A Wake For Drew's Young Soul
Editor- Lizette McMillen
We all experience death or suicide at some point in our lives.
A death or suicide that breaks us, but makes us who we are now... We would be void of character or depth without these experiences.
"Today I found my soul
I felt it die inside of me
So I turn to you
Life is like that you know"
I received the call around 1 p.m. on April 1st, 2012. It was my best friend, Sean. He was very upset. He was uttering and blubbering to me. He said that our good friend, Drew, had committed suicide. I still remember his words because they shook me to my core. “Drew’s dead, Robyn. He killed himself. I’m not even joking, dude.”
"Let the truth blow like a hurricane through me"
I questioned Sean multiple times, thinking he was joking. This news was so upsetting and it wasn’t real to me. I knew he had to be serious. He was so lost and upset.
I stayed on the phone with him for a while as we retraced our last time spent with Drew. We went over anything and everything we could as to why we didn’t know that Drew would do such a thing. We did what many people do and we blamed ourselves for not knowing our friend better.
Drew was a goofy, class clown type. Thus, the irony of him taking his life the night before April Fools Day. We would all certainly find out the following day and think it was a joke, right? I’m positive now that he wasn’t thinking any of that in the forefront of his mind when he decided to commit suicide. He just knew he was hurting and no longer wanted to be in this life. However, subconsciously he created a sick fuckin’ joke for all of us to sit with.
"If I've been cold, if I've spoken in anger, to have been bold, forgive me"
This was a tough pill to swallow, so I knew nothing better to do but think of the good things. Drew was a great friend, with the biggest heart. He was a big, huggable dude and, to this day, I miss that about him very much. No party or get together would ever be the same after this.
Drew’s close friends were given a copy of his graduation photo by his brother, to cherish and remember him by. I used to look at that picture and it would hurt so fuckin’ bad. When I see it now, time has passed, and it still hurts. I can’t help but to think of the catchy, dark, yet upbeat tune “Wake For Young Souls.” Technically, when I hear the song I think of the photo.
"I have your face in a photo in high school when you were alive but that's all I have"
He was about 17 or 18 in the picture. It was his final school photo from his senior year. I love this picture of him. He has such a warm inviting presence about him. That’s how he always was, but there’s some pain behind those eyes. A pain none of us knew was there but him. A pain we all feel sometimes, which he felt more often than not. A pain I wish I had recognized. I was so sorry to him for not knowing. I’m still very sorry, but I do not to blame myself for it. Had I known more, I would’ve reached out to him.
The 6 long years that have passed have taught me a plethora of lessons. None of us knew that his death would start a downward spiral for all of us. Before Drew died, our group of friends had barely even scratched the surface of drug abuse and their effects. We all went through some rough times with drugs and alcohol in the years to come. That is, however, a different story to be told.
We all grew up and grew apart in these years. We grew close because of our loss, then we grew apart as the time passed. We knew we had to. We have all gone our separate ways, as adults do, with some of us doing better than others but all getting there in our own time.
"All the things we know are going to fall away from me like a grain of sand slips through a good friends hands"
Our friend Drew taught us all multiple life lessons: How to cope and deal with loss being the main lesson learned, he taught us how to listen and recognize, as well. We are all constantly changing and redirecting based on our life environment. This letter is both an apology and a thank you to my good friend, for his direction in my young life and throughout my years to come. I love you and miss you, my friend, Drew Duggar.