I have been in the printing and publishing business since I was 18 years old. 25 years, that makes it; straight out of high school. Hence, I see a word, or an error, in my peripheral vision. Just today I *fanned* through a set of pages, and found the word "Ubiquitous" spelled "ubiquitouus" on a series of pages, and marked it on a set of proofs that I had nothing to do with. Because, it is what I do. Still, forgive my my errors here; as I forgive yours. I care not but your message, yes?
I tell you this only because, 5 years ago, as I was putting clothes away in my son's room, my eyes caught words, on an IM printout on his desk, that were not mine to read. I tried to respect his privacy. I tried not to read them.
But still. I looked to the left. And to the right. Anywhere, but AT the words: He'd considered IT. IT was not worth living. He'd thought about IT. His friend argued, scolded, and chided. Don't do IT.
I finally gave in, and I read that printout.
And I promptly went straight to bed.
An anvil on my chest, I could do nothing, but go DOWN. Down, down, down, maybe I should lie on the floor, maybe I should find a parking garage, I need to be as DOWN as I can get.
And I fell, immediately, into a deep unconscious sleep, for 30 minutes. Dead to the world. I could not process this. I had to leave this.
I then woke up, and waited for my son to get home, and I didn't waste a minute. "THIS was none of my business. YES, I violated your privacy, and I apologize. But it is better for you to resent me, or HATE me, even, than for me to live knowing, that I never talked to you about IT. I know, I know, that IT crossed your mind. IT has darkened my doors before.
Do you understand me?
If you do,
I can't imagine.
That I won't.
I talked to Brian yesterday. He'd returned my call, while I was out taking a walk. We discussed his cel phone bill. And then he told me that...
...at final formation, at the end of the day, it was announced, by a red-eyed sargeant, that one of his friends, in his company, had taken his life that day.
My son, still reeling. He'd just been to the mall, with this guy a week or so ago, with a group. His age, he was not sure. "What's up with you?" they'd asked him. He said "nothing."
My son, 20, and in the Army, and still, I want to shield him from this. After flipping through an EMT book that we typeset in my company, just yesterday afternoon, looking at gunshot wounds, and imagining what my kid might someday see. God, I hope not. And still I want to protect MY son. From...
...his father's best friend, after PTI (Police Training Institute); hit by a car, and pressured to get back to work. Chop chop! Broken back my ass!;
...a boy I had a crush on, when I was a kid. Steve Seipult;
...and another, that I still cannot bring myself to write about here.
And I know this hurts, for some of you to read.
This Suicide, that we cannot wrap our minds around.
We are left with grieving at every Death, in our life.
But at those who take their own, we are left with Grief. And Frustation. Dammit! WHY?! and Guilt! What should I have said? Should I have paid more attention? And Anger. Fuck YOU, you didn't care enough about me to stick around? You hurt me like this? And Logic. What were you thinking? How is this better?
And maybe, that anvil on my chest, 5 years ago, was nothing but drama. Teenage angst. A lovesick kid. A conflict with a friend.
I'd do it all.