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Lost loved ones: I hope he found peace
I never truly realised how much I needed you in my life until you were gone, until I was unable to hear your voice, to text you or call you no matter what time of the day.
Brendon and I were once married, and although we were divorced when he passed, our friendship was something we had worked hard to maintain and grow for our daughter, our only child.
I met him when I was 17, and he had been a daily part of my life for 15 years since that day. We married when I was 23, and a year later were blessed with the most beautiful daughter, who we treasured dearly.
Our relationship at times was tumultuous and fraught, however we persevered and worked hard to keep things going. Our daughter was the light of our lives and we knew she needed to have healthy, happy parents.
The majority of the time Brendon was happy-go-lucky and willing to help anyone. He had a huge heart, a tender touch, but had a tortured soul and sadly he turned to drugs to help ease his pain. He was a gifted timber floor installer; he was amazing at his job and was sought out in the industry to complete some beautiful work in some amazing homes.
Sadly, beneath the surface the drugs were taking over his life, so I decided I had to leave.
We were apart for three years, and then made the divorce final. I remember standing in the court house signing off the divorce papers holding his hand, making the lady behind the counter wonder what we were doing. We left the court that day and hugged, I was sad that it had to be like this, but sadly relieved as I was able to move forward without the weight of his sadness pulling me back.
Over the next few years we saw each other at least three times a week, and spoke or text every other day. Mostly in regards to our daughter, but also just to talk. He knew me better than anyone, and same goes for me. I could call him if I was lost somewhere and he would be my own personal GPS to help get me back on track, if something broke in my house he would turn up with tools and fix whatever it was.
If I needed money for anything, he was always there helping me out. That's what Brendon did, he helped everyone. My sisters would call him if they needed back up, my mum still text him on his birthday, he was still invited to family gatherings as he was still Uncle Brendon to all the kids.
Sadly, his ongoing mental health issues, combined with the drug use, changed him, made him sad, made him believe that by taking his own life he would ease the pain and no longer be a bother to anyone anymore.
What he didn't realise was how much we all needed him, our daughter, my family, his friends and mostly myself. This last year has been a whirlwind of emotions, I miss him so much, I miss his smart remarks, his handsome face, the look on our daughter's face when he would turn up. I miss calling him to tell her about her accomplishments, calling him when I was feeling down.
I talk to him often, and when I look up to the stars at night I look for the brightest one, as I know it is him looking down on us all. I wish that he has found the peace he was so desperate for.
Lifeline: 0800 543 354 - Provides 24 hour telephone counselling
Youthline: 0800 376 633 or free text 234 - Provides 24 hour telephone and text counselling services for young people
Samaritans: 0800 726 666 - Provides 24 hour telephone counselling
Tautoko: 0508 828 865 - provides support, information and resources to people at risk of suicide, and their family, whanau and friends
Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (noon to midnight)
Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (4pm - 6pm weekdays)
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