Haunted

Of all the losses I’ve faced, my sister’s suicide is the most complicated.  It’s been my near-constant thought since the grief issues were sparked.  I’m haunted by the thought of how she died and what she experienced.  The singer Dido puts it best in her song ‘The Day Before the Day‘:

It wakes me every single night.  Thinking through the day.

Did you stop at any time?  Have doubts at any stage?

Or were you calm or were you numb?

Or happy just to get it done?

I’ve lived my life without regret

Until today.

I found my sister’s body on a rainy December afternoon all the way back in 2000.  The image is burnt in my mind, and I see it every bit as clear now as I did that day.  Sometimes I even see it in my waking hours.  The fact that she died alone bothers me tremendously.  I wonder if I could have done anything at all had I got there even a few minutes earlier.  Her body was still the smallest bit warm when I found her.

My therapist says if it hadn’t been that day it would have happened soon thereafter.  She says my sister had determined to end her life, and even if she had survived that day, she would have just followed through with her plan another time.  Still, I wish for even a few more minutes with her even though I know I’d just want more.  I want to talk to her now and ask if there was anything at all I or anyone could have done to help.

In my mind, I see a young girl slipping away with no one around to help.  I’d have done anything I could to save her, but at very least, I would like to have been there to help her through the transition.  Thinking that she went through that alone keeps me up at night.  She died alone.  I wonder if she was afraid or if she would have changed her mind if someone had come home in time.  I wonder if she felt pain or if she simply grew cold and sleepy.  I wonder if she felt the cuts or was shocked by the amount of blood.  I wonder if she wished for someone to be there with her, and I would give anything to have been able to comfort her, if nothing else.

Grief is a beast that eats away at a survivor’s very existence.  My life seems to have stopped that day, as well, and no amount of therapy has even touched the wound.  The circumstances surrounding her death are so horrific, and it set off a chain of events that completely shattered any stability my mother and I had established.  Twelve and a half years later, the loss still feels new, and the shock is every bit as strong.  I fight against accepting it, as if refusing to accept it means it never happened.  I go over the details of the days leading up to that one, looking for any sign at all that might have been missed.  My sister was the very centre of my universe; everything revolved around her.  Since her death, the universe has revolved around her absence.

—————————————————————————————————————————————–

Speeches won’t be made today.  Clocks will carry on.

Flowers won’t be left in parks.  Work will still be done.

People won’t be dressed in black.  Babies will be born.

No flags will fly, the sun will rise.

But we will know that you are gone.

You who loved to love, and believed we can never give enough.

**

It wakes me every single night.  Thinking through the day.

Did you stop at any time?  Have doubts at any stage?

Or were you calm or were you numb?

Or happy just to get it done?

I’ve lived my life without regret.

Until today.

And you who loved to love, and believed we can never give enough.

**

I didn’t get to say goodbye.  The day before the day.

I was trying to get to work on time.  That’s why I turned away.

And missed the most important thing you ever tried to say.

I’ve lived my life without regret.

Until today.

**

And you who loved to love, and believed we can never give enough.

And you who hoped that underneath, we all felt the same.

That was until

The day before the day.

                                             ~Dido, ‘The Day Before the Day’

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Haunted

  1. I am so very sorry for this loss and the wound it has left, which as you say no therapy has been able to touch.

    I don’t know if there’s anything else I can say except that I hear your pain and grief.

  2. I am hurting with you over your loss. Suicide assures us a complicated grief that scars us forever. I hope you get some peace. I have imagined that on my peaceful days that it is my son staying close to me, helping me to live. It is the devil who has tried to steal and destroy all I know. I must be firm and not allow it. I wish for you to conquer this as well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s