have Australia and Antarctica to go! (Here's a recipe for Tunisian Couscous in case you'd like to give it a try.)

#5:   I am a minister of the Universal Life Church and have performed a handful of weddings. I am also a Civil Law Notary Public here in Louisiana, which means I can perform almost all the duties of an attorney short of appearing in court. That means I can draw up your Prenuptial Agreement, perform your wedding ceremony, and then notarize you divorce papers - one stop shopping!

So now you know more about me than most of my friends!

If you want to know a few random things about other featured authors at Authors After Dark, here's a place to start: