Hi, I’m still here.

Hello everyone. You may have noticed that I haven’t been on social media, or posting to this site, for the past few months.

In February, right around the time of my last posting, a friend of mine took his life. Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time I’ve grieved for a fellow military service member under these circumstances; suicide is a tragically prevalent occurrence among active duty and veterans. But Bryan’s passing really pulled the carpet from under me. I had visited Florida just a couple weeks before he took his life, and we had excitedly chatted about his next assignment, which was going to require him to be in top shape. “Let’s meet up soon to talk diet stuff”–his last words to me.

I’m still processing this grief: I am equal parts angry, bitter, and saddened. Our final conversation was left unfinished, the perfect metaphor for all the relationships severed by his one, ultimately cruel, act. But the best way for me to work through this frustration has been to retreat from social media, and use that extra time as an opportunity to strengthen my bonds with those around me. I’ve always been a private person (this whole “blog” thing really unexpectedly blew up on me), and so it felt right for me to step away for a while.

At the same time, I was becoming keenly aware that my online presence is missed, and so I decided to jump on to let you know that I’m fine, and I’ll be back soon. I’m in the revision stage of my next cookbook; we had to go back to the drawing board a bit, but overall I’m very happy with how things are turning out. The good news is that I trimmed out quite a few recipes from the book, and so I have plenty of new, excellent recipes to share with you once I get back into the swing of things. It’s going to be a bit longer still, as I also have some work-related travel over the summer.

Thanks for sticking around, and for your patience, and I’ll be in touch soon.

Russ

67 thoughts on “Hi, I’m still here.

  1. I saw your post and, at first, thought someone was talking to me. My son killed himself on Memorial Day in Florida two years ago. He worked in emergency medical services. He was 21. I hope we can all figure out a way to end the suicide epidemic. I’m sorry you have known this grief as well. I will never understand.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Russ, I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. There just isn’t anything but the love of those around you and God that can help. Prayers for you, your family,and your friend’s family.

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  3. Thank you for your honest and thoughtful post. I am sorry for your loss. I grew up in the military, my father was in the Air Force more than 25 years, serving in Korea and Vietnam; my grandfather served in the Navy in WWII. It seems the stress placed on the young men serving now is much greater than it was even then, and our society seems increasingly less civil, less kind and less compassionate. I hope you find some peace and comfort in the strengthened bonds with other loved ones.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Blessings and prayers to you and your extended family. Take your time. You are more than honorable for letting us know your position. Life is short and friends are precious. Thank you for loving your friend. Come back when you are ready. We will be here!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  5. So sorry to hear of your loss. Just take one step at a time. We will all be here awaiting your return. May your friend, Bryan RIP.

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  6. Sorry for your loss and I know how it is grieving a loved one. Take all the time you need, we will be here. I can’t wait for your book.

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  7. Right on, brother. I’m with you all the way, having suffered through several similar tragedies.
    Just remember to reach out for help in your grieving. It makes you no less a man to all it out with a therapist. It saved my life, man. It may save yours, too. Peace, Love & Peppers.

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  8. I’ve been a long-time lurker, don’t think I’ve ever commented, but I’m moved and sorry for your loss. The unfortunate frequency of military suicide is something that is woefully overlooked in the world. I have no answers, I’m so sorry and hope you do find some peace….

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  9. Sending my deepest condolences. Suicide has touched my family, so I have some understanding of what you have been going through. Take care. We will all continue to keep you in our thoughts, and will look forward to your returning when you are ready.

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  10. Hi Russ

    Thanks for your email, and my sincere condolences for the tragic loss of your friend. Please read this. https://www.jw.org/en/publications/magazines/g201404/go-on-living-why/

    Best,

    Keziah

    On Fri, Jun 22, 2018 at 5:08 AM, The Domestic Man wrote:

    > Russ Crandall posted: ” Hello everyone. You may have noticed that I > haven’t been on social media, or posting to this site, for the past few > months. In February, right around the time of my last posting, a friend of > mine took his life. Unfortunately, this isn’t the first” >

    Like

  11. So sorry for your loss. Thanks for the update. Always enjoy your posts. Look forward to the next one, whenever you’re ready to come back.

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  12. So sorry for your loss. You have helped me heal over the years after reading about how you found a way to improve your health after almost dying yourself, and I’m forever grateful. I’m not crazy about social media myself, but there are exceptions when someone like you comes along who can have such an impact on someone’s life and help them heal without ever knowing it. Thank you for sharing and I look forward to your new book and your return when you are ready.

    Like

  13. I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. I am glad that you are taking the time that you need in the way that you need. My prayers for you, your friend and his family. Return when you are able; we’ll be here!

    Like

  14. Hi Russ,  Thank you for sharing your devastating loss with us. I hope that you continue to keep your bonds strong with the people around you; it is so very important. I have experienced a loss that woke me up to the same need in my life and honestly have neglected a lot of relationships over the past few years. Your email has reminded me I need to reach out and keep-up with my loved ones and friends better than I have been. The continual cultivation of relationships is much more important than any blog, book, or even followers. I enjoy your recipes, as they are so unique in the food blogger space. I pray that your loss is a catalyst that draws you into close relationship with God, for without Him there is no hope. Love and Hugs. 

    CandaceThames

    https://bycandace.com/ 

    Like

  15. I’m glad you are taking some time for self-care. Your posts, books and support mean the world to me, as you were a real inspiration for my family to get back to what’s important – from proper eating, to taking care of our hearts and minds in many other ways. I’m looking forward to your new book, and hopefully to see you as a presence in my life again. You have been missed, and the work you do is important. Time heals, Russ. Know that.

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  16. Russ, I’m so sorry for your loss. As a mental health care provider, I’m keenly aware of the lack of adequate mental health services for military members and their families. I do want to let you and your readers know about the Give an Hour resource. Through Give an Hour, I provide no-cost mental health services to military personnel and their families. This organization was formed to meet the unmet needs of active duty, retired military, and their extended families and spouses.

    https://giveanhour.org.

    Like

  17. That’s so rough. I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope you’ll take as much time as you need and you’ll come back when you’re ready.

    Like

  18. The passing of someone close is never easy, your sorrow is yours to bare, but you are not alone and in many thoughts hoping the pain will ease. Sorry for your loss, time and support of your loved ones will heal.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I just signed up on this site and yours is the first article I chose to read. Russ, you have obviously touched many people with your writing. Your heartfelt post is very honest and personal. I am so sorry for your loss. Unfortunately, many people are grieving a similar loss and have to deal with the survivorship on a daily basis. Please know that many are with you in spirit. You are doing the right thing to focus on those around you, as you can build strength with those relationships. I wish you peace and renewed strength to carry on with joy, love and purpose in your heart! I am so srry for your loss.

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  20. Hi, Russ- My heart hurts as yet another person is added to the list of those grieving a loved one from a suicide. I am new to WordPress and yours is the first article I read. I did not even know what I was clicking on. I doubt it is a coincidence. This information is yours to have and do with however you see fit. I work at a nonprofit organization in northern lower Michigan. We work with individuals and families grieving the death of a loved one. Unfortunately, our support groups for those grieving a loved one from suicide are usually our largest. We are not a counseling group but instead, one that offers no-cost grief support. Feel free to check our website. If something strikes you and you would like to learn more, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are here for you. http://www.MyMichaelsPlace.net. Mindy

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  21. Hi Russ – thanks for sharing your pain with all of us. That is an awful thing to go through. As an introvert, I’m sure you would much rather stay quiet and reflect, grieve and heal without having to share it with anyone. Even though I don’t’ personally know you, your blog has shared a piece of you that I greatly appreciate and enjoy, and I send you a big hug. A tragic loss. Take care, and I look forward to hearing from you again soon!

    Like

  22. So sorry to heard about your friend. Glad your doing better. Remember God is always good and He loves you!! Sincerely
    Blanca Blick

    Like

  23. Hey Russ, I just wanted to leave this here to show compassion and support. Death is always sad, but not being able to understand why makes it so much harder to appreciate what experiences we got. I hope you and his other friends feel better soon.

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  24. Bless, O God of eternal life,
    all who have died
    by their own hand.
    Grant them peace
    from their inner turmoil
    and the compassion of your love.
    Comfort those who mourn
    their loved ones.
    Strengthen them to face the questions of pain,
    the guilt and anger,
    the irreparable loss.
    Help us to reach out in love
    to others who prefer death
    to the choices of life
    and to their families who grieve.
    Amen.

    Like

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