In Mexican culture, death is viewed very much different then by Americans. This can sometimes freak people out and I hope you read the below legend and find it to be comforting. This blog isn’t about death it’s about humanity, the digital age, and friendships with mental illness.
How Mexican culture views death:
In our tradition, people die three deaths. This legend is retold by Victor Landa of website Latino.com, from San Antonio, TX
The first death, is when our bodies cease to function; when our hearts no longer beat of their own accord, when our gaze no longer has depth or weight, when space we occupy slowly loses its meaning.
The second death, comes when the body is lowered into the ground, returned to mother earth, out of sight.
The third death, the most definitive death, is when there is no one left alive to remember us.
To me this is beautiful, it means as long as I keep the memory of those alive then they will still be here with me, and as we pass stories along they will live on in those stories.
There's this word it’s called “ghosting” for those of you that don’t know what it is Insider.com gives an excellent definition.
“This is the OG modern dating term that refers to someone you're dating, seeing, talking to, etc. disappears without a trace. They don't break up with you, they just stop responding one day, leading you to assume they've broken up with you.
Although this is common among people online dating someone they don't know very well, it can happen to anyone. This apparently includes people you live with.”
When this happens the ultimate realization that the relationship you had with this person was all about them and they are probably a selfish person and you are better off without them.
Ummm… better off without them.. so easy to say right? But not so nice at the moment when your feels are wrapped around a person and deeply enmeshed especially if future plans were made.
My take on this:
I think it’s the ultimate betrayal of a friendship or relationship. The person hasn’t the guts to say you hurt them, they don’t like you or they are angry with you. This person doesn’t want to work things out, doesn’t want to make things better and doesn't have the emotional intelligence to say this isn't working and give a logical reason why. This person is emotionally underdeveloped. They are deciding you are dead, they are deciding they want nothing to do with you and are not taking your feelings into consideration, they are saying you don’t mean a thing to me and never did and I don’t have the time to tell you this.
So you are thinking by now, what the hell are you talking about?
Here is where it gets vulnerable. A very close friend of mine ghosted me and it hurt, on top of my family situation, my depression, anxiety, medical diagnosis, and a sleep study followed by a court case the next day, I found myself in my own self-made hell.
I kept telling people I felt that I had this thin layer of happy covering up this inner sadness that is so easily cracked and once this cracks it’s all going to come out, but I was ok I had this under control.
This feeling of wanting to stab myself with a knife in my arm to release the pain and get rid of it had been creeping in my head all week, if I could just release this pressure I would be ok. Maybe this act would kill me, and that would be ok too. Would it hurt? How bad?
I cannot stop these thoughts its part of my depression, I know this now. I was slowly cracking and as quickly as a joke and a faked smile fixed it for just a moment, another crack showed up and then another, and then I found myself jumping out of a car after an argument leaving everything and just taking my cell phone that was tucked into my back pocket.
I walked and walked and then I found myself at the edge of the river looking out at it, walking along the path I found a spot, a spot that someone like me could walk through, a path to the water that I could see with my mind it was calling to me “walk in the water everyone will be happy when you are gone” I am a burden, I am broken, I am a terrible person, I need to be out of this world so peoples lives can be easier, so I don’t hurt anymore people, if I am gone no one will notice they will just say ‘oh she was depressed’ there will be no letter any explanation there will be nothing because I am nothing even to one of my closest friends I am dead, I am not remembered, I am forgotten, I am not worthy of a memory I am already living my 3rd death I am dying backwards. I think of course I am because I am an idiot I can't do anything right not even die. The words my friend told me to echo in my mind “because you are really fucked up” I thought this was a joke I thought this was an exaggeration no it’s true it has to be, this is why I am here. This is why I was ghosted.
Then this damn lawn mower starts making noise and I think how annoying suburban noise is and how bothersome lawnmowers are and why do we need lawns anyways, if someone famous like Kim Kardashian put beautiful rocks in her landscape then maybe she would save the world from the hells of grass and noise pollution. I think I don’t want to die with this loud noises around, but then I guess when I am dead, I can't hear it. What if someone wants to visit this spot where I last stood … then they have to do be burdened by lawn mowers too, again a reminder that I make bad choices. Oh who would visit me anyways. What if I don’t die what if I jump in and I don’t die then I am just wet and cold and feeling stupid.
My mind is screaming someone please help me, I feel my phone in my back pocket and I am desperate I pull it out and send a text message I need help, and I walk a little further thinking this spot isn’t good anymore and maybe if I walk this feeling will stop. After a while I see a woman running by I turn my head so she cant see my tears or my face, I don’t want to be seen, I don’t want her to see my monster face. I feel so foolish and ashamed. I stand there staring at the water thinking some more and I am grasping for some sort of self-soothing thinking and I think when I was younger and I told my mom I wanted to die she said to me “what about all the things you would miss out on” and I think maybe this thought will pull me out of these bad feelings again and they don’t I just am reminded about how unwanted I have always been by my family of origin and what a burden I have been since birth a fact repeated to me over and over again my whole life and how much happier they are without me. I start to cry thinking I don’t know what to do. I am screaming in my head, what am I going to do? Someone help me. Get out of me bad thoughts, go away and I turn around to look back to see if the jogger is gone and there Timmy is walking towards me, my knees buckle my prayers were answered here he was walking towards me in pants that are far too big for him, and that's all I can focus on at the moment. He gives me a hug and then I tell him all the thoughts in my head and we talk it out I don’t remember much after that some crying and then me confessing my thoughts of suicide and then we left. Timmy found me because I had shared my location long ago with him when I went out of state, and we just never turned the function off.
I didn’t get it all out that day and later that night I lay in bed and start to think about all the things I would miss if I tried to kill myself tears pour down my face as I think about all these beautiful things I would miss.
The birth of my best friends baby, my nephews graduation and all the other nephews that follow, the birth of my new niece, the visit from my good friend and her husband from NY, traveling, making sure my cat GG get’s to the vet, then I hear a voice say “are you ok? I lie and say “I can’t sleep” I feel stupid and ashamed for having all these feelings and getting caught. Timmy laid down next to me and hugs me and says ‘it’s ok, let it out” and I cry. I think about my nephews future their weddings, kids, accomplishments I would not be there for them. I think of how my sister in law would have loved to live to see her son’s graduate high school and she isn't here to see that and how lucky I am to be alive and to see this and I fall asleep feeling ashamed of myself but also so very lucky to be alive.
Today is another day, I am alive, I feel better and calmer and ok but this doesn't mean I will tomorrow, but I am taking everything one step at a time. Slow motion, moment by moment and I hope that one day this monster will be gone, I live to fight another day. I am not taking this lightly this is the closest I've come to taking my own life, that sounds so weird to say and it sounds so dramatic, I am ashamed, it’s embarrassing but I remind myself all the time that sick people made me feel to be ashamed and that it’s ok to feel sadness.
I am writing this for others that may feel the same way that may be in the same position that I am in or similar position. I don’t want people to feel alone in this, it’s a terrible feeling. I always tell people how amazing and beautiful and precious they are and I fail to do the same to myself. This isn’t the easiest thing I've written, but it’s real, and everything that happened cannot possibly be captured in words and shared. I'm very blessed to have the friends that I have, my adopted family and the people in my life that I do. I am alive today because of them. And Timmy he saved my life this weekend.
You have the ability to be the best version of you and it's my job to help you get there.