Almost two years to the day has gone by since I wrote a hello piece for this publication. Sadly, I am now penning my goodbye.
Growing up, there was nothing more I wanted to do in life than write. I channeled my creative expression through the manuscripts of screenplays, stage plays, short stories and comic books that I’m sure I’d be embarrassed to re-read nowadays.
I was lost as I wandered my way through three years of college and university trying to balance my love of literature and history with the reality that passion usually won’t produce a pay cheque.
In the end, it always came back to writing. Journalism became my outlet for that and I put my all into it.
My career progressed from school practicum, to newsroom intern directly into a full-time career. I had a desk to call my own and a pregnant wife at home. Life seemed as it should be and I truly did see myself having a long career covering stories in Airdrie and Rocky View County.
Two months into my position, however, my world derailed. Our daughter was stillborn at five months and that loss was followed by two miscarriages over the next two years.
I pushed much of myself down after that. I had to. I was a man and that’s what men do.
In reality, that’s the only thing men know how to do.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, men and mental health can be referred to as “a silent crisis.”
I’ve learned now that suppression is not a solution. After the third loss, something broke inside of me and years of anxiety and depression took over.
There was an aspect of my consciousness that didn’t want to be a part of this reality anymore and that scared me. For the first time in my life, I stopped suppressing and reached out for help.
It’s difficult to admit you need help and even more difficult to say the words to someone else.
Part of that grieving process was introspection by playing my whole life forward. The theme that surfaced time and time again was “home.”
Five years ago, we moved from Alberta for a better life. It’s been an honour telling the stories of this region but it’s time for me to find home once again.