[This is a guest post from my wife. You can find her other posts at ClaudiaYoga.com]
It was my first day of college and I was walking excitedly into my life ahead without realising that at that moment my mother was hitting the ground after falling from her 7th floor bedroom, the room in which she had slept for the past 16 years. My father was not there as they had separated about a year before that dreadfull March 31st. It was their wedding anniversary day.
After finishing my first university class I went to work at Hertz Rent-a-Car, where I was a sales representative and was surprised, at arround 11:00 AM, to see my father and cousin come in together. What was that about? I wondered.
My father was plain and direct in his message: “Claudia tu mama murio” (Claudia your mother died). He did not give me any details and then asked my boss if he could make a phone call from his private office, which he gently agreed to. It seemed like nobody could say “no” to my father in the state of mind and body language he was in, doors just flew open on his way.
I started to cry immediatelly but not because of sadnes, it was more because I knew that crying is what happens when your mother dies, so I did. The reality is I was utterly, totally confused. I also had questions that were not getting any answers: How? What happened? I just saw her! She gave me a kiss goodbye, she was doing the laundry, and she had given me an umbrela. (Picture is from their wedding day)
Un umbrela on a sunny day… I should have known. Then again, I had just turned 18, I knew nothing.
My siblings (9 and 14 at the time) sustained injuries akin to having a hammer hit you on the head and cracking their skull open. I loved them so much and yet I did not know what to do. Moreover, the adults around us did not know what to do. Me? I felt as if a truck had just run me over three times, and it was a big truck.
Arriving at the apartment building with my dad and cousing it all looked as the set of a movie: there was an ambulance, a police car, and about 100 people who were half curious, half shocked.
I went straight to the ground floor apartment where she had fallen and asked the security guard in a demanding voice: “Let me in!”. “No” he said. Angry I returned: “I am her daughter, I want to see her!”. He softened his eyes, and with love in his heart said: “You do not want to see this”. I backed away and broke down completely. It was his compassion that made me hit the hard wall of reality, she did die, and it would be better if I did not see it.
The rest was a whole lot of confusions after confusions. We had to leave the apartment for a week as it was seized by the police, we wondered if there was a note. There wasn’t. Then seeing her at the wake where she seemed to have a peaceful and delicate smile on her face. Then the cementery and seeing how life went on, one administrative task after another. Then going back to work feeling the eyes of everyone around me on my neck, sensing the conversations that probably happened behind my back.
Life went on, but you should know: her death, like that, never healed. Never.
My father died last year, and slowly I find solace, I see the cycle of life, I see the range of his life, and I understand, I heal. But with suicide this is not the case, the hurt never heals, it does not go away. Time softens it, makes me remember less often, but the pain is still there, and I have a hunch it always will. So I live with it, one day at the time.
There is always that little voice somewhere inside of me that says: “Maybe if I did something different”. I know it was not my fault, my mind knows that, but my cells, my whole being, my emotional body, she does not quite get it. Perhaps many more Vipassanas will be needed to clear these samskaras (mind conditionings).
Why Suicide is not the Answer
If you ever think about committing suicide you must consider this, you must:
1.- Think about the ones around you, the ones that love you, (especially little ones) you will be hurting them much more than you can imagine, you will be breaking their skulls open as if with a hammer. That is no metaphore, it is exactly how it feels:
- There is help, I know you do not believe me but there IS. I know because I myself have been suicidal after this incident, many times, and found help.
- There is a line you can call 1-800-Suicide. Call it. There is also this, and this, and also the number: 1-800-273-TALK
- E-mail me
- Talk about it, let it out of your head.
2.- Karmically it is very expensive. Trunga Rinpoche had a friend who killed himself and at the wake he said to everyone: “Right around now, he realises he did not get away with anything”.
We are here for a reason, we need to be warriors and fulfil our life cycle, dying like that not only leaves us with a bad thought at the end (probably anger) which might determine our next life, but also, what about if we need to repeat everything to this point, to learn the lesson? better learn it this time!
3.-I know things can get difficult, but especially these days there is more help than ever: 12 step meetings, teraphy, friends, blogs, support groups, prayer, priests, rabbis, churches, co-workers, Human Resources departments, medication. Poeple do care. I Forgive my Mother, God bless her On a final note, even though the pain is still there, I do forgive my mother, I did a long time ago, these are the reasons why:
- Her death sent me straight into creating my very own bulshit detector, quickly. I have fine tuned it now, and I appreciate her help on that
- It exposed me to the negative energies of life earlier, yes I went into the dark side for a while, but I found yoga when that period passed
- It taughened me, granted there are better ways to strengthen a child, but this is what I got, and I had to deal with it, so be it.
- It made me more compassionate
- It taught me the importance of listening, and that when someone says “I want to die” we must believe them, and offer help, ESPECIALLY in the case of children!, especially in the case of anyone.
- I know, at a cellular level, that she and I had a sacred contract (as Caroline Myss would put it) whereby we would both come to this world together she as my mother, me as her daughter, and she would do this out of love, so I would go on a search to find and become what I am today, for which I am grateful.
- She took a much bigger karmic toll in helping me find my way than I did in being her daughter.
- She taught me that suicide hurts forever so this post would be written and hopefully whoever needs to hear it will hear it, and find help.
- She made me understand that thinking positive is the only way to go, to forget naysayers, and that this life needs to be appreciated, no matter what.
- I am here because of all the things that happened in my life, and she taught me perhaps the biggest lessons ever. She was a teacher, one with tough love you could say, but a teacher anyway.
I have had recurring dreams with her for years, at first I was in a city that looked like Buenos Aires and I searched for her, but could not find her phone number, or my aunts would just not give it to me.
Then one time I found the number and called and she agreed to see me. She did not talk much, but she did said that she was swimming a lot and taking car services. She loved to swim and so I know she is well and with God.
May this story inspire whoever may need it, to find help, to believe that there are options, and to heal.
So be it.
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