I know it makes people uncomfortable when I tell them that, makes them squirm and they become unable to look me in the eye. But it’s true, and that’s the problem with it… that’s why it makes people so disconcerted.
I’m not suicidal. Please, no one panic. This one has been run by my shrink and we’re all OK with my safety. I have no immediate plans to take my own life, nor any in the future. I can’t, even if I wanted to. It’s frustrating and feels patently unfair, but I don’t have that option. Not after I’ve seen what it leaves behind.
And, of course, I have children. My babies. Removing any emotional weight, removing the fact that leaving them would break my heart, looking at it from a purely objective point of view… they deserve better than that. They have already lost one parent, which means the odds are stacked against them. I’m certainly not going to contribute to that any further. I never planned for any of this, never even considered this eventuality… but parenting doesn’t come with an opt out close, a gimme button you can push when things get too tough. Tony and I used to say we were in our marriage for the long haul…. we never even needed to verbalise that thought when it came to our children.
But I still spend my time waiting to die. I know, that’s sinful and self absorbed, but allow me to show you this from my perspective, please- from where I stand, right now, with the rest of my life spreading out before me, long and hard and all by myself.
Pretend, for a moment, you are me, in the years Before the Purple. You’re smart and sometimes funny, but your self esteem is mostly non existent and the thought of anyone actually choosing to love you for their entire life seems not only far fetched but laughable.
Then, one blessed day, after twenty five years of feeling not good enough, not pretty enough, all different kinds of wrong, you find someone who loves you. You marry, you have babies…
And for the first time in your life you can really, truly say you are happy. Happy and content and often joyful, with no disclaimers or “if only”‘s, never really wishing for more.
And then the person you love leaves you, in the most violent, horrific way possible; and in doing so takes it all with them, everything they gave you– confidence, self esteem, belief in yourself.
And you’re alone again. Not really alone- you have two children who you adore, to keep you here, to remind you every day that you are physically needed, depended upon.
But there is no one you can cry to. No one who can help. It doesn’t matter how far you pull your socks up, how much you try and rebuild a life for yourself and your little ones. The person who made life a more wonderful place to be is gone.
And what are the chances of meeting another, when it took twenty five years to find the first one? Who else out there could put up with you, tolerate you and your mood swings, and still love you unconditionally?
Odds and probability say there is no one. Odds say you will be alone for a by, very long time.
As I said, I’m not suicidal. I lack the conviction and the detachment required, having seen the actuality of it. But I am not afraid of dieing. Why would I be, when he’s waiting for me, and every thing will be OK again?
The plane starts to dive, a truck comes head on, there’s a big dark shadow on an X-ray… And maybe I smile, and whisper “Thank God”. Because it will finally, finally be over.