But alas, after looking around the Internet for confirmation (starting with Snopes.com), I learned the sad truth. Legendary comedian/actor, Robin Williams, had passed away of a suspected suicide.
I haven't really said much about how I felt about the news. The most I've done until now is change my profile and cover photos on my private Facebook account to a screenshot from "Hook", and a sad Genie from "Aladdin".
I found out that the news was true through 2 very reliable sources - Lisa Jakub and Mara Wilson. Lisa played the role of his oldest daughter in "Mrs. Doubtfire", while Mara played the youngest. Both have left the acting profession since and have their own blogs (you can find links to these at our Links page). The messages they posted on Facebook were enough for me to know it was the real deal:
Lisa: "Sometimes, there are no words."
Mara: "I am very sad, very confused, and probably not going to check social media for a while."
Needless to say, this cast a gloom over the day (and most likely a number of days, to be honest). Robin Williams was (and still is) an inspiration in the world of comedy. His role on "Mork & Mindy" was the first thing I saw as a child and I was very much amused. Later I would see his films, such as "Jumanji", "Mrs. Doubtfire", "Aladdin" "Patch Adams", "Hook", "Jack", "Flubber" and more recently, the "Night at the Museum" series, "RV: Runaway Vacation" and "World's Greatest Dad". His guest appearance on the American version of "Whose Line is it Anyway?" is one of my overall Top 5 episodes of the series.
The list goes on.
Parts of my own comedy and acting is directly influenced by him among many others. For that I am very grateful.
What gets me though is the whole suicide thing. It makes no sense to me as to why it came to this, especially when it's someone as full-on and energetic as Robin Williams. At face value, you wouldn't expect someone such as this would be capable of doing it. But that just goes to show that you should never judge a book by its cover. Even the happiest person in the world has their own issues. Give me the name of someone that doesn't have a problem. They can have a cookie.
The topic of suicide can be a little taboo at times, and the same goes for depression. I feel that it's because there's still a lot of misunderstanding and/or a complete lack of understanding overall. Take my word, this topic should never ever be overlooked.
If you feel that the world is on your shoulders and that everything is too tough for you to handle, please do NOT give up on hope. Suicide is never an option, and don't let anybody tell you otherwise.
On the flipside, if you are concerned about someone you may think is having problems, whether it be showing on the surface or deep down, don't be afraid to help them. Quite often, talking is a great way of doing so. Trust me, I've had experience in this a number of times...
If you're not sure who to talk to or what to talk about, there are still ways to help out. It could be an activity or something like that. Also, where there's a lack of things to say, there is plenty of room for good, old-fashioned listening.
There are also some helpful people you can call over the phone if you're in need. I don't know all of the phone numbers for the helplines in your country, but there will definitely be ones available in your local phone book. It might take a few minutes to look them up (the Internet is useful for this), but there is always somebody at the other end of the phone line standing by.
The same goes for those who want to help people with depression. If you're not sure what to say or do for those who suffer from this evil thing, you too could call the same helpline for some handy advice on what you could do to contribute towards saving lives.
This is the longest blog I've done on this site (and in my life), so I shall wrap things up here. I hope you're all well and are doing OK...and I seriously mean that. You are awesome. Remember that.
Much love from us all to you out there, especially to those who have been touched by the life of Robin Williams over the years. We are mourning with you.
Rest in peace, Robin. We will miss you.