Before this unexpected tragedy, I always felt that suicide was a selfish act, that it was a cowardice way out, and that it somehow denoted a weak character on the behalf of the person who killed themselves.
But my father was none of these. He was no coward, his character was moral and upright, and he wasn’t selfish (although he was extremely introverted). He simply lived his life without ever having the urge to ever make anything about him. He was content to stay out of other people’s hair, and all he desired was that they’d do the same and respect his privacy.
When I heard of my father’s suicide, all the stereotypes of what suicide is and means fell to the wayside. In fact, I can’t even allow myself to be angry, because there is nothing to be angry about. I only feel pity for my father’s situation, I feel regret for not knowing before hand how dire things had gotten for him (as he hid it so well from everyone), and I can’t help but feel in a perpetual state of confusion. Simply put, my father wasn’t the type of person who’d ever commit suicide. But he did.
The hardest part isn’t coming to terms with the loss of my father. People die. That, believe it or not, is the easy part. The hard part is feeling like something was taken away from me prematurely, and that I somehow let my father down (even though I know it wasn’t my fault). In the back of my mind is the nagging feeling that, somehow, I should have known. Instead, I got blindsided. We all did.
And that just makes me sad. Dealing with the death is the easy part, but it’s the broken heart that hurts the worst. It’s picking up the pieces, like shards of broken glass, that is the more difficult. Now that I hold the broken pieces in cupped hands… and gaze numbly out at the world from behind swollen watery eyes… I wonder what to do with them.
Where did my father go?