For every actual suicide, there are many of what I call walking suicides. I know because I spent a lot of years walking around as one.
Walking suicides have made a commitment not to kill ourselves. We may come from a suicidal family and have experienced the damage suicide leaves behind, thus our commitment not to repeat it. But the world we see is narrow, full of people that reinforce our idea that no good exists, bleak and gray, full of obligations and demands we don’t want to fulfill, an exhausting, irritating, frustrating, stingy, closed off life without purpose or meaning. Numbing seems like a great idea under those circumstances.
The good news is, there’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Life really can be hopeful, joyful, beautiful, connected, creative, fulfilling, varied and interesting. And it can be that way even if you’ve gone through decades of living otherwise. I never thought it possible, but it most certainly is. Darkness still comes at times, but I’m at least carrying a good source of light with me now, and if I get too lost, there are friends to call who have even more candlepower. And that’s a beautiful thing.