by Terri Wagner
Because the Osmonds were a big part of my introduction to the gospel (read that without them I might never have known about the church), I've always felt a deep connection to them although I've never actually met one of them. I followed their ups and downs with great interest. Hearing about Marie's son was sad; sadder because my family has members suffering from this terrible disease and yes even suicide has been a part of the equation. Suicide attempts even more so.
I was blessed to believe things always got better eventually. It took me a long time to understand that's a rare gift of the Spirit and furthermore people can't just "have" that feeling. Like a testimony, for some, such a feeling must be nurtured and developed.
I still have family members that we "watch" carefully wondering what their final decision will be. I know what affect such an act has on the extended family and how hard it is to cope with the aftermath.
I have also grown in my understanding of this disease and why it's a disease and how little we understand it. But here's where my natural optimism sustains me because I think but someday we'll be able to cure mental/emotional disorders the way we can measles, mumps and even the plague. That would have been unthinkable decades ago. Time is on our side.
But for today, there is only sadness and a longing to understand these disorders of the mind and spirit. And yes selfishly gratitude that I was blessed with "merry heart" and a "happy spirit."