Put your cape on

Honoring the life of Jeremy “Superhero” Squires and supporting suicide prevention.

#capemoment

 A few weeks after I lost my younger brother to suicide, I was standing in a grocery store line at Trader Joes, trying to keep myself together long enough to pay for a few items and leave. The kind woman working the register attempted to engage me in friendly conversation. I kept my eyes down, giving one-word answers, just trying to survive a simple daily activity that was no longer simple. The store was busy. There was a long line of people behind me. But after I paid, the woman told another employee to go get some flowers, then she came around the counter with the flowers, gave me a big hug and said, “You look like you need these.” I started crying right then. I didn’t have the strength, or the desire, to explain why I was breaking down in the middle of a grocery store. All I could think to say to her was, “I couldn’t find my cape today.” She hugged me tighter and said, “That’s okay, I’ve got you.”

It was a cape moment—a simple kindness that saved me in a way that she could not have possibly known. At that point in time I was in the middle of planning a celebration of life for my brother. It had a superhero theme, because my brother lived his entire youth in a cape, and as an adult he was quick to come to everyone’s rescue. But he could never find the love for himself that he freely gave to others. He couldn’t save himself.

A cape moment is an opportunity to help or be helped. It’s that simple. One of my brother’s favorite things was leaving big tips for service workers, just to see their smiles. That’s a cape moment. So is offering a hug and some flowers. The simple act of letting someone know that they are loved, and that they matter, can make all the difference. 

***

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273- 8255, text “HOME” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org

Click here for more resources

Losing my brother to suicide has taken me on a roller coaster ride of emotion. It’s complicated, sad and void of answers. This site is my attempt to find those answers and pass them on.

Want to be a Superhero? Donate $25 or more to the Jeremy Squires Memorial and Legacy Fund to help change the world one cape at a time.

Did someone cape up for you? Did you cape up for someone else? Read some touching cape moments and share yours here.

about

Jeremy with son Austin. Father's Day, 2000.

We lost Jeremy on December 25, 2018. We are still developing this site and creating the framework to spread the message. Please check back often. Thank you.

Losing my brother to suicide has taken me on a roller coaster ride of emotion. It’s complicated, sad and void of answers. I’m ok one minute, a wreck the next and then laughing the next at a memory. There’s no rhyme or reason. 

Jeremy and I experienced some trauma together in our youth and it bonded us like no other relationship can. However, while I was constantly searching for ways to work the trauma up and out of me (dance being the top choice), Jer was busy stuffing his down, internalizing it all into his core and taking on way too much responsibility for his young years.

The pressure he personally put on himself to be a care taker contributed a stressed out kid who would turn to substance abuse to release. A reprieve would happen when he discovered his passion to become a baker. Watching him open up his own bakery was something I will hold onto forever. He had obvious complete joy for the labor intense work of making bread and granola from scratch, even at 3am! 

The hard part of this equation that is difficult for me and others to understand how clearly Jeremy was always so eager to fill up everyone else’s cup, but, not his own. His addiction disease caused his brain to magnify his flaws out of proportion. He didn’t realize or accept that all the rest of us were full of imperfections…he seemed only capable of acknowledging his own. He felt such a lack of love for himself, that try as I might, along with an army of others…none of us could penetrate through for any extended period of time. 

To my sweet friends and family, who like me are also feeling deep sadness and the shock of this loss…know that Jer did write in his last moments that he felt at peace. May that bring us some comfort on our journey to heal our hearts. 

—- If you are experiencing your own deep sadness, or depression right now, know that YOU ARE LOVED! YOU MATTER! YOU ARE ENOUGH!! I will just keep shouting it from the rooftops and teaching it in my classes, under the disguise of dance, with all my might. 

Please, take a deep breath and reach out to those who love you. Let us know your fears and we will share ours. We will “cape up” and help. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! 💜💜💜

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273- TALK (8255), text “HOME” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org

CAPE UP

We all need saving sometimes. 

Our custom superhero cape is made in partnership with Everfan.com. The goal is to inspire people to “put their cape on” and take action when they see others in need.

Suicide and addiction touch countless families. These capes are a reminder that we can help save each other, one small act of kindness at a time. And when needed, we can “cape up” to ask for help when we need it most.

Each cape is made from 100% polyester satin and measures 24″ long.  The collar is 22″ and will fit around an adult’s neck.  FREE SHIPPING ON ALL ORDERS. 

CAPE MOMENTS

Small actions. Big impact.

A few nights ago, I’m am sitting alone in a restaurant close to the theater, waiting 2.5 hours for Blake to finish his School of Rock show and pick him up. Arctic temperatures here in Indianapolis combined with a heavy snow storm have made driving unsafe. I walk in the storm, thankful to finally find an open sports bar (Scotty’s) and claim a booth. I have a very nice server named Shiann (sp). As I wait for my food, I catch up on reading the news and come across an article about fashion icon Kate Spade, reminding me of her suicide in June 2018 and how people are keeping her memory alive. My server brings my dinner and her kind attention and energy is helping to keep me grounded while I read such triggering news. However, I finish the article and read a tag line at the bottom asking if “you or anyone you know is considering suicide…” and I am broken all over again. My mind whirls. I’m now also thinking of Anthony Bourdain’s death from suicide only a few days after Kate’s last summer. They both seemingly had everything available to them at their fingertips and living their dream lives. It’s shocking and doesn’t make any sense. Now I can’t help from questioning what more could I have done for my own brother. “Did Jeremy call this hotline number? Did he have this number? Should I have called this number?” I have no appetite. I turn my back to the other tables in the restaurant and sit facing one of the 20 plus TV screens emanating squeaky basketball shoes and announcers screaming out scores from different games.

I cry.

It’s loud in the restaurant, so it’s easy to not be noticed. I just stare in the direction of the TV in my booth…and cry.

An hour passes. I am no longer tearful, but I continue to disconnect myself from my surroundings and just hang in the balance. Then, out of the blue, as if by magic, a sweet friend from the tour slips into my booth to sit across from me. I am completely surprised because from where I have been seated in the restaurant, I don’t know how she saw me. I look at her and without saying anything…I cover my face with my hands. She moves over to my booth side and gives me the biggest, most helpful hug ever. I cry into her shoulder and just say “I’m so sad today.” I am thankful for the loud TV’s that offer cover of my meltdown. After a healing release of tears, I leave for the restroom to splash cold water on my face and compose myself. I head back to my booth. The downward spiral has been stopped. I am ok again, thanks to a kind server with a genuine smile and a sweet friend taking time to give me a hug and let me release.

Each time I seem to be heading into darkness, someone puts on their cape and saves me…in easy, simple ways. I repay the favor by putting on my cape and give an extra tip to my server (because that is what Jeremy loved to do…give a big tip to anyone who was serving him, whether he had the money or not). I pulled out a Cape Moment RED card to leave the server, wrote THANK YOU on the receipt and left the restaurant to pick up my kiddo and brave the drive back to the hotel.

The next day, I receive an email via the CapeMoment.com website that lifted my heart. Turns out the server, Shiann from the restaurant must have put the red capemoment card up on twitter and a beautiful stranger named Samantha reached out to me. See below:
“I saw a post on Twitter of the card you left a waitress, it made me look up your website and read your story. My heart is broken for your family and your younger brother. I lost my aunt to suicide in September 2016, and i can say over time it will get a little easier. Hang in there. ❣️Next time i am out i will do a random kind thing in honor of your brother.” 💜
And EVERY DAY since, I have received a kind message and donation from strangers visiting the site reminding us all that we are LOVED! This means everything. #capemoment is working. The cards and capes are creating purpose to something that feels so hard some days for me to deal with.
Thank you to everyone making a difference one cape at a time. If you would like to contribute, there is a Facebook fundraiser going on until February 10th or click the website below for ongoing donations and resources to help take action preventing suicide and addiction.

FB Fundraiser ends on Sunday February 10th at midnight (EST): https://www.facebook.com/donate/230436034499780/

Website: CapeMoment.com
***If you need a cape…please don’t hesitate to let me know. I have your back. No donation necessary, just message me. ***

Special shout out to my husband Brett Hullinger for designing the cards, capes, and website. He is, has been, always will be…my HERO!
#capemoment#capeup#helpmefindcheyennetwitterpost

It is with great humility that I post and carry a deep hope you will read it and watch the video below. ONE FINAL DAY! Please FB peeps help us out with $10 bucks on Feb 10th! If just half of my Facebook friends will please donate by Sunday at midnight, we can reach our goal of $10,000 (via FB or Venmo). Since I began honestly posting about the loss of my brother Jeremy a month ago, at least 43 people have directly reached out to me…more than one a day, who need help and support. THIS IS WORKING. IT IS OPENING PEOPLE UP AND HELPING. You see, 2 years ago, my brother attempted suicide around Christmas 2016. At that time, since there is such stigma surrounding it, I did not reach out and ask for help in a public way. I wish in hindsight I would have said “HELP, we are drowning! We are dealing with suicide and alcohol/opioid addiction in our family, CAN SOMEONE HELP ME WITH RESOURCES?” Because now, almost daily since I have been open about my brother’s death, I have encountered someone who has advice and additional treatments I could have used to help Jeremy and myself on his journey to maintaining his recovery. Some days I can’t help but cry and shout out that I could have done more and how I feel now it’s too late. I don’t want it to be too late for someone else. So, the thing that helps reduce my agony is to TAKE ACTION. I intend to promote a website with ideas and links to help others if they or someone close to them are dealing with addiction. Jeremy wrote in his final note that he could just not get over what had happened to him as a kid and it broke my heart. I intend to speak out and help educate kids on how to UPROOT those negative core beliefs BEFORE they get locked in and to teach the science behind waiting for the brain to develop to age 25 or later before any potential addictive substance is experienced. Please watch the video to see how Austin and I are planning to make a difference! And please go to the website that my superhero hubby Brett Hullinger created and is constantly updating as we move forward. If you can help us out with the fundraiser, I humbly ask for any donation you can spare. https://www.facebook.com/donate/230436034499780/
If you can help us with the CapeMoment.com website, an app, creating the superhero artwork we need for the kid powerpoint or anything you think can add to the supportive resource material we want to provide, please reach out.

PLEASE SHARE!

IF YOU NEED A CAPE NOW, LET ME KNOW! I will purchase one and get it mailed to you right away. No donation necessary. Jeremy’s son Austin Squires and I want to make sure everyone who will feel comforted by the warm embrace of a cape on their shoulders has one. We are changing the world…one capemoment at a time.
TELL US YOUR CAPE MOMENT AND WE WILL GET IT UP ON THE SITE.

Take photos of your capes and post for us!!

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273- TALK (8255), text “HOME” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org 

For those of you requesting to give away the capes you have donated on the form, please know they are finding their way to wonderful people! Just this past week, traveling on the road…I have found people who definitely needed a cape, along with a hug to keep moving onward and upwards. And to J.R. Green the cape you donated on Wednesday, it went to an amazing person I met who obviously does all they can to help save others daily. I thought it was appropriate J.R., since you live life uplifting those around you. You take care of many of us, myself included. (I will always cherish what you did for me in honor of losing my three little ones.)
Thank you all for caping up and helping out. Please know the capes and cards are working! I will be posting some video clips and more photos from the Celebration of Life event soon. It will help explain, before the fundraiser ends on Feb 10th, our goals to make a difference.
CapeMoment.com
Saving Ourselves One Cape At a Time
Only 2 days left: https://www.facebook.com/donate/230436034499780/

Accordion Content

Celebration of Life

Photos and video from the Celebration of Life event for Jeremy Squires.
January 16, 2019

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