Namo amitabha Buddhaya, y'all.
This here's a religious establishment. Act respectable.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Talk Thursday: No Topic? No Problem.

Well, kids, no Talk Thursday topic has appeared in my mailbox yet. Not sure why--maybe the topic-o-meter had a blowout and they had to send to Shanghai for parts - but I'd like to assure my nervous fans, both of you, that this is not a problem. I have never needed an excuse to blather on at great length. Besides, I already have a topic picked out, and I was gonna use it whether it fit in with the "official" topic or not. I'm kinda stubborn that way.

December the sixteenth is not a good day for me. In fact, it's pretty much the worst day of the year to be Jen. The only good thing about it is that when I wake up tomorrow morning it will be December seventeenth and things are bound to get better. Every year I try to forget what happened on December 16 and every year I manage to remember it anyway. Nine years ago, on December 16, 2001, someone I care very deeply about killed himself. And yours truly has really never been the same since.

Oh, sure. I'm familiar with the various platitudes. He wasn't in his right mind at the time. (Well, obviously.) He had some problem, maybe a mental illness, that we didn't know about. (Yes, he had a big problem that we didn't know about then, and probably also a mental illness, and a serious alcohol problem, besides.) There's nothing you can do to save somebody who truly wants to take himself out. (Who wants to save him? It's too late to save him. He's probably a fourth-
grader in Beijing by now. I just want to track him down and beat the stuffing out of him for putting everyone who loved him through all this crap. Too bad it doesn't work that way.) The Lord works in mysterious ways. (Don't even get me started on that one. The Lord had nothing to do with a .34 blood alcohol level, a belt and a handy ceiling pipe.) You need to let this go, Jen. (Uh, hello. Tried that. Been trying for about nine years now. Hasn't worked. Still upset. Thanks for the thought, though.)

And hey, I wasn't even a close friend or family member. Yeah, I cared deeply for the guy, but I was a fringe dweller in his life. I'll be kind and say he probably would have recognized me in a crowd, might have remembered my name without too much prompting. But if I'm still this upset after this long, imagine what his close friends went through. Imagine what his kids went through. Imagine what a thrill it must be for them, to remember Christmas as the time when their daddy

So here, at last, is the point I'm trying to make. If you, whoever you are, are thinking about suicide, if the notion has even crossed your mind lately, but especially if it has done more than cross your mind, please, please please please get some help. Don't rip a giant hole in the hearts of everyone who has ever loved you. Don't leave a hundred or more people to write maudlin blog posts at their favorite Middle Eastern restaurants on a busy Thursday night. Pick up the phone -- right now -- and call one of these numbers: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) (TTY: 1-800-799-4889). In the Dallas area, you can call (214) 330-7722. Okay? Okay. Thanks. Tell them Jen and Stuart sent you.

William Stuart Adamson Jr., April 11, 1959 - December 16, 2001


Cele said...

God don't get mad at me, but here goes. Jen, in everything there is a purpose, our job... find that purpose. How did you friend's life and passing change your life? Where did those actions lead you? And how can you make a difference?

You already have because your heart is opened to those in pain. You want to help a person, any person whose heart and soul is in such a dark place they imagine a world better without them in it. I can't imagine that dark a place, with your help and compassion maybe someone who knows just how dark that place is will want to crawl out towards the hands offering a lift up.

Sid was a little late in getting out his topic, so now I can't wait to see what you write... or me for that matter.

Jen said...

Don't you think two Talk Thursdays in one week would upset the balance of power in the universe?

Me too. I'll do it though.