MONDAY MAN: Setback changed his life
FOR THE PAST THREE YEARS, Kevin Pinder has been living his dream job as a broadcaster.
From young he dreamt of being a radio disc jockey and looked up to veterans like Malcolm X and Peter Coppin. So when he got the opportunity to embark on what he described as a beautiful journey at Christ Is The Answer (CITA) 90.1 FM, he jumped at it.
Life was blissful: he had a job that brought him joy, he was embarking on becoming an entrepreneur and was working towards marriage and children.
But just over five months ago Pinder’s mother, Junette, died from a diabetes-related illness and this shook his life like nothing had ever done before.
Kevin and his mother were very close. For his entire life she battled diabetes but that still never prepared him for her death. That’s why when she took her last breath on August 8, 2015, it had a tremendous effect on him.
“I honestly wouldn’t say I ever battled with depression but after my mum passed, I became severely depressed and a shadow of myself because I lost not only my mother but also my best friend,” he told the DAILY NATION during an interview.
Prior to that, the 30-year-old, who was accustomed to helping others through good and bad times via his reach at CITA, had always been a fun-loving, easy-going yet no-nonsense individual.
Kevin absolutely loved cricket, both playing and watching. He was a big West Indies cricket fan, even though they’ve been on a losing streak for most of his life, and he was a huge music lover with a very eclectic taste. But his norm was severely rocked by his mum’s death.
He recalled that the depression was so great, he didn’t know what to do, how to live and for that matter, how or if he could ever move on.
Born and raised in Sargeant’s Village, Christ Church, Pinder is a former pupil of Vauxhall Primary and Garrison Secondary schools. He was born into a Christian household, so from early he was exposed to church and Christian beliefs and lifestyle. But in spite of this, like many other teenagers he had a rebellious phase that lasted for nearly a decade.
When his mother died, he was filled with a sense of hopelessness and unanswered questions. However, he said that instead of blaming the Lord for her passing, he gained a renewed trust in God. And sitting one day reasoning to himself, he was taken back to the reason why he surrendered his heart to Christ at the age of 24.
“I was in a season of life where death was all around me. I had lost my grandfather, uncle, aunt and some friends in quick succession. So every time I went to church it was literally for a funeral and it was at a funeral that I actually gave my life to Christ.
“The pastor said something I will never forget. He said: ‘Exams, parties and job interviews are all things we prepare for in detail, but all these things come more than once in life, but death comes only once and yet most of us are unprepared’. That really made me think about if I was to die, then where would I spend eternity and I wasn’t willing to take the gamble saying heaven or hell isn’t real. So you could say I found new life at a funeral,” he said.
Unsure of how to take the first steps to handling his feelings, Pinder took an unscheduled trip overseas just to unwind, grieve, refocus and compose himself.
“It wasn’t a cure-all but it definitely helped a lot, along with tons of prayers from friends and family and having what I consider to be one of the best circle of friends a guy could ask for.”
Today he wants to be a testimony for anyone battling depression to know that there is an end, there is answer in the Lord.
“My role in this world I’d say is to be an encourager. We all need to hear words of encouragement at different points in life and the power of those words should and cannot be underestimated. So I’d say I want my role in life to be a person who helps others see and realise the best in themselves.
“One thing I definitely learned from my mum’s death was the importance of having good people around you. Positive, uplifting people because in a time like that, apart from God, you really rely on the strength of those around you. My mum’s death also gave me another incentive to lead a God-fearing life because I know she is in heaven and I want to be reunited with her there,” Pinder added. (SDB Media)