I want badly to wake up tomorrow to a world where Robin Williams is still alive.
I want to wake up to a world in whichÂ Mrs. Doubtfire and Aladdin’sÂ Genie and Sean Maguire did not succumb to mental illness.
I want to wake up to a world where suicide is not the 10th leading cause of death in America.
I want to wake up to a world in which major depression and bipolar disorder are treated likeÂ illnessesÂ instead of scarlet letters.
I want to wake up to a world that embracesÂ genius and supportsÂ the fragility and instability that so often accompany it.
I want to wake up to a world that respects people with mental illness because they are people before they are ill.
I want to wake up to a world where no one feels so alone or messed up or out of control that he ends his own life.
I want to wake up in a world where we talk freely about mental illness.
Not just because someone died. Not just because there was a tragedy or a crime or a fiasco.
Just because it matters.
Because he mattered.
Because I matter and you matter and the 3,000 people who committed suicide today matter, and the 3,000 people who will commit suicide tomorrow matter.
Because mental illness matters.
And because, if it happenedÂ to Robin Williams, it could happen to me or to anybody like me.
© 2014, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.