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Time for the awakening...

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January 30, 2012


Wow... I met a wonderful woman online. I courted her the past 5 months. We are a bit distant from each other, but we made the best of it. Two weekends ago I helped her move into a new apartment. No "over-night guests" at the old place, so now, at least I had a couch to sleep on.
Not. She's dumping me. Yeah. She really is.
Which brings me to the subject of suicide - taking one'own life.
First let me make clear I have no licenses in psychology. I'm not a clinician of any kind. I simply have experience. An my good, old, trusty BA in English - makes me a legit writer, yeah. Power to Education.
I always thought Socrates was the first of ancient persons to take their own life. He drank a lethal brew of hemlock.
It turns out, he was sentenced to death by a jury in 399 BC, because his views were considered unconventional - yes, simple as that. He chose his form of death.
"Freedom of the soul from the body". Suicide.
I've had my fair share of exposures to suicides. There was an employee of mine, whose husband hung himself during X-mas. The owner of the facility we worked refused to give her time off to attend to his body and other matters. I was her manager, until the next day when i quit the job calling the owner an asshole, which he was. There went my resume listing "manager"...
During my time as a custodian at a community college in the 1970's I made two unforgettable acquaintance'. I was in my early 20's and both women were beautiful, very beautiful. One woman made me think of the French, Joan of Ark, short, dark hair, a face to love, and experiences... she was 26 when I met her.
The other woman was a model... in the sense she was beautiful, graceful, but by no means dumb. We had some very good discussions, but then one day she opened up about her body image. She hated herself. She felt the human body was wrong, not right, awkward. She decided she would rather be dead than living in her body. She did so, committed suicide. She was at most 22.
My French friend, she told me one day she was in the nursing program to learn how to properly kill herself. Age 27 she shot herself at the local general hospital, in the restroom.
There was my cousin's best friend, a beautiful woman I got to know well with 3 kiddos and a husband. We used to share "feelings" together. We had fun together. She killed herself and i adopted a kitten the day my cousin and I visited her husband after her death. The cat was my closest companion for the next 11 years, until he died... with him, she died forever, and I was devastated.
Fact is: My father made me promise not to kill myself. He could see I was capable of it from a young age. And so far, so good. But considering the reason's why some choose suicide and others don't... maybe it's the fact I was a 70's person, and going to a therapist was in style, along with self-help books and a lot of questions about "Who Am I", and "What Is My Purpose in Life?" We embraced the challenge. Many of us benefited from the unusual therapies. We took personal risks other generations didn't dare take. For many of us, the "baby-boomer" generation, the results were mixed, but overall positive. For others, not so good.
I'm an idealist, and always around the corner is a better life... some would call that hopeful, others would describe that as being a basic foundation of the American principal, the never ending "pursuit of happiness" that our culture encourages, or at least as a "Constitutional ideal". I'm finding that in reality, life is indeed difficult, and finding happiness is more and more elusive... The very nature of what got Socrates sentenced to death, for example, is still alive and well in 21st century America... the overt demand for conformity. Some people do better shedding the need to conform than others, or the ability to conform and find pleasure in that, however, even successful people have trouble feeling as one with society sometimes, and find they can't live with themselves. And it's sad. I don't believe it has to be that way. But again, I'm an idealist.
Feeling awkward about ourselves or our body... ? Granted, sometimes that is unavoidable, especially when we obsess about it, yet often, it is simply a difficult task as we become more keenly aware of our differences among others, our physical form, or the burdens we carry.
Seems the role of government in that respect would be more one of acceptance, and less frivolous regulations when it comes to what rights adults have in pursuit of their dreams. But alas, governments, religions, and group ideals don't often help, instead, they are designed to enforce a ideal of their own, a lock-step of sorts, and the result is a large segment of the population doesn't feel like they "fit in".
I'll conclude with a very touching, recent story of a SOAP Actor who recently took his own life. Nick Santino, unemployed, was "forced" to euthanize his dog Rocco, on Nick's 47th birthday. Nick got Rocco, a mixed pit-bull, from a shelter, lived in an apartment complex the originally allowed pets. They changed the rules, but "grand-fathered" pre-existing pets as okay to keep.
But for Nick that was at a price...
Santino couldn't live after that... and that's all it takes.
Hey, us human beings, we're a tough lot. But we've got feelings. Part of those feelings is where do we fit into humanity, our brethren?
I can tell you suicide is not the answer, but the solution is complicated. It requires standing back from the present and reassessing the future. With more than two solutions present at all times, one's third eye can often see a way out. I've witnessed it many times. Yet still, those who took their own lives, it's so sad, as it still seems so unnecessary, unjustified and unfair to us still living.

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