Memento Mori

When I was taking courses for my DEC in Special Ed (Adult Ed night classes downtown), we learned about suicide.  Which methods each gender tried, each age group tried. And the repercussions.  Many people that jumped – if they survived, they essentially made themselves dependent disabled people for life.  We heard about metro drivers, and how devastating it is to hit a person. Suicide by cop. There are so many many repercussions.

©2000 Marion Pennell

©2000 Marion Pennell

I used to stand back to the wall, not up against the tracks, in times of trouble.  The urge to jump can be quite powerful when you are in that place.

The worst time of my life, with foolproof method planned, I realized my older brother would be the one to find me, and I called my mom and stopped my plan.

Taking other people out with you purposefully – my pain was never like that.  As much as the more general ‘others’ of this world could never understand my despair, I can never understand the depth of selfishness married to desperation that produces the murder-suicide.

Memento Mori

Memento Mori

When I was well, I worked out every angle, pro and con, for and against suicide.  When I approached it legally, intellectually, morally, ethically, etc… it always came down to repercussions.  And the answer was always: live.  And I told myself that should I ever be in that place again, I needn’t go through the exercise of the argument.

The knowledge that I’ve argued it out with myself – To be or not to be – and I know my answer, that I’ve already suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, and I can survive the heartache and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to – now gives me peace.

Vanitas

Vanitas

The Germanwings copilot’s act was incomprehensible.  Not because it was “suicide” (it was mass murder), but because safety for passengers, crew, and craft must have been so drummed into his head that he did know the repercussions, at least on some level, no matter what else was going on in his head.

Kill yourself if you must, but find a way to leave the rest of us out of it.

©2006 Marion Pennell

©2006 Marion Pennell

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