Leanne's Last Post: Machu Piccu

Hello family, friends, and followers,

The title of this last post may be a bit misleading so I apologize.  I've been stuck on this post for a long time.  Leanne picked out the pictures for this last post so I just didn't know what to do with it.  After nearly eight months I've decided to not write it but just leave the pictures.  It hurts too much to dive into what Leanne was thinking when she picked these photos.  Obviously I remember being there and know what she was thinking but it's too difficult right now to do it.

Everybody knows the terrible events that happened nearly six months ago and I'm sad to say that I can't shed any light on it in this post because Leanne was as happy as could be during this section of our trip.  I had no indication of what was going to happen on the worst day of my life, January 17th, 2014.  It will forever be a day that a huge piece of my soul died.  I am two different people now.  The person that was before that day and the person that I am now.  A strange transformation happens when you lose the love of your life to death.  You care about nothing and your "Give a shit" level drops to next to nothing.  There's not a thing in this world that can affect me and I don't care what people say about the whole ordeal or what I do now.

When Leanne picked these pictures she was happy just like she always was.  Leanne was not a depressed person, Leanne had depression.  The difference in the two is as far apart as the people that can't recognize this.  They might as well live on different planets.  During the whirlwind of memorial services that Leanne had one group said that they don't want to remember Leanne as a depressed person.  LEANNE WAS NOT A DEPRESSED PERSON, SHE HAD DEPRESSION.  I remember the anger that this made me feel but I sucked it up.  The danger in this type of thinking is that we learn nothing.  The stigma of depression rolls on and nobody notices.  This is the exact thinking that feeds the stigma and changes nothing.  This type of poisonous thought is something that we all must change.

Thanks for listening to my rant.  I could have gone on and on but I want to get to the photos:































































































































  

Thanks for following.

Cheers,

Leanne and Josh

23 comments:

  1. Such a bright smile and cheerful spirit... that's how i'll remember her! Thanks for sharing these pictures... as I know they are priceless treasures from the wonderful and exciting times you shared together. Gone too soon but never forgotten!

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  2. Beautiful!!! Praying for you. I understand your pain. The love of my life also took his life in March of 2013.

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  3. Josh,
    Thank you for the pictures and your honesty. I am a complete stranger that has followed your posts. You and Leanne gave such wonderful, funny and informative stories of your adventures. I enjoyed every post. Please know complete strangers care for you and wish you only the best. Stay strong and still try to enjoy your life.

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  4. Thank you for this post. I, too, have never met you or Leanne but followed your journey. I have no words to give you comfort, but you both continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  5. Awesome pictures! Thanks for sharing your life travels with us.. May you find peace!

    Andy

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  6. Thank you for posting these last pictures of your journey as difficult as that had to be for you.

    Your journey needs to continue and I hope that your healing leads you to a place where you can begin new adventures. She will never be forgotten or replaced in your heart and soul but when you are ready for your next chapter I wish you happiness and love again.

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  7. Thank you for this post. I didn't know Leanne, but I lived vicariously through your adventures. I feel like I got to know her (as much as one can online) and my heart ached when I heard what happened. I hate this. I hope that your pain will dull, and that you can start to feel alive again. I know this all sounds trite, but you have lots of "Anonymous's" around the world who think of you. you are not alone.

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  8. I am so so sorry for your loss. I totally understand the having depression but not being a depressed person. Unless you go through it or are close to someone who goes through it one can't fully understand. It is a personal hell. You are in my prayers- can't imagine what you have gone through. I love this blog and I hope you never take it down. It is a beautiful reminder to me of how life is to be lived to the fullest but never taken for granted and how one of us can be gone in the blink of an eye. I do know that you will see her again and that families can be together forever! xoxo

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  9. I'm so very sorry for your loss. Love and miss you man,
    C Enloe

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  10. Leanne was such a beautiful person, inside and out. I have been moved by you and Leanne's story, as my husband had clinical depression and took his own life also. After some time has passed, you will be able to remember Leanne without having her death overshadow your love and everything else that was good--and understand how well she lived her life, and how hard she must have had to try, with this terrible disability. My heart goes out to you.

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  11. Josh, I am sorry for your tremendous loss. My name is also Leanne and that is how I stumbled upon your story when I was reading about depression. I am depressed - OR - I have depression...maybe both. Please forgive my ignorance, but I truly do not understand what you mean by "Leanne was not a depressed person, Leanne had depression." Can you elaborate further, as it may be crucially important for people to realize the difference - especially before it's too late for their loved ones. As of yesterday, another woman (and mother of two), Jennifer Huston, appears to have committed suicide and was not depressed according to her husband. I think you may have special "layman's" discernment that could be crucial to people's conception of what depression is and is not. I acknowledge that you are frustrated with those that don't fully understand your point. However, someone like me - and many others - could potentially benefit from what that insight means. As far as I knew, they were the same (adjective versus noun)...or so I thought. Please help if possible and take care of yourself; so many people care about you.

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  12. I think your words on depression versus depressed person were superb. I am amazed how many people don't/can't/won't understand this. Your and Leanne's journey has struck a chord with many of us and we will carry it with us for a lifetime. Perhaps it has helped people in many ways as well, I feel like it has helped me. I am seeking counseling, due in part to your story. It made me realize some things about myself. I have traveled extensively, I have an incredible loving spouse I am madly in love with, I am the life of the party and quick with a joke, I have a job I love and that is fulfilling, yet I spend a good deal of my time feeling horrible inside. I have a great life by anyone's standards, and while not overtly suicidal, I am often comforted into sleep by the hope I will not wake up. It puts my mind at ease to think of that. I keep hoping for death through some accident or illness. People always think "there must be a sign" but I can honestly say I am an expert at hiding it. Again most people just don't understand depression. So I thank you and Leanne for your story, and know that it inspires and helps people.

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    1. This article about the recent death of Robin Williams explains some of the differences between being sad and having depression. http://news.yahoo.com/robin-williams-death-difference-between-depression-normal-sadness-012550678.html

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    2. Thanks for that Hank. I'm going to use this on the UpFoundation's Facebook page.

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  13. Thank you Josh and Leanne for sharing your adventure with the world. Josh my heart aches for you and your family and your beautiful Leanne's family. Hugs to you from Florida.

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  14. I learned about your story after a fellow suicide survival posted your story in our group. I`m so sorry about your loss. She is so beautiful and full of love. I can understand how it feels like when we lose a spouse to suicide though happily married and in love. After 19 months I still can`t believe that my husband killed himself. We were heavenly in love. His suicide letter was more like a love letter. He didn't have any signs of depression. He was himself a suicide survival so perhaps genetic somehow was involved. Not sure. Please know that you aren`t alone. They are many out there like us.

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    1. Thank you for your comment! I just got around to reading comments and cleaning up all the spam comments. I'm so sorry you had to go through this. It really is the worse feeling and such a heavy burden for anybody to carry. Please take care of yourself. I'm not sure if you'll see this but I'm thinking of finishing up the blog. There is still a couple of months that I haven't finished. I think after two years I may be ready.

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  15. Praying for you. Depression is real. God help us all.

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  16. It certainly is. Thank you for reading this and leaving a comment so long after this happened. Take care of yourself.

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  17. I knew Leanne many years ago. She was a classmate of my brother and sister at Roswell. I remember when I found out about when she was missing and everyday I shared your posts and pictures in hopes that it would help locating her. I cannot fathom the pain and worry you were in then and what you've gone through since, but all I remember of Leanne is her kindness. I was 5 years younger than her, but I was always hanging out with my sister and her friends and Leanne often was in that same circle and I always remember how incredibly sweet she was and her beautiful smile. She radiated. I think about her now and again and I hope she has found peace, but I hope you and your family and her family have also found peace. We lost my father 6 years ago and I understand too well the grief you're faced with every single day. All you can do is take it one day at a time, one moment at a time, and try to keep her spirit alive through your love and actions. I am sending love to you, to your family, and to the Hecht family always. ��

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