“I’m on a train and there’s no one at the helm                                   and there’s a demon in my brain that starts to overwhelm” – 3eb

I ordered your autopsy report the other day.  I can honestly say that’s something I never thought to be doing in this life…ordering the autopsy report of a friend.

I ordered it because your parents need to see it, they hope to find the “why” in that report, that it will bring them some measure of comfort about how this could happen.  I have no such faith.  I know that we will never really know why a bullet to the heart was your way out of whatever was consuming you.

I do know that before you left us, that moment before, that you weren’t thinking about what comes after.  I don’t think you could see past the demon, I think you were overwhelmed and in so much pain that you could only see that it needed to end.  I think that in your last moments of irrationality, brought on by extreme sleep deprivation that had lasted months, or maybe by the medications you were taking to help you sleep, you even thought that we would be better off without you, but I can’t know that.  There is so much that we will just never know.  It can make you crazy if you let it.

Not very long ago, a few months maybe, you told me that you thought you had been concentrating on the wrong things your whole life.  We talked about it, I thought that because you recognized it that meant you were making changes in your life.  Now I think that you didn’t believe you could change anything, that you probably thought it was too late.  Or you were too overwhelmed to think of changing, I think that every day was a struggle for you and we just didn’t realize how underwater you were.

I think about the conversations we had over the last few months before you died, and I have so much regret.  Realistically, I know that I was a good friend to you, I was always there when you needed to talk and I know that my optimism and encouragement was something that you valued.  But I think that this feeling of missing something, something so huge, will be with me always.  My rational mind knows there was probably nothing anyone could have done; but emotionally I can’t help the feelings of regret, “what if?”, “why didn’t we…?”.  They just are, like the fact of your death.  It just is.

We carry on, but we are forever changed.

  One thought on “Postmortem

  1. christie
    March 25, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    I feel for you. I almost drank myself to death two years ago next week. I know now, after a lot of therapy and rereading my journals from then, that I tried to commit suicide. I didn’t want to wake up anymore. I didn’t want to feel the pain that I thought was so overwhelming. I didn’t want to face what I needed to face in order to get better.

    Suicide is selfish, yes, but there is no way to know what was going on inside his head. He probably regrets what he did, now that he’s looking down on the devastation he caused. He was sick, and didn’t take the steps that only he could take to get well. The regrets you have will fade – you couldn’t have done more than you did. I know this for a fact, because the only thing that woke me up was being brought back from death in a hospital with a BAC of 34%. Nothing anyone said or did for me could have made anything better or stopped it from happening.

    I hope you and your son are doing alright. Much love.


  2. April 6, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    thinking about you….


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