Is it OK to wish for your own death?
He asked himself while watching his family. While standing in front of the window. They laughed, while attacking each other with snowballs. Karla screamed out with joy. Daniel and their dog Nele, rolled around in the white powder. All of it accompanied by the angelic laughter of his wife. She was trying very hard to take photos of the gang. Her smartphone already landed more than four times in the snow for that reason.
As if Anna had heard his thoughts, she turned to him. „Come out, you workaholic.“ He smiled gently. Shook his head. Pointing to the flipped up laptop in front of him. He wasn’t really working at all. He was too sad, too big were the dark clouds in his head to have fun with his family. He loved and hated these dark moments. He simply couldn’t get rid of them.
Did he ever think about committing suicide? Of course!
Would he also take the step? No way! That at least, he was hoping.
Every day he asked himself the same question: Was it okay to go to sleep next to his beautiful wife and just not want to wake up ever again?
He loved them all, with all his heart. They achieved everything in their life so far, ups and downs. Human existence. A good one.
The reason for his thoughts were not reasonable. He knew for a long time that he was sick. These black clouds came all of a sudden. Would they grow larger? Even capture the life of his dearest ones, too?
Suddenly it was dark around him. He could almost see dark shadows crawling up the wall, even at moments when he was the happiest.
For a long time he managed to stop the thought with slowing the train down in his mind. He then imagined himself in a crowded train, pulling the emergency break. The red thing at the door. Then the train came to a stop with a loud tearing on the tracks followed by loud screams of the passengers. He took a deep breath.
At some point this performance no longer worked. The shadows became more aggressive, even greedy. Every attack ended at some time and he was convinced that no one but Anna noticed anything. He played his part well, as it seemed but in front of his wife, he could not hide it. It was a part of the dynamic in their relationship that they shared everything. Never forced, it was just this natural cycle between them. From the very first moment on.
He closed the laptop obviously playful and spread his arms out towards his wife, who was standing in front of the door of the terrace, making silly faces. With shaky knees he went to the door, opened it and hugged her. She was cold from the snow, pushing her cold hands under his shirt.
He gasped, but then he laughed.
„I have to talk to you, my darling.“ He said, giving her a kiss on her lips..
Anna did not smile, she looked down. „Yes, baby, you have to, I know.“
The evening ended and when the children were in bed Anna and Leonard were sitting on the sofa. She had put both hands in his and looked at him expectantly.
„Anna, my darling, I do not know how to start.“
„Let me start, Leo, let me do it for you, baby.“ she said quietly.
„I’ve noticed something is different. Not only recently. At first, I feared you would not love me anymore. „Leonard’s eyes filled with tears as she spoke. „I could never …“ He started. „Leo, I know, my darling, I know.“
„The darkness that surrounds you, I can feel it. I see it in your eyes, almost every day. On the days without it, it’s the fear of it I can see. “
„Why have you never said anything, Anna?“ He returned uncertainly.
„I wanted you to be ready. Ready to talk about it. I wished so much that it would be soon, because I was aware that something is torturing you. It makes you angry and you always ask yourself why you are so unhappy when you are so truly happy.”
Leo did not know what to say. Yes, she had captured all his fears and feelings without him ever having to talk about them. He grabbed her hand, pulled it to his chest. Onto his heart. She smiled her charming smile, this enchanting yet caring smile. He was happy, she completed him with each of her quiet breaths, just with her existence.
No enlightenment came this day. No sudden solution, that happy ending out of pure love. The clouds came again, again and again. They grew bigger. Then they became smaller again. They completely disappeared for a while, only to strike back even harder but the guilt was no longer there. He knew that she knew that he was the lucky unhappy guy. Their love and their life, the lives of their children, made him happy. Despite the dark clouds.
The answer to the question he asked himself on a daily basis, is:
Yes, it’s OK to think of your own death but don’t waste a wish, no never! Not because all wishes may come true, but because they are too precious. Too precious to be wasted on that.
The darkness is still there unless you try to escape it by closing your eyes in front of it, it captures you either way. These moments should be honored, but also those in which we want our life. When we want more.
Although we cannot always love it, we can love the people in it and let them love us, if we let them. Including those dark clouds and all the bright moments. There’s no place for guilt in this issue, not at any time. It’s not you, it’s the clouds and this doesn’t mean, that you ever stop fighting.
Picture by: B. Sauter