The option to stop,
but the decision to keep going.
BE THE VOICE;
STOP THE SILENCE;
THROUGH EDUCATION & CONVERSATION
Through his daughter's eyes
The truth is, I thought this was going to be easy.
I was going to share my story of how I have overcome this colossal obstacle in my life. A fantasy, a cliché that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. An image to the world that I have conquered, that I have persevered, that I have come out on the other side.
The truth is I have not conquered, I am conquering.
I have not persevered, I am preserving, and I am still looking for the other side whatever that may be. The hardest part is allowing myself to be vulnerable and face the truth, but sometimes the scariest things is what can make you heal.
April 19, 2014 my dad died from suicide.
I have rarely been able to say that out loud or accept that fact for myself. To save myself from the humility, embarrassment or judgment that follows the stigma of suicide. It's one thing for my family to know, but a world full of people scares the hell out me. I am sharing my story to make awareness that is okay to not be okay.
My dad was probably one of the happiest people I knew. He would light up any room he walked into. With his crooked hat, half tucked shirt and glowing personality. He touched every soul he encountered and left his mark anywhere he went. The saying goes ‘he’d give you the shirt off his back’ that was my dad.
He always had a glow to his smile until he didn’t.
Now the perspective of an 11-year-old girl at the time could only see that her dad was not happy. He started to not laugh as much, sleep more and fade away going into a downward spiral that I have never seen before. I could not understand, I still don't know what he was going through, maybe someday I'll find out, but for now I just have to accept what happened.
I remember seeing him shake on the couch and my mom trying to get him to colour to calm him, down relax, him help, him but nothing seemed to help. The countless doctor appointments, refusal of care, my dad was let down. My family was let down.
No one should be sent away because they seem fine on the outside. Maybe if that one doctor did not turn him away, he would still be here, but he's not. So now is the time to be brave and share my story in hopes that no family has to go through it mine is still going through.
The stigma created with mental health is that people suffering are not ‘normal’. That people do not have something wrong with them unless they want to jump off a bridge, but that perspective is so far from accurate. It is okay to talk about how you feel. Bringing the inner demons out of the dark to hopefully shine your true light.
I have always struggled with coming to terms how my father died. I still do, but by me being vulnerable enough to speak up and share my story at the chance of helping one person or family, is getting to the other side of this journey.
This is just the beginning; the Steven Krachkowski Memorial Fund is in honour of my dad.
He struggled with mental health. He died from suicide, and that forever lifted chain reaction of grief throughout his family and friends.
I am ready to turn my anger into forgiveness, put all the energy of hatred I felt towards my dad, the medical system and the darkness created by this tragedy into love. I want to realize that suicide is not an embarrassing shameful term that I have created it to be. One step at a time, one person to time, one family at a time . Starting with myself, honoring the legacy of my father through helping others, being a voice, being a light and truly making my dad proud.
Create community mental health awareness through education, conversation and strong partnerships.
A safe place where stories are shared and supports are easily accessible.
A place where mental health stigma is a thing of the past.
WHY 2BK VEGETABLE FARM
& THE STEVEN KRACHKOWSKI
TWO YEARS AFTER STEVEN TRAGICALLY TOOK HIS LIFE,
HIS WIFE KAREN NEEDED MEANS TO PROVIDE FOR HER YOUNG FAMILY.
THIS IS WHERE 2BK VEGETABLE FARMS WAS FOUND.
KAREN, ALONG WITH HER PARTNER, BRIAN BRENNEIS,
SEWED THE FIRST SEEDS INTO THE FERTILE NAMAO SOIL AND
OUT OF TRAGEDY,A BOUNTY WAS GROWN.
THIS MENTAL HEALTH INITIATIVE HAS TAKE 7 YEARS TO COME TO FRUITION.
THROUGH THE TEARS, THE LAUGHTER AND THE HEARTACHE WE HOPE THAT WE CAN
BRING SUPPORT AND EDUCATION TO THE COMMUNITY AROUND US.