A boy I grew up with in my neighborhood, was good friends with, even had a crush on for a time...committed suicide yesterday. I have not seen this boy since high school (which is why I suppose I continue to think of him as a "boy" even though realistically he was a 39 year old man when he died) so I don't know where life took him after we all graduated and moved on. Because my parents and his still live in that same neighborhood I have learned that besides a divorce under his belt, he had been struggling with other life challenges. But suicide? I know that it is, unfortunately, not uncommon. But I have a really hard time wrapping my brain around it. How completely and utterly devastated and worthless one must feel to think that killing yourself is the only option. What was going through his mind when he stepped in front of that train early yesterday morning?
This comes at the tail end of a week that was already a bit of an emotional roller coaster. Tuesday night found me sitting in my car until the wee hours of the night talking with a dear friend about the state of her marriage and debating whether she should seek a divorce. This couple has been married for 18 years...I introduced them and served as maid of honor at their wedding. And without going into details that are not really mine to share, I'll just say that both Bryan and myself have been extremely distraught and shed many tears of grief over the whole situation. It hurts, literally hurts physically, when I think about it.
But then Bryan and I were rocked again (and extremely saddened) Thursday to hear the news that some other friends of ours have decided to divorce. She worked for Bryan for many years and, more than just a stellar part of the team, she and her husband both became valuable friends. I remember well with fond memories being with them when they were sealed in the temple. I don't know the why's and how's of what went wrong. And realistically, I don't need to know. I can pray for them with or without details.
So this morning my emotions were raw as I told Bryan about my friend who committed suicide. Why is life so hard sometimes? I found myself unexpectedly in tears as I shared my immense gratitude for our relationship and the love we share. We have had our fair share of fairly serious trials. Life has been very hard on us at times. As it is for everyone, really. Because after all, this life is meant to be a test, isn't it? However, I firmly believe that "...men are that they might have joy" (2 Nephi: 2:25) and that we have agency. Which means that despite the crap that life throws at us at times (because of poor decisions or no) we have the choice and the ability to endure, overcome and be happy.
How I hope and pray that despite the truly awful things my friends are going through, they will eventually find comfort, peace and happiness again. How I wish that my friend who committed suicide had. And how thankful I am that Bryan and I are on this life journey together!