So I read this book in the last two days that utterly fascinates me. Or should I say, “udderly” fascinates me. It’s called Going Bovine by Libba Bray who MUST be one of the weirdest, coolest, wildest, most fun, most surreal people to hang out with ever. That or she was completely high the whole time she was writing. If you read it, you’ll know what I mean. I don’t even know where to begin to describe...a teen with mad cow disease who goes on this tripped out meaning-of-life quantum physics adventure. It’s bizarre to say the least, but strangely enthralling and striking at the same time. There’s a section towards the end between the main character and his love interest, “Hey Dulcie, was any of that real?” She finishes her dance and the wings come to rest. “Who’s to say what’s real or not? “Yeah, but - my barometer on reality, not so good since I started going crazy.” “Yeah, well, who but the mad would choose to keep on living?”
I love that. Who but the mad....amen, sister.
There were many times over the last few months that I wanted to write about suicide. Explore the topic. Expound. Challenge. But I refrained because I figured it would 1) freak too many people out, 2) there would be too much reassuring on my part that I couldn’t do sincerely and 3) too much risk someone would check me into the psych ward at a local hospital. No joke. But we are far enough past that now, thanks to Hilmen who he got sick and convinced me Brad needs me, and thanks to Rhodiola Rosea, the herb my holistic doctor put me on that by-god is working.
So let’s talk about it. Who actually said that suicide is, like, the worst thing you can do? Where is that in the bible? Or any other religious/spiritual text? (If you know, pass it on.) It’s like we’ve been ingrained as a culture to believe it’s so obvious it doesn’t need to be explained. But seriously. It’s your life. Free will and all. Not that free will doesn’t have consequences. But who says your soul is eternally doomed if you just want to go Home already? Who says that you’re condemned to Everlasting Hell for pushing the Stop button? What if...what if we’re greeted by a team of souls that have been aware of what’s going on down here and just give you a “Whew, welcome back, what a run” , a hug, a swat on the bottom or a reassuring slap on the back and a “Good try, good try.” as you make your way back into the ethereal dugout? A chance to regroup, figure out when and how it became too much and how you’d want to do it different next time. Or what if you just want to sign up to help some of the other poor schmucks still stuck down here to try and give them an easier time of it, once you’re caught your breath and regained your bearings? Where’s the sin in that? Volunteer for a charity cause. (Of course, wouldn’t hurt to do that while alive here either.) Let’s face it - we don’t know SQUAT about what happens to the soul of someone who commits suicide. We don’t really know squat about anything as far as God or why we’re here or what ‘soul‘ really is. Part of me can’t wait to return to that All-Knowing place (I hope there is one) and realize that what we think we know as truth, faith or even hypothesis is like 0.00000001% of the actual Truth. I think we’re in for a big laugh at our human selves.
Anyway, I kept saying I wanted a panel of those who’ve been successful at suicide so I could ask whether it was worth it, why or why not. Still do, actually. I think it would be a fascinating conversation. But you don’t get that. I also think that people who have never been suicidal absolutely cannot be judge nor jury of someone who is or someone who has done it. Can’t. I’ve heard a hundred times over the years how “selfish” suicide is. Really? Isn’t is selfish to want that suffering person to stay on the planet for you??? They’re hurting beyond imagination, and you want them to endure and breathe pain in and out so you don’t have to worry about their soul or feel lonely or sad? (That argument stopped Brad in his tracks, by the way.) Well, you can judge, free will and all, but until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.... There is such a thing as life being unbearable. There is such a thing as too much. There is such a thing, and when there is, love is the only light. Love, and wondering if suicide doesn’t make the pain stop anyway. If that’s true, you might as well keep taking your chances here.
But I for one wish all those that have committed suicide godspeed. May you have found some peace. Some answers. Rest. Healing. Perspective. Beauty. Compassion. Understanding. A Friggin’ Break. Renewal. And may you somehow use the experience to infuse those gifts into those here who continue to resonate with that level of pain. May you pay it forward. Amen.