Ruminations: Young Lady, I’m Not Done With You Yet!

To Mandi

I’ve met so many people of different languages and cultures. You know what? We are all one. Insulated In our smaller worlds, but united by spirit nonetheless. Religions blinds us to our unity. I wish I could have done more to see peace and understanding prevail. But I am weary of running from my darkness. My greatest sorrow is how I have failed my children. They blessed me with such joy. If you ever cared for me – even a little, then honor my memory by protecting them. Guide, guard, and bless the babies I leave behind. Forgive me – I tried so hard to survive heartbreak and depression.

You selfish fucking twat!!! What the fuck is wrong with you?! Get out of your fucking narcissistic brain, you stupid cunt, burn some nag champa and make yourself some goddamn chamomile tea. Then put your three children somewhere safe with kind people, and go lead a life that is REALLY fucking hard and come back and let us know if you still want to fucking kill yourself and scar your children, friends, family and self for life!

We just received a message from Amanda’s sister. She has taken her life. I’m sorry to have to share this terrible news with you all on Facebook. Her children are with their grandparents.

Was it a cry for help? Was it to gain attention? Was it to really end her life? Was she hoping someone would come to her rescue, take over this heavy burden, strip away her pain, give her a break, even just a little one?

Tears are mixed with rage today. I want to shake some sense into her, smack her a little and hold her in my arms until both our tears run dry. Amanda wrote me. But I didn’t check my messages until the following day. She told me how disappointed she was in her husband. How much she had done for him. She didn’t mention how he’d left his entire world behind in England to be with her and her three children, ripped away from a beloved career to lose his pride, to deal with her constant state of depression and to be the new father figure of her three children far away from city life in Texas Hill Country. Yes, he made the choice. But she also made the choice to marry him even after she’d done things he definitely wouldn’t have approved of, just before they were married, choosing to tell him some of it, but not all. She was annoyed by the small-minded fanatical Christian/Republican bent of her parents. They were clueless. She once told me she’d never wanted to have children, yet she had them anyway. Because that was what she was supposed to do, she thought. And she made the most of what life handed her. Her favorite saying was “everything will be ok.” In her message, she said she wanted to come visit, to get some healing time. But I was drained. It was the holidays. I wouldn’t even be home. I needed some healing time of my own. I asked her to come the following week. She replied,

“I’ll be ok. Happy New Year.”

What does that even mean??!! I called her. I messaged her back. Nothing. About five hours later, she was gone. And instead of understanding, instead of hearing her urgent call, I became annoyed.

She sought attention. She was beautiful, but wanted more reassurance, always. Selfie after posted selfie. Several prior suicide attempts. Always the victim, yet genius in putting herself into uncomfortable situations. The world was too much for her, and there was never enough attention. So she cried and she cried until she cried no more. But how were we to know that? I was a six-hour drive away. What about those closest to her? If she’d already attempted it, couldn’t they have seen the warning signs? She was at her parents’ house, for Christ’s sake. Were they so blind to her distress? We all were, I guess. But you can only carry someone else’s pain for so long until you must hand it back to them, trusting that, with some coaching, will know what to do with it.

We were introduced years ago, I can’t remember exactly how many, by a mutual friend. We had a kindred love/obsession with France. She’d recently received her French citizenship, thanks to her attractive, yet abusive French ex-husband. She had what she wanted – beautiful children, a new handsome husband, French citizenship, a good job, attention. But I guess it wasn’t enough. What would have been? I read somewhere that suicide stems from a mental disorder. Did she have one? She must have. Do the rest of us have one for not paying more attention? For not getting it?

I’m furious. I’m angry that she couldn’t have waited one more fucking week to come visit me. I’m pissed that I don’t have more energy to welcome guest after guest, holiday after holiday, and responsibility after responsibility. I feel weak knowing how often she’d called out to me lately, and I wasn’t there for her. I wanted to have a good visit with her, but I didn’t want to hear her whine about her life. Mine is heavy enough. We’re all dealing with our own shit, our own paths verging on the edge of the abyss. It’s hard for so many of us to remain in this so-called state of reality, when most of us really just want to escape, somehow. And we all senselessly feel a little sorry for ourselves, of course, when we are so incredibly spoiled. But still, I wasn’t there when she needed me. I’m a shithole of a friend.

She was an ESL teacher. She loved to travel, all things French and the mystical life.

She was ridiculously beautiful with bright eyes and long, flowing hair. Barbie-esque. And she spoke with a light, wispy, almost Disney-character voice. Her ex was French-Algerian, broken, angry, abusive. His brother had committed suicide a few years before. Now will he have full custody of the children? Will he take them back to France? Her new husband is British. I should know him better. I should have gone to visit her much more often. I should have had her come here to visit. I should have been at her wedding. But I didn’t really approve. I just wanted them to be honest with each other, with themselves. But again, her reply was that it would work itself out. I asked her several times to come visit, but she could never get away. And when she finally wanted to, well, I was tired. I should have found the energy. How did I not know?

She was … no, I want to say, “She is” because this can’t be true. You stupid stupid girl. Don’t you know how much you are loved? Don’t you know how much you are appreciated? What does it fucking take to make you get that?!

You just have to come back. This is just silly. It’s not funny. Stop messing around. We need to make more of those dark chocolate-orange tartelettes that you love so much. We can drink wine and speak French. Hell, let’s just go to France on a little vacation! Life isn’t just what’s weighing you down in that pretty head of yours. Life is much bigger, much grander than that. Come back; teach me how to recreate those beautiful essential oils you make. Let’s go for a walk in the woods. I promise not to whine about snakes. You’re so brave. We need you. Your children need you. Your husband needs you. Your family needs you. And not only that, but we WANT you here. What is it that YOU need? What will make it all ok? You told me you’d be ok. You lied. You told me Happy New Year. Was that just some kind of cruel fucking joke?! That really is a horrible way to leave the conversation.

There aren’t enough walls in my apartment to punch. Sure, I could have told you I was praying for you. I could have told you to believe in Christ. I could have told you that killing yourself was a sin. But that’s what neither you nor I believe. I just want to tell you that you’re a fucking twat for killing yourself. And that I love you. And that I miss you. And that you’re very mean. And that I’m sorry for not being there. And that your whining annoyed me. And that I wish I wasn’t such a selfish bitch, and could have known what to do. And that life will not be the same without you. And I really mean that. And you should come back. Please.

Amanda's Visit_1
Mandi & Me – March, 2015

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Sam Beadel says:

    You filled in some of the gaps. We barely communicated recently. I’d never gone down there. And she rarely came up here and never stayed with me when she did. I think we both let go of each other a long time ago. But even I still wonder if there is anything I could have done. Be sad – devastated even. Be angry. Just be kind to yourself. We’re all trying to find our own path. If she couldn’t remember that you loved her – that we all did – she knows now. Hugs and love to you, Ms. Price.


    1. Thank you for your comment, Sam. It’s still hard to fathom. It’s definitely a wake-up call. And yes, exactly, we’re all trying to find our own path, and all have our own darkness to come to terms with. And it’s amazing how many of us kill ourselves in other ways without really realizing it. I am determined to live even more now for myself and my friends and family and because that’s what I’m here to do. Hugs and love to you, Ms. Beadel. Let me know if you’re ever down south. And if I get back up to the PacNW, I’ll send you word. Would love to see you. xo


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