It is maybe a philosophical debate: what is the purpose of life or the meaning of it? For about 5-6 months, my immediate answer would be: there is no meaning, that’s why I just want to die.
I cannot imagine what it must be like for patients who are diagnosed with terminal illnesses or are hospital bound for great lengths of time. I had my share of hospital beds but nothing like what you see on TV with all these tubes hanging from everywhere. Mainly I just had IV drips for throwing up too much. Yet, already I felt extremely frustrated and upset about my situation, especially given that I used to be a very active person, extremely outgoing and always – and I mean ALWAYS – busy with something to do or someone to meet. I loved buzzing around. It made me feel alive, and it was my zest for life that drove me everyday.
What was I so enthusiastic about? I honestly cannot recall. Looking back, it seems that everything I lived for and did was futile and fleeting. Very trivial as well. Dust in the wind as the lyrics go. And yet, I had so much energy then, and it all seemed so sensible just one year ago.
The situations didn’t change. I did. How did I change between last Autumn and now, almost exactly one year later? I’m still figuring out. But I digress.
Going back to being sick: I’d like to sometimes think that my depression was not really caused by stress from work and life, but simply because of the fact that I was physically ill and could not be active anymore. Forced to be at home everyday, unable to even watch TV or read a book, or go to the kitchen to pour myself a cup of water without blacking out or falling over, were already too much for me to tolerate. I always took care of myself and others, I was strong. It was hard for me to accept I needed taking care of this time round.
I lost all motivation for anything. I didn’t eat. I didn’t talk. I only slept – sometimes for 20 hours a day. Then I had insomnia. I was angry at myself for getting to this point. I thought it was my fault, and I was a burden to Timmie and my doctors and the company. I knew at the back of my mind that it would be all right in the end, and that logically there is light at the end of the tunnel as the analogy goes.
However, I was tired from being in the tunnel. I knew there was hope but I had no hope in it. I was very upset about everything, most about myself. I was in this state of constant negativity – put all the “negative” emotions in and bundle them then times 100 – that was me for some months. I became hopeless. I became even more despaired when I couldn’t lift myself out of that mental state, and I hated myself for my inability to do so.
After a while, I came to one conclusion: I might as well die.
When I was young and heard about people killing themselves, I’d almost snicker at their “weaknesses” for not being to handle whatever the difficulties in front of them. I saw it as a sign of admitting defeat. I thought they made a “wrong” choice committing suicide.
I dare not anymore. And I definitely do not think it’s “wrong” to end our own lives. Because, I tried to kill myself too. (Sometimes I still wish I had succeeded in doing so). Don’t judge. For those people depressed, dying is one way out, it’s their “lights at the end of the tunnel” but in a form that most people do not accept or agree with. I now understand, and can empathize that sense of desperation people who want to kill themselves feel. Even though I’m clinically out of depression and stopped taking drugs for it, I still flip flop between the high and lows. I wonder, what are we chasing after everyday? Why are we all working so hard? For what, a “better” life? Vanity. It’s all vanity.
This shocked many of my friends when I told them about it. They would never have guessed I would do something like that, given how they knew me and perceived me.
Well, what is the point of being alive? When I am dead I will not remember smelling the flowers anyways. Who knows what happens after death? Religious people tell you about life after death and eternity – has anyone you know come back from being dead to tell you about it so you know for sure? They say, store riches up in heaven for your eternal life, umm… are we living for a even further future then?
Nevertheless, assuming all that is true, then what is the difference between dying now and tomorrow, or next year? We will still have our “after life”, right? Moreover, if we must think about it philosophically and legally, if we have our “rights” to live, why can we not have the “rights” to die too?
So, then, tell me, why do I need to stay alive today? Perhaps if only to play jigsaw puzzles, write calligraphy…
I am not about to attempt suicide again soon. It hurts, especially being in hospital afterwards. My humble advice is, if you want to kill yourself, choose an effective way. If not, hang on one day more because maybe, tomorrow the sun will peep out from the clouds. If it doesn’t, there is the day after. What is the worst that can happen if you stay alive today? It’s really not so bad, is it?
Consider it an improvement that I am pondering the reasons to stay alive, instead of convincing myself about why I need to die….
And to whoever is reading this out there, and if you are thinking about dying, write to me; perhaps we can come up with reasons to stay alive together…