suicide and … what? do words make sense here?

i’m sitting here checking my email after a lovely weekend away. my daughter is doing the dishes to hedley’s “for the nights i can’t remember”. my husband is exercising on the Wii.

and i just opened an email from an artists’ email list i belong to. norm tucker, a fellow vancouver artist and writer, committed suicide some time this month, it says.

how do these two coexist? the contentment of a happy family and the tragic end of a life, full of suffering for everyone.

i don’t get it. i guess there is nothing to get.

but there are things i can do. i can send good thoughts to norm’s loved ones. i can extend my hand to others who are deeply unhappy. i can talk about it.

every single person i’ve talked to who had seriously contemplated or attempted suicide has talked of the importance of bringing it out in the open, one way or another. each one of them saw suicide as the only way to end pain.

there is never, never, ever just one way to do anything. but that’s easy to say for me right now, sitting here in my happy living room, not tucked in the corner with depression, not bouncing off the walls with mania. still, i can gently hold this (temporary) sanity for others, hold it for them while they plumb the depths of despair, hold this sanity like a rope. i can listen to whatever words they manage to throw my way.

do these words make any sense? i don’t know. i just wanted to bring something, however small and nonsensical, to this life that was norm tucker.

here is an excerpt from his last blog post. it is called the last dream and more questions

but do we give up?
do we abandon our dreams and hopes?
do we embrace ego and desire?
or does the infinite solace
of what might be, what could be, or should be
motivate us to trudge beyond everyday oblivion?

buried within the big picture is the little picture,
us – you and me – persons, people, humans,
do we count?
can we count?
what can we do in our own small way
to move us into the dream – the living dream?

4 thoughts on “suicide and … what? do words make sense here?

  1. Polly Faminow

    It was very thoughtful of you to put Norm’s poem in your blog. He was a very private person with very little ego, so I’m sure he wouldn’t want a fuss to be made over him. On the other hand, he would appreciate the dialogue that has come out of this situation, and of course all of the caring. I make these comments, not because I knew him really well, but because I did get the impression that he loved the arts, artists, and offering his support to them. And also from the little time that I actually spent with him, I glimpsed a sense of his personality and who he was. There is a book called “To Thine Own Self Be True,”by Lewis M. Andrews. The author writes that in societies where people make amends in tangible ways (not simply saying sorry, but demonstrating an apology with some kind of action, or taking the time to resolve conflict), there is less suicide. I’m not sure this idea is relevant to Norm, but may be worth considering.

  2. isabella mori

    thank you so much for your words, polly. they make me think in a number of ways. it’s interesting that you say that he wouldn’t want to have a fuss made over him. of course i don’t know exactly what that meant for norm but my first reaction when i read that was, “but if someone would have made a ‘fuss’ over him, maybe he would still be alive!” i remember a few years back when a friend of mine was very close to suicide, and a big (and not entirely pleasant) fuss was made over him, and it did help him turn around.

    and i have to get that book! it resonates with me on so many levels. “to thine self be true” is a dictum very dear to my heart, as is restorative justice.

    hope to meet you in person soon!
    .-= isabella mori (@moritherapy)´s last blog ..smoke on a wordless wednesday =-.

  3. ClinicallyClueless

    I have attempted and seriously thought about suicide and do not remember when I did not have that thought even as a toddler.

    When I am fragmenting into “I’m bad,” “I need to die,” and more. I have coping skills, but after a point and don’t care anymore. However, I know that I really do as I call my therapist. Sometimes, I have let him know that hospitalization is necessary.

    Mine has to do with the ultimate self hatred, feeling like I don’t exist to anyone, that I really don’t matter and wanting to end pain.
    .-= ClinicallyClueless´s last blog ..Drama and Depression =-.

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