Since Raj’s tragic passing, Archana has been devastated enough to consider suicide. But this time, Raj asks her to promise to serve out her purpose without him.
“Yesterday when I got up, I stood in front of God’s photo and said, “It’s enough, and I’m tired. Please take me back to you!”
“Even while talking to a friend at another time, I said, “I have no intention of living. Every day, I wake up hoping it should be the last day. But somehow, death is not ready for me yet.”
“Well, last night, I had a dream where I was at the river bank where Raj tragically drowned. In my dream, I was talking to a friend about how the tragedy happened. Then, to my surprise, Raj came walking up in the sand and sat down next to me. I smiled at him and asked, “When is my turn? I want to be with you.” He took my hand in his and said, “Promise me that you’ll not commit suicide.”
“I don’t remember what happened after that, but it felt good to know that Raj was listening to my words. Still… it’s really tough to take so much pain in one life.”
Commentary- Suffering the loss of a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences that anyone could ever have to face. In this case, Raj was Archana’s life and future… and she was his. And finally, after many social and cultural complications to work through, this beautiful Indian couple were soon planning to be married.
In their most beautiful dreams, Archana and Raj envisioned a wonderful life. A life where, together, they could stand strong and fearless to face the uncertain world before them. And born of their strength, commitment and love, the precious children they would bring into the world to have, to raise and enjoy. Oh, the blissful joy that could be experienced with their little family, as they happily grew old together, their loving bond as a shield to protect them, while they weathered life’s worst storms together.
There was such promise for this young couple who had first met and began in October of 2002. Yes, the future looked bright for them and this “forever after” was finally to be realized. But then without notice, something terrible happened that quickly turned this beautiful dream into a horrendous nightmare.
It was in the month of April, 2015, that Raj went away and Archana’s dreams and heart shattered into a million tiny pieces, which would seem impossible to ever repair. There was a lot for her to grieve. There would be days she would spend in total disbelief. There were the days she felt numb and life-less. There was the anger, sadness and despair, along with an array of different emotions experienced upon the spectrum of pain and suffering. Then, there were always the endless supply of tears that fell softly… and sometimes, violently, upon the beautiful face Raj loved.
Those earliest days without her beloved Raj, left Archana’s life almost unbearable to live in. With such a devastating loss and with the physical absence of Raj, Archana’s existence was sorrowful and bleak, to say the least. She lived in a world with neither possibility nor purpose.
As if Raj’s death was not difficult enough for Archana to bear, grieving was made worse by the constant negativity and harassment she was subjected to, by many of the people in her life that were opposed to her and Raj being together in the first place. Yes, this included her family too.
Because of this, Archana spent a lot of time within herself; processing and dealing with her grief the best way that she could. But in her suffering, and with no one to talk to, Archana did consider suicide from time to time. She even made a few unsuccessful attempts that left her still living in her private world of sheer hell.
Interestingly enough, it was October 22, 2016, about a year and a half after Raj’s passing, and also, on the 14-year anniversary of their beginning, that Archana, having had enough of this world, wearily, stood before God’s picture and pleaded for him to bring her home. But nope. That didn’t happen. Instead… it was on that night that Raj came to her in a dream. On the banks of the River Godavari, where he perished, he walked once again and sat by her side. Lovingly, he listened to her pleas. Then, asked for her promise to not end her life prematurely.
For some in so much pain, this would be a difficult promise to make and keep, but pain and darkness can be deceiving. For somewhere under the cover of darkness and in the depths of devastating pain, disguised and hard to see at first, also lurks the hidden light of purpose and possibility. It is only for us to find it through our strength and courage, yet two other important tools.
Suicide is something that is considered under certain conditions. But who or what is in us that wants to suicide and sees this as a viable option? Let’s take a closer look.
When one considers suicide as an option, it is because, in one’s brain, all other coping skills have been exhausted. The brain sees no other choice than to self-destruct. You see, even though the brain’s main duty is programmed for survival at all costs, when there is great mental or emotional pain that the brain can see no coping strategy solution which will stop and remedy the painful problem, some brains feel that they have failed and all is lost. And because of this, the brain then impulsively jumps to the conclusion of worthlessness, defeat and death, when just taking some time to experience this uncomfortable state, could be all one might need, to move ahead with courage.
Here is the good news. YOU ARE NOT YOUR BRAIN! Yes, I’m talking to YOU!
I mean, you have a brain that does a lot of awesome things. It keeps your heartbeat going, allows you to breathe without thinking about it. The brain runs all of the functions of the body really well. But sometimes… it’s not that great in the emotional, mental, psychological department. Then… when some terrible things happen- there is a shortage of mental, emotional and psychological tools available with which to deal. Although people have a brain to think, feel and to operate bodily functions and systems with, people also have a certain consciousness that is not necessarily tied or limited to just the brain.
*Note: If you are reading this and are suicidal, you need to get help immediately. There are people who specialize in getting you the quick help you need. Emergency resources.
One of the best tools against suicide is to give yourself the space you need to consider everything in your life. Slow down. If you can do it now, you can always do it later on. Talk it out with someone. Tell someone what’s going on and how you feel. Get the help you need!
While surfing the internet on how to commit suicide, Archana happened upon one of my posts about suicide, called, The Exit Interview. Although she was looking for ways to commit suicide, it seems that my post slowed her down enough to think it through. While each person is responsible for their own choices, taking the time to go through this Exit Interview will give well-needed perspective, which, along with time, consideration and communication, are amazing tools to put in one’s metaphorical tool box. And, I want to be clear that, although I recognize that people have a choice of how they live or don’t live their lives, I don’t advise suicide. Although it might seem to be an answer of relief to the one who would be leaving, it is a painful living hell for those left behind who were helpless to do enough to have stopped it. Being someone who has “been there” before, (both ends of this), I advise time, perspective, consideration and communication, simply because… it works.
Something might have gone really wrong for someone in life, but please keep in mind, there is nothing that can’t be worked through, given time, perspective, consideration and communication. Life can expose us to some painful mental and emotional experiences, but living through them, and actively dealing with them, will NOT kill us… although we might wish they would at the time. Dealing with these uglies will give us the tools to make us strong, wise and more capable to dealing with the stresses of life, and more peaceful too.
Of course, there is the scenario where one needs medication to maintain proper brain chemical balance. If this is the case, make sure to visit a doctor. But, I’m not referring to this in my post, and I am not a doctor. I’m talking about situational experiences in life, such as a loss, that force a person to have to cope and/or work out some of life’s most difficult problems.
When someone is dealing with the worst mental/emotional stuff, caused by life asserting its will on us, what we usually find is that the person experiencing this personal hell has a perspective that has become void of all purpose or possibility. Without any purpose or possibility, what is the point to life? Then… because of that thought, the brain might consider suicide to be an answer. But is it really?
My question for this person is… What’s it going to take to change your perspective? What’s it going to take to adopt some new purpose and possibility into your life? Remember… time, perspective, consideration and communication. It works!
So now, having lived through some pretty devastating stuff, over her 18 months of dealing with her loss, Archana has developed some of her own powerful tools of coping that will help her get through her life. And as she continues to heal, her metaphorical tool box will grow in size. Her new tools earned and acquired will serve to be an inspiration for those who watch and follow, for misfortune could happen to anyone.
Since Archana’s dream with Raj, on the same river bank where he perished, life has been more manageable. She doesn’t feel suicidal anymore, even though there is some continuing pain. Sure, she misses him dearly. She misses what might have been. But, she has made the choice to live, because, she says,”When I’m living, I’m loving Raj more and more. Raj is an example of love and trust that goes beyond life and death.” Notice, that Archana is using the power of love as one of her tools.
Archana’s dream visitation from Raj is very poignant as it conveys a powerful message to Archana. In it, there is Raj, sitting beside Archana, on the exact place of his passing. After Raj listens to Archana’s concerns, with love, he gently takes her hand, and just like a proposal, he asks Archana to choose the promise of life. In that very place where Raj’s physical life expired, and with her newly made vow, what Raj has really asked of Archana is to dare to live life with all the courage and strength that it takes to do so, without him physically by her side.
No, death was not ready for Archana on the many days she had asked to leave this life. It’s still not. And, although she may not be quite 100% healed yet as the million shattered pieces of her dreams and heart will take more time to mend, like the once defeated Phoenix burning itself to the ground, what Archana really accepted from Raj that night, was the vow and promise to be reborn and rise up from the ashes of her pain and suffering (the river bank where it all happened), with renewed life, purpose and possibility to become the newer, stronger and wiser version of the girl she once knew.
Although Raj is no longer of the physical world, this in no way affects the depth of their continued spiritual love and commitment to one another, as Archana has had the opportunity to receive many after-death communications from her beloved, Raj. This has made it possible for her to know without any doubt, that, although their dreams in life were once interrupted, and although her heart broke with pain, their love continues to live on until they are reunited again someday. And… that’s when their real “forever after” will be truly realized.