Waking to the death of Anthony Bourdain put me in a sour mood- actually no, put me at a breaking point. Enough with the suicides. Enough with awesome people dying. My fragile little heart is flaking. Something needs to change or we will fall and make excuses for the trend. When someone commits or attempts suicide, we immediately start downloading and researching their entire mental health history. Were they depressed? Were they in therapy? Did they have a disorder? Did they take drugs? Suffer any trauma? We interrogate their history, the good, the bad, the ugly, the pretty and put it through a microscopic lenses then use our egos like gloves to analyze but separate ourselves from their actions. As a person who spent her entire life going through long periods of depression, contrary to social awareness, I’m not fucking ill. I don’t have a disease. I get sad sometimes, like everyone else and continue to deal with it in my own ways. Every degree of sadness has its own mechanisms: Sometimes I drink, Sometimes I write, sometimes I don’t do anything but let the snot hang off my nose. Sometimes I call my sister. Sometimes I text a friend. Sometimes I do karate. Sometimes I visit my mom. Sometimes I spend hours at my desk, wallowing in thoughts, head down. Sometimes I have panic attacks. Sometimes I breathe.
As a conscious being, fully aware of mortality, even if you don’t commit, could you live a life without thinking about suicide? We can plan. Map out our lives. Put money into our pensions, build a future, mental brick by mental brick but the only part that will always be certain, is death. Death is the muse to our cells; it keeps our blood moving, heart pumping, lungs breathing. Our body is biologically engineered to do everything in its capacity to keep us alive yet death will always be the ironic player in the gambles of life. What if I don’t want to throw the dice to see how long I can keep the grim reaper away? What if I want to decide the last thing, I see, feel, touch, taste and breathe? If I was never meant to decide, then why is it an option?
Listen, I don’t condone suicide but I understand the temptation. If you’ve ever been at the crossroads, I feel ya, I’ve been there. It fucking sucks. If you’ve lost someone to suicide, I’m sorry too. It’s a tough subject with a bunch of spiritual, professional and personal opinions. I’m not a psychologist but I’ve been in therapy for a good chunk of my life and I will say this: I know suicide is bad. I know I have friends and family who love and care for me. I know there are resources to take advantage of when I’m feeling down. Will I still think about suicide? Probably. Why? Because it’s an option. This is not to say I’m ready to take the leap. I plan on living my life to every extent but the reality is I might not think this way tomorrow, next month or in a couple of years. Who know what person I may become?
There is so much pressure on a suicide’s ghost on things they should’ve done: ask for help, go to therapy, etc…but at the same time, what the fuck are we doing? And by we, I’m talking about you, me and the 7 billion rest of us. How about we just start by being fucking nice? How about we stop competing with the best versions of ourselves on social media and realize it’s a photo album not a timeline and if someone wants to share a rough moment, how about we send hugs not likes? How about we stop stoning and crucifying people after they make viral mistakes? How about we stop seeing depression as an illness, disease or defect? How about, if I tell you I go to therapy, you don’t think you handle your emotions better than I do? Everyone gets fucking sad. It’s in our nature to be. Our lives depend on it. We all came into this world with our mouths stretched and voices curdling. The first two things on our agenda called life is, 1. Cry and 2. Breathe. Number one is essential because if we don’t, then that’s the end of our list.