This post was been on my heart for years. I’ve been afraid to write this as I don’t want to upset those who have lost loved ones to suicide. If you’ve lost someone, I don’t recommend you read this. However, it’s time for me to be frank and share why no matter how hard my life gets, I won’t commit suicide. My hope is this post will make anyone who is thinking about this action change their minds.
On Jan. 10, 2018, a little over ten years after my miraculous healing, MCAS struck my body, causing ongoing bone crushing pain, extreme food and medicine allergies, and debilitating fatigue. Where I’d hiked 7 miles the week before, I no longer could walk or stand for more than five minutes. Even sitting in an ergonomic chair led to intense hip pain. Opiates and CBD don’t help, and pain injections further escalated the disease. In late 2021, I retired early as work stress made me increasingly ill.
This is not how I saw the rest of my life. Some days, my brain mires in such a fog that I can barely function. Every day I lie on the couch and stare at the same four walls with my hips propped up with pillows (the only position that doesn’t cause more pain). Day after freaking day.
MCAS also can cause an imbalance in the brain’s chemicals, leading to depression. That combined with my daily pain and other debilitating symptoms, make the depression even stronger.
There is no cure for this disease.
I’ve been deep inside that black chasm—cliffs surrounding me and no way out. Even being a devout Christian, I had times where suicide seemed so attractive that the thought of eternal damnation afterward didn’t matter.
This is not a post on sin, however.
I had a dear family member kill himself.
Readers of “A Reluctant Spirit” may recall that I came close to committing suicide in the 1990s after years of chronic pain and illness. In short, my uncle, whom I loved so much and who had committed suicide when I was 16, appeared to me in spirit when I was on the edge and asked me not to make the same mistake he’d made.
And, I’m glad I didn’t end it all, because the years between that dark period and this latest onset of illness, have been wildly fulfilling.
The simple reason I have not taken my life.
No matter how badly my daily existence gets, I will not commit suicide for one reason: my dear family and friends. Now, don’t roll your eyes and say people will be better off without you. That is not true. Period.
I’ve been shown that when we die, we’re able to understand our relationships and our loved ones better than we could while we were alive. Here’s the horrible part: if we commit suicide, we will be very aware of our loved ones’ pain due to our sudden deaths.
Let me say this again: if we commit suicide to free ourselves of our physical, emotional and/or mental anguish—we only replace one pain (ours) with another (that of those close to us). We will witness the agony of those dearest to us for the rest of their earthly lives.
My grandparents wouldn’t speak of my uncle’s death. You could feel a gaping hole in their hearts. More than four decades later, my father still believes he should’ve been able to stop his brother from killing himself. Even I, a teenager at the time, thought I should’ve sensed what was going to happen and stop him.
I will not prematurely end my life to witness what my actions do to those most important to me.
If you are struggling and contemplating suicide, please reconsider and stay on this earthly plane.
Situations change. Medical advancements are made. And, miracles do happen. Love is powerful. God even more so.
Seek out ways to make life more bearable. For me, it is writing (when my mind permits), sitting in nature (when my body permits) and watching the wildlife in our yard. If counseling works for you, wonderful. If meds are available that can ease your situation, please take them.
There’s a reason we’re still alive.
In the 1990s, I never dreamt I’d write a book that would help so many on their spiritual journeys; that I’d experience ghosts in a haunted hotel; that I’d be healthy enough to travel to exotic locations once again; and well enough to return to the workforce.
You don’t know what the future holds. Please stick around and find out.
US National Suicide Hotline 800-273-8255
Crisis Services Canada 833-456-4566