John McCrae had 4 more straight basketball wins. As a team we were pleased since it meant that we will be going into the playoffs.
However, at last Wednesday’s game I had a heavy heart, since we played against A.Y. Jackson High School. Right before the game was the visitation for one of their students (Jamie Hubley) who had taken his own life because of the combination of bullying and depression.
Hearing of his death personally hit me very hard! I had just met Jamie’s dad, Kanata Councillor Allan Hubley a few weeks back at a BBX Taekwon-Do fundraiser where some of the proceeds went to the Ottawa Mental Health Hospital. The irony of this was too much for me. I just felt numb.
There was a spokesperson at the fundraiser who talked about how important it is to speak openly about Depression and other Mental Illnesses especially for teens since the suicide rate for teens and young adults has rapidly increased. Depression and Mental Illnesses are not only for older people and there should be no shame attached to it.
I keep thinking about the pain that Jamie’s poor parents and family are going through. I never knew Jamie, but I keep remembering how kind Councillor Hubley was at the fundraiser and how important the fundraiser was too him. Families who have lost their children like this need so much support to help them carry on.
The game was so weird. No one on either team wanted to be playing. The girls from A.Y. Jackson were having trouble holding back the tears since they just came from the visitation and some girls on our team knew Jamie as well. There was an eary silence and hush in the gym. No one cheered since it would have been disrespectful for our visiting team. I couldn’t wait for it to be over since my heart was not in it at all. It just didn’t feel right.
I get so upset when I think that life is so bad for some people that they feel the only thing they can do is to take there own life. Although it’s very nice to hear everything good about people after they die, I really think that if we all told people the good things about them while they are alive, then it wouldn’t come to this. Being a teenager myself I know how cruel and hard it can be in school if you don’t feel like you fit in. I know I am very lucky that my sports have given me good self esteem and lots of confidence but everyone still has the same desires of wanting to be accepted and loved.
I challenge everyone to say at least one good, kind and positive thing to someone everyday so everyone feels that life is worth living. Last Thursday we had to wear purple to show our respect for the 7 teen deaths that happened in the last year in Ottawa. Hopefully with all the media about bullying something will actually get done and eventually there will be zero tolerance for it. We can all make a difference.
Check out this great website www.youknowwhoiam.com to see things that can and are being done.
Hopefully with celebraties and athletes like Daniel Alfredsson who help this campaign, people will take more attention.
Please everyone, join my challenge – Let’s make a difference so no other parent has to lose their child or no one has to lose their best friend at a young age. This is just not right!!!