In Extremis: The Life and Death of the War Correspondent Marie Colvin
Marie Colvin, the headmost war reporter of her generation was killed in Syria in 2012 at age 56 by an IED (Improvised Explosive Device). The world of journalism lost a great and iconoclastic correspondent, a fearless female who covered the most destructive global calamities of our times.
She lost an eye when she was reporting in Sri Lanka at the end of the civil war. She interviewed Gaddafi twice, and risked her life covering conflict in Chechnya, East Timor, Kosovo, Sierra Leone, and Zimbabwe.
Her personal life was highly interesting as it was her professional one: extremely motivated, bold and unpredictable. She married several times, drank heavily, suffered from PTSD and never allowed anyone to box her into what society expects from women’s roles.
Losing a loved one can be one of the most painful and stressful events in your life, and it might cause severe emotional crisis that could develop into different physical symptoms or diseases:
High blood pressure
Worsening of arthritis symptoms.
Gastritis or worsening of symptoms.
This emotional maelstrom can affect behaviour and judgement. Many patients report to me stomach pain, eating habit changes: loss or gain of appetite, intestinal upsets, sleep disturbances and loss of energy. Of all life’s stresses, mourning can seriously test your natural defense systems. Existing illnesses may worsen or new conditions may appear.
In stressful and sad times you don’t need people around you who do not support you. You need to surround yourself with loving human beings who actually care about you. Go out with them, trust them if they have proven to you that they are loyal and faithful.
Having and caring for pets like dogs, cats, birds, is another way to find comfort. I especially love cats, but others prefer dogs or birds. Some people don’t like animals and would rather care for plants. Therefore, get into planting, gardening, farming and grafting. Some of my patients have expressed their liking towards social activities like volunteering, helping others, “not being at home where there are so many memories” — they say. It is fine, but remember, sooner or later you have to face reality and stay at home. So do the volunteering for another reason such as helping others and just “not” to be at home.
Remember: After the storm, calm is restored
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I survived a suicide attempt. However my friend, he did not. This is what suicide looks like. This is him after hanging himself, right before he died. February 25th 2010. The difference between us is nothing, except our resources—--Malcolm Gladwell
By Cortland Pfeffer
There is enormous stigma associated with the word “suicide.” People cringe when you even mention the word and immediately change the subject. If we are afraid to talk about it, how on earth do we think we are going to prevent it? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States, taking more than 40,000 per year. At this rate, in one decade, we lose 400,000 people to suicide – equivalent to the entire population of Oakland, California.
When someone is suicidal, the typical reaction is “don’t talk like that!” or “that’s not even funny.” Or it turns to simplifying the situation such as, “other people have it worse than you,” or “just snap out of it, things will get better.” Nobody wants to “deal with it” and most people will adamantly refuse to even discuss it. You may even be considered selfish for having those thoughts and leaving close ones behind.
But when suicide does occur, the response is quite the opposite. Suddenly, everyone is there and feels terrible. They did not see the signs, never saw it coming, and can only talk about the amazing qualities of the deceased. It even goes as far as to hear people saying, “why didn’t they just reach out?”
If anyone has ever lost someone to suicide, they know the tremendous amount of pain associated. There may not be a worse feeling in the world. There are so many unanswered questions, “what ifs”, and “Should haves”. In the end, nobody commits suicide because they want to die, they commit suicide because they want the pain to go away.
I was suicidal, Joe committed suicide.
Part of the reason Joe is dead is because of the stigma associated with suicide along with the professionals he worked with that neglected and labeled him. He did not get treated as he deserved.
Joe didn’t have money, my family did. He went to jail and stayed long-term, I went to jail and got bailed out. He stayed in jail, while I was offered treatment instead. His crimes were all non-violent drug possession charges, mine were DUI, assault, and disorderly.
The difference? I had money and resources. Based on the information in the paragraph above, is there any other reason for the difference in penalties?
Joe and I were also born with the same temperament, which is more in tune with others emotions and greater sensitivity. This is neither good nor bad, just the way we were born. This is not to say that being emotional is guaranteed to create issues.
To be on this far end of the spectrum, along with consistently being denied needed support, along with the unhealthy environment is a formula for addiction. They refer to this as the biopsychosocial model. The biology is the genetics, the psychological refers to the emotional neglect and trauma, and the sociological refers to growing up in a broken home, overpopulated schools with minimal resources, poverty, and lack of positive role models.
My condolences to his family and all cyclists who love this sport. A great loss today in the professional cycling community and all of us amateur cyclists. Rest in peace.
The Belgian cyclist Michael Goolaerts, 23 years old, has died in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix race.
The 23-year-old’s death was confirmed by Véranda’s Willems-Crelan in a statement on their Twitter account.
Goolaerts was taken to a hospital after receiving CPR treatment on the side of the road after a crash.
The statement from Véranda’s Willems-Crelan read: “It is with unimaginable sadness that we have to communicate the passing of our rider and friend Michael Goolaerts. He passed away on Sunday evening at 22.40 in Lille hospital in the presence of his family members and loved ones, who we keep in our thoughts. He died of cardiac arrest, all medical assistance was to no avail.”
The race was won by the Slovakian world champion Peter Sagan.
“C’est avec une tristesse inimaginable que nous devons annoncer que notre coureur et ami Michael Goolaerts est décédé” ce dimanche “à 22h40 à l’hôpital de Lille, en présence de sa famille et de ses proches“, a tweeté l’équipe belge.