I don’t want to pressure anyone to raise their hand, but I want everyone to think about if they know someone who has tried to commit or has committed suicide. If you still think this is what happens to other people, in movies, to the neighbours and you don’t know anyone, now you do. It’s a pleasure to meet you.
It was in early summer of 2015, and things were not right. My grandfather had died two months ago and I still pushed the thought of it away. It had been my first funeral. People had laughed in the end, not being able to bear the sadness. I was confused about that at the time.
My sister was about to leave for a year abroad, or had she already left, I don’t really recall. I still have some memory loss from the past 6 years, some images are like splinters of glass that you find three months after breaking a cup in your kitchen. Putting things into a chronological order without help is hard sometimes. I do recall being sad about her leaving, which is the important thing here.
I don’t recall what I had been doing at this time. I was in college, I must have been moderately successful, what I do remember is the day I decided to visit my grandfather’s grave.
Let me set the scene: My mother and her then-boyfriend are fighting. They have been arguing the whole day, as they do most days. The dog is lying around somewhere in the house. The atmosphere is meandering between “deadly silence” and “heated arguments about nothing”.
I am dressing up, but I don’t know why. Red lipstick is involved and a leather jacket, it isn’t particularly warm, or maybe I have just not been eating right again and I am always this cold.
On my way to the train station, I somehow stop thinking. Sitting down on the bench at the platform, I am waiting for the train that takes me to my home, the real home, not the pretend one. Where he is buried. You didn’t say goodbye, remember? It doesn’t feel like a thought that I have invented, but it’s there somehow.
Looking back on this day, I am almost amused at how little I thought about the physics of things. If I had jumped or tripped or something, the train wouldn’t have been fast enough. I wouldn’t have managed to end it, I could have been hurt really badly, but I wouldn’t have managed to go all the way from the point where I was standing. The train would have slowed down tremendously already.
There is nothing amusing about deciding to kill yourself. Or should I say about not deciding.
Still thinking nothing, I let the train pass. And the next one. My head is cloudy. I start crying silently, but I am not crying because of any particular reason. I am not sad. At least not actively.
I return home, as if my body has decided for me that waiting in this catatonic state is as pointless as living. My mother and her then-boyfriend have not noticed that I have been gone, which is something that occurred to me a lot later than that day. At this time, I just go back into my room to observe the white walls some more.