I remember that day like it was yesterday. Casually strolling into the Coach Outlet Store a couple cities over. I was surrounded by all of the beautiful handbags that were hanging neatly on display. My mom had drug me into this store because they were having some kind of sale, I guess. My 10-year-old body was exhausted from all of the shopping that we had done earlier, so it wasn't a surprise that I had quickly scoped out a bench in the corner to rest my size five feet.
Finally, I was well rested enough to be able to trudge over to my mom who had a bag in her hand with C's that met in the middle. She was quietly examining it and finally made her decision to purchase the bright yellow bag. When we got home later that evening, my mom quickly rushed into her bedroom past my dad who subsequently yelled "What was that?" my mom shouted back, "Nothing!". And that's when I knew, handbags were the answer to all of my 10-year-old problems. Now that was about eight years ago and becoming the woman that I am today, still rely heavily on handbags.
My collection has grown to see the brands named: Coach, Michael Kors, Louis Vuitton, and my personal favorite, Kate Spade. I know exactly what draws me to the name Kate Spade. The bright colors, the unique designs, the length of the strap that sits comfortably on your shoulder. I really hadn't known anything about Kate Spade as a person other than knowing that she had sold her company name over to Neiman Marcus in 2009, but that didn't stop me from admiring the beautiful bags. Every time that I stepped foot into a Macy's or even a store such as Marshalls, I ran over to the purse section to scour for a piece of leather that had Kate Spade neatly printed on the front in gold lettering.
The joy that this name alone brings me is indescribable. My first personal purchase of a Kate Spade bag went something like the following, I had just gotten off of work and decided to do a little perusing of the handbag section. I had almost given up my search when I went to the other side of a display and found a bright purple Kate Spade handbag waiting to be purchased. I knew my mom would be upset with me if I purchased the royal purple masterpiece. I looked at the price tag with fearful eyes, how much could this amazing thing cost a 17-year-old?
The first thing that caught my eye was a bright red clearance ticket plastered to the original. I was filled with excitement as I looked down at the new price to find it was only $50! I knew I had to get it so I promptly called my mother and was sent immediately to voicemail. So I tried again, knowing that she was at a Chicago Cubs game, but this was way more important than that. I called again and again until she finally picked up, I said in one breath, "there is a Kate Spade at work, it's only $50 and I'm going to buy it", she sighed into the phone and said okay only because she knew I was going to get it even if she told me no.
I ran up to the checkout counter where all of my friends were laughing because I make a purchase at least once a week, and carefully set down my new favorite item. They rang me up and out the door I went, excited to show the world my new handbag. This went on for a few months every time I saw a Kate Spade I had to at least ask my mom if I could get it. Finally, I gave up my conquests to settle with the bags I have. It was about 3 days before my graduation open house that I got the news the Kate Spade had killed herself.
I promptly read all of the articles I could about why, how, and what she had left behind. I had started to cry while reading all of these heartbreaking articles, learning that she had left behind a 13-year-old daughter. As I was discussing this tragic event with my family that night, I realized that Kate had it all. The fame, the money, the loving husband and daughter, but it wasn't enough to keep her alive. As more and more facts came pouring out about this event, I began to learn that Kate was in a very bad point in her life.
She had severe depression, a mental illness that many people have. I began to ask myself why she didn't seek help, why she didn't pay someone to listen to her problems. Then I realized, not everyone can heal, not everyone can just talk about their problems and be okay again. Some people say suicide is selfish, I, on the other hand, don't. Yes, I do believe that some people could get better when they reach out for help, but some can't.
Some are too far down a path that doesn't allow you to turn around. I believe that everyone that suffers from depression is in a line, this line is headed towards a sea and you can't look up or around you because there is a heavy force weighing down your head. You are walking and walking until you finally feel your feet hitting a pier and you can either jump and end it all or you can hope to God the person behind you wraps their arms around you and brings you back. Kate didn't have anyone that could wrap their arms around her and bring her back to the sand. We could all learn a valuable lesson from Mrs. Spade, no matter how successful you are, mental illness doesn't avoid the well-off. But always remember, there are multiple people there to pull you back to the sand.
As always, thank you for reading!