To The Cousin That Chose Death

Do you regret it? Naturally, it’s a question not far from your initial expectation. Taking your own life is not only considered one of the most selfish acts, but also the ultimate sin. However, I cease to think you’re being punished from afar, as I feel you’ve already suffered enough. I don’t blame you. I often wondered to myself, “What makes life so terrible that you feel as if death is your only escape?” Now, I understand. Because that’s exactly what it is; an escape. 

I’m so sorry. And while I apologize that you weren’t properly mourned the way you deserved given the incredibly blindsiding circumstances, I also apologize for the events that led to your draining endeavor through life, the “gift” that is supposed to be wonderful. You were nothing but a joy, as I often revert to my childhood memories of visits and words if wisdom. You were my biggest cheerleader, and I failed in giving you something to cheer for. And despite my personal failure, I also failed to cheer for you in return. 

It wasn’t “what” made your life so unbearable, but rather the “who”. While intangible matters do play a featured role, we are so heavily influenced by those who surround us both at our own will and against. You forgot who you were, and, again, I’m so sorry for that. 

As kids, we’re taught the chant “stick and stone” or the popular “I’m rubber, you’re glue” to ward off any unwanted criticism or bullies. However, as we grow, the words become nastier, cutting deeper and deeper into our core and the mere chants become invalid. They lose the magic that kept them alive and well in our once juvenile minds. Alas, the simple “you’re stupid” is absolutely incomparable to the cruel insults that the world is, in fact, ridden with. And while motivational quotes tell to “hang in there” and “give them something to be jealous of”, they forget that a quote is simply a quote. It’s up to us, the reader, to live by it. Yet, if we can’t even live by “honor thy mother and thy father”, how are we expected to grasp any form of written rule. 

When I was a kid, I can distinctively remember the first time I heard my mother curse. As the forbidden “f-bomb” left her lips, my heart sank as I internally wondered, “Why does mom know the worst curse word?” Growing older, I became painfully aware that there were words far more severe than what I had ever anticipated. Funny how it’atrocious to wish death upon someone, but not to formulate the hurtful words and phrases that ultimately embody the self fulfilled act. 

An insult doesn’t require a swear word to be searingly painful. “You are a failure” cuts even deeper than “fuck you”, while the word “never” has a far deeper meaning that the most vulgar of swears. The idea of never being loved can, perhaps, be the death sentence we were awaiting. 

And while I break concluding that that was your fear, cousin, I can strongly urge you that I loved you more than I ever made apparent, and I blame myself for expecting you to know. As I admit that I share the same fear that may have driven you to your demise, I desperately wish that I would have bitten the bullet of fear and reached out to your hurting self. Had I done so, maybe we could have pulled ourselves out of this together. 

I’m sorry. 

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