I was interviewed yesterday for a KSL special on suicide prevention (KSL is a Utah-based television station). It’s producer, Candice Madsen, had read the story of my attempted suicide and contacted me last week via Facebook. She asked if I would be willing to share some of my thoughts on camera.
I hesitated. Typically, I’M the one behind the camera—asking all of the questions, telling people not to be nervous—so this was quite the role reversal! But in terms of forward walking, my wife and I felt strongly like this would be a big step forward.
So we made the necessary arrangements and drove from San Francisco to Arizona, then from Arizona to Utah.
Oh, right! I forgot to mention the part about Arizona!
We went down to Arizona to conduct several on-camera interviews with the ANASAZI Foundation. We spoke with a couple of TrailWalkers, Ezekiel Sanchez, and two of his sons, Nephi and Lehi. These interviews will used for the Digitally Enhanced Version of The Seven Paths, to be published by Berrett-Koehler later this year. Pretty exciting, huh?
As part of our trip, we also had the opportunity to be photographed by the artist Howard Lyon. He’s painting the murals that will go inside of the Gilbert, Arizona LDS Temple. A couple of months ago, he offered to paint my wife and I into one of the murals. How do you turn down and offer like that?! You don’t! That’s how! You can read more about that experience here.
Anyway, the interview for KSL was good. Candice is a really great person. Apart from a mid-interview interruption from my Dad (he was late because he got a haircut and a Diet Coke) everything went smoothly.
In the seven years since I tried to take my life, my parents haven’t talked much about it. Their primary focus was on moving forward. So it was very touching for me, personally, to hear them speak about it. According to my dad (and I didn’t know this until yesterday), one of the doctors said they wouldn’t have been able to save me if I came ten minutes later.
Holding my wife’s hand, that statement came as a complete shock to me. Ten minutes are all that stood between me and years of beautiful, wonderful memories. For any of you that are depressed or contemplating suicide, I promise you that the pain you are experiencing right now will fade. The sun will rise. There is so much life ahead of you! Keep moving forward, fill your life with light, and look for the beauty in all things. I promise you that your hurts will heal. The beauty of a full life far outweighs the pains of the moment.
Anyway, I encourage you to watch KSL’s special on Suicide this Thursday at 10PM MST.
It’s been an interesting week of interviews and cameras, to say the least.