I remember it clearly, even though memory vacates too often lately. Name and venue unimportant. It really is. The call came, “Mark, please get here as soon as you can.”
Nothing more, but a lot less. She was in chalk-white shock. Took me in the garage. Her spouse sat in the passenger front seat. Had on his seat belt. I looked twice, didn’t really need to. He was dead. By his own decision.
Another time, again no place or name necessary. All I could see was his wrist watch. The sidewalk had smashed it but was still on his wrist. He felt nothing. Death, jumping from a high building, does that.
No, I won’t go there, let alone stay there. As far as I know I’ve only kept one person from that decision and it was completely accidental. The call was to tell me farewell. I hardly heard her because of some personal circumstance. Actually hung up without any good-bye. Leaned later my abruptness made her so mad—make that furious—she decided to not end her life. I was lucky, maybe the only time that my self-focus, which is not as rare as I’d wish over the decades, had benefit and purpose.
I know, then I don’t. I can only tell you that two deaths continue to haunt me. The deaths of Robin William and Whitney Houston. I so valued each of them. I loved the energy and whacky creativity of Williams and Houston’s voice…oh, my, as helpful to me as Celine Dion. What I know when I think of people for whom life matters to me, Williams and Houston are right there.
Why all this? Because I just read an article that has impacted me. Because I know people now who find living not the best option. Perhaps you do, too.
This article says that suicide isn’t always because of failing mental health, unstoppable fatal disease [I do know a valued friend who battled ALS and had to stop his suffering. The building was high enough.] and other terminating realities. The article says something very profound. I don’t want to block what this lady writes. I don’t know her. That matters not. What she says brings life and God, from anyone’s consideration, into a very clear focus. I link it with an invitation. It’s helped me this morning. And I trust unto God it will help you. No matter how strong or weak your pulse. God Bless each of us…no matter what.