I am working on a new project which I hope
to finish up within several months. For now I will upload a few new
entries to my site, including the following update...
The short version:
I had been planning since
October/November 2010 to check out a possible suicide option for my
birthday in March 2011. I gave up alcohol for a few months so that I
would be 'together enough' to give it my best shot, although it was
not a sure thing. I did not discuss my plans with anyone.
Unfortunately, I am still 'alive', and am again out of control with
The long version:
I made it through another birthday,
and in a way a kind of pressure is over. I am now 45. It is no longer
a big block of time and space that looms and casts a shadow over or
influences all my actions leading up to it. I have lost track of how
many days I have been drunk in the last weeks.
I can't just pretend that I don't think of or remember the date (of
my birthday), or that it doesn't influence me. Mainly, it is a kind
of programming that I can't override, and I don't even try. I just
try to make the most of the day.
I first made a booking months ago, for a date in December. As the
date approached, I knew I was not feeling strong enough to even leave
the house - I had only left the house a few times in the last two
years at that point. I cancelled, but made a decision to rebook for a
future date, so that I would have a kind of 'hope' that I could still
eventually 'do something' about my situation (which includes but is
not limited to my increasing age). I didn't realize that in rebooking
I would lose the discount rate I had been offered, or that I was now
liable for the full cost of the booking no matter what.
Still, the important part was the 'hope'. I had decided to rebook for
dates which included my 45th birthday. I had always thought it would
be fitting to die on the anniversary of my birth. It's a way of tying
things up neatly, making a kind of statement, and not creating
unpleasant associations for other days that might be special to
people. I started making these plans in October, and in late November
I readjusted these plans. I tried to prepare myself psychologically
as well as I could. I did not involve anyone, or even hint about my
When the day came, I was not feeling strong. When I arrived at the
hotel (by taxi), I was given a room on the 26th floor. In the
elevator, it took me a few moments to work out that I needed to use
my key card to get it to go up. When I got to the room, I swiped the
card a million times, but could not open the door to my room. I
checked the room number, I tried again and again, and felt a bit
incompetent, thinking that I must not be doing it right. I decided
eventually that I would have to go back down to reception and confess
that I just couldn't work out how to do it.
It turned out that the battery in the door was completely flat. It
had to be changed. I guess the room hadn't been used any time
recently? Anyway, I was eventually left alone in the room. After I
checked out the view from the private balcony, I unpacked a bit and
ordered room service. It was kind of fun to order: I requested two
bottles of wine, a vegetarian pizza and a cheese and fruit platter.
My order arrived promptly. I also noted that there was an order form
for breakfast. I ticked a skim milk cappuccino and a muffin, and
remembered to put the form on the doorknob before 2 am.
I didn't leave the room again until I checked out. I was reasonably
brave/normal the first night, but the next day when I tried to order
room service again and no one picked up, I began to falter. I tried a
few more times, and then gave up and ate some of the snacks and drank
most of the alcohol from the minibar.
I didn't go online, watch movies or TV while I was there. I was
pretty sure I wasn't going to get any email (I hadn't received
anything except for a worm, when I checked after leaving the hotel),
there wasn't anyone for me to email (or call). The only thing I did
there was listen to music.
I don't think it's a good idea to spend a lot of time beating myself
up about how weak and revolting I am for not killing myself when I
had the best chance I've had in a long time. I will have to examine
some of the details and my conscious assessments, but I don't think
it will be fruitful to approach things with a focus that I am a
completely useless human being with no redeeming qualities.
I made the decision to allow the life I say I don't want to continue,
even though this does not make sense. I wasn't completely sure
beforehand that I would be 'lucky' enough to have a 'good'
opportunity. When I booked my room, I was aware only that I was
guaranteed a room on the 16th or 17th floor or higher, and that I
would have my own private balcony. I didn't know what side I'd be on,
I didn't know what would be directly below me, and checking out
Google street view did not completely make everything clear,
I did not choose the hotel for its uniqueness or character; I chose
it only as a potential suicide option, the most realistic one I could
come up with for me personally. One element of the situation was very
much that I didn't want to have to resort to it, I hoped that
something 'better' would come up, something 'easier', less 'ugly'.
But my conscious assessment was/is that my life is a horror, and that
I really needed to try to be firm and do something about it, as my
situation is likely to get worse over time.
While it is true that as I get older my situation gets worse in that
I am likely to accumulate health problems in addition to addictions
and depression, I think it's possible that over time I am getting
better at articulating my situation, and that in between breakdowns,
and even during breakdowns, I have accomplished various things and
have even had something of a 'life'. Not an ordinary life, but I did
want something 'different', and I definitely think I've had
It's worth pointing out that I have a right to want a 'good' suicide
method, and not to have to resort to something I find ugly. It's also
worth pointing out that since I do tend to create and choose places
and activities symbolically, that I might actually need
choose a death that satisfies some internal creative drive. The hotel
was 'acceptable' and 'inoffensive', but it was bland. It was more
expensive than most places I have chosen for myself, but was less
unusual, less interesting to me.
On my birthday I discovered that one of my eyes was swollen. I had
somehow managed to get some kind of infection in this hotel. I have
heard that hotels are notoriously unhygienic. Anyway, it cleared up
within 24 hours of leaving the hotel, I think.
I do not think I want to live. If unconsciously I do, maybe it is
somehow related to me not being able to be honest enough or conscious
enough about how I really feel. I have honestly tried to approach
things from as many angles as possible. I think I have anger related
to a possible assessment of my life: that it might be the ultimate
'truth' of my existence that I am someone who cancels out my good
qualities with my negative and awkward ones. And there is no one to
complain to about it. I can't seem to change enough
, I can't
manage to reason my way out of it, I am not smart or strong enough,
which seems to 'prove' the point. Nothing I try 'tricks' my patterns
efficently enough, they are always too strong.
I accept that the people I have had the most contact with in more
than a decade take me at my word, and that they accept my assessments
regarding my life. What this means is that I am not thinking that
anyone will try to change my mind, intervene, or express that the
world will be a less good place without me in it. I think it is
possible that they will respect me more
if I manage to kill
myself than if I continue to live in the state I'm in, expressing the
same sentiments year after year. However, if make a suicide attempt,
I can't put others in the position of having knowledge beforehand.
If for whatever reason I am not ready to die, I have a couple of
options. I have been here before. I can decide to completely stop
holding back, for any reason, and just drink or indulge 'unhealthy'
patterns nonstop, without trying to take small measures to hold on to
health at all (doctor's assessments from January-February 2011
suggest I am likely to hold up pretty well for some time to come), I
can stop taking anyone's feelings into account, I can stop being
'decent' or sensitive to my environment at all, and I can stop all
efforts to explain or express anything. That really may not be
'realistic' for me.
The other option is to look at the little ideas that have popped up,
and to explore them and cross them off the list.
I have had an instinct to gather supplies, as if preparing to hide in
a bomb shelter. 'In case I can't go out', what would it make me more
comfortable to stock up on?
I'm now in the hibernating state, which means my self-esteem is too
low to deal with the outside world. I suppose now is the time that
the patterns/behaviours/thoughts behind the behaviours need to be
challenged, but it's been so many years, decades with only me to
challenge them, and I've proven to be ineffectual. So I will
struggle to get out from under addictions, I will struggle to find
reasons to go outside, I will struggle to come up with new potential
plans to solve the problems, and along the way may add a bit more to
I almost forgot to mention that in the early hours of my birthday, I
actually danced. It's been so long (so many years) that I probably
shouldn't have expected much of myself, but it was still kind of
difficult after to shake off a feeling that it was now futile, that I
was now too old. There was a violence and exuberance to my movements
which was pretty much expressed through me hurling my body around and
crashing into everything, there was not enough range, nuance or
control, and probably most of the time I was not actually moving with
or to the music. The types of exercise I had been doing were not
enough to prepare for this kind of physical expression, which is very
demanding even for a very young body. In the past, I at least had
the illusion I could communicate effectively through motion, but that
night I knew that I could not.
Maybe before I died I wanted to have a 'last dance', and it was
fitting that it be alone. I wanted the 'high', I wanted the feeling
that I had taken all the chaos and translated it into something I
liked. I failed in that task, and slunk back defeated to my bomb
Still, I hadn't expected I would be able to dance at all. It has been
so many years since the last time. It's one thing to wish that
something like that will come back, but it really had felt completely
impossible, I hadn't thought I'd even try. And suddenly, I was on my