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Socially Accepted Suicide

The last time I saw her, she was doing well. She looked fifteen years younger, no whiskey bloat or bulbous nose. Her eyes were clear, her wit as entertaining as a stage presence. Less than three years later she was dead.

The reasons for her over-indulgent drinking are unclear. She came from an upper middle socioeconomic status and had a husband and children who all adored her. She was attractive enough, especially once she lost that ugly discolorization and alcohol induced swelling, once her blood was no longer being diluted by distilled spirits and had a chance to circulate some oxygen.

She was bright and supported and imaginative. As a friend, she was caring and fun and non-threatening and un-intimidating. I adored her. I miss her.

I’ll admit that there are many things in life that I don’t even begin to understand. The whys are questions with no answers, and as I’ve aged, I’ve begun to expect fewer answers and ask why less frequently. Whys don’t matter, I hear my gestalt therapy mentor in my head. He said it often to me as I pondered the experience of life. Whys don’t matter, however, whys cause me to think, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Why some people choose to drink themselves into the grave is one of those whys I ask often. Don’t get me wrong; I am a social drinker on occasion, and as a rule, do not judge the habits and choices of others. All of life is a choice. We make a choice to open our eyes each morning, and to close them every night, and we make all of the choices in-between. I advocate choice, conscious choices as a means of attaining personal goals and fulfillment, and even enlightenment. I advocate mindful choosing of every action and response in one’s life. After all, our individual gift of this life is to be able to choose how we spend (or squander) it. Our choices are our freedom. Despite the happenings around us, regardless of our culture, we are always free to choose how we respond to any given situation.

What was my friend running from, trying to mask, to deaden? Still I have no clues. She had to be trying to cure, to self-medicate the hole, whatever that hole was. Filling an empty emotion with booze, drugs, food, or any over-indulgence is not effective. Meditation, spiritual study, taking the journey within is most effective.

I watch as some folks smoke, eat fast un-nourishing foods, drink chemicals and concoctions that will clean the tar off a toilet, and then complain about how they feel. I notice others fill the serenity with constant noise from televisions, chatter, and blaring radios. I witness sadness and sorrow and despair and I celebrate when I find the health conscious partaking mindfully and avoiding bad news and negativity. I note that for better or worse, choices most often become habits.

Because I have known folks who checked out permanently, prematurely, I have pondered suicide and all causes of death. It is my understanding that we are either making choices to support our choice to live, or we are making decisions to commit suicide slowly thru neglect and abuse of our body, mind, and soul. Whether via a gun to the head, a six-pack per night, a needle in the arm, a fag between the lips, a double dripping cheeseburger to the heart, there are multiple means of socially acceptable suicide.

Know what you are taking in whether via media, meals, or friendships. With at least as much tender care as you would administer to a houseplant, be mindful of what’s in the environment and in the fertilizer of your life. Are you cared for, or are you wilting? Are you being loved and nurtured and receiving the dose of sunshine and sweet words that nurture your wholeness? Is your freedom as choice being affirmed? Can you release any feelings of being mvictimized and immediately replace those emotions with feelings of self-acceptance and gestalt wholeness?

Today I will affirm my wellness, body, mind, and spirit, as I seek to be the most whole and balanced (gestalt) as I possibly can be. Consciously, in this present moment, I AM conscious of how my choices affect the whole sum which is me.

As a final thought, I stumbled onto a great book written by a survivor of suicide. It’s a sort of memoir meets new age meets self-help genre, and it’s fascinating. The book is reported to have healing properties, not only for survivors, but also for anyone questioning common dogma, fascinated with the question of life after death, and for anyone seeking answers to some of life’s mysteries. It is a ‘can’t put down page turner’ that left me with a curiosity about angels, guides, and the possibilities of current day miracles. I’ve even posted a link on my pages to the publisher for your convenience, or just copy and paste this link into your browser:


Be sure and leave me a comment if you read this!

~As always, from Paris with love & light.