Chose to live

What would this world look like without you?

Have you ever thought of how different the world would be after you are gone? We can come up with umpteen number of answers to this question. However, most people would not contemplate this when they decide to end their life. The COVID 19 pandemic has pushed many into self-destructive mode.  It surprises me, how a micro-organism has turned our lives topsy-turvy. A few months of coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of psychological trauma in many. The news of the young and vibrant, old and mature, poor and needy, rich and creamy choosing to end their lives keeps haunting the media every day. Reading about families crumpling because of these suicides is heart-breaking.

Some chose to end their lives as they lost their job, while others decided to flee from anxiety and fear of isolation and quarantine. A large part of it could also be attributed to social isolation. We have never experienced anything like this in the near past. For the last couple of decades, the world has been moving at a higher pace than the earlier decades, and a sudden slowdown/stop has its impact. The sad and astounding fact is that those who chose to kill themselves were not able to find one strong reason to live.

Hari Singh, 80-year-old, owner of the famous Iruttu Kadai Halwa (A famous Indian Sweet company) in south Tamil Nadu, hung himself hours after his COVID swab test indicated that he was positive. Someone who had the capacity and capability to run a century-old establishment successfully for many years did not have the perseverance to sail through this challenge. Where did all the life lessons that he would have gathered over the years go?

We tend to see the bad, listen to the bad, process the bad more and more, crawl into a world where nothing else exists. It requires an extra push, an extra kick to break the pattern and emerge out to think and process rationally.

Hardest moments often lead us to the greatest moments of life, as Roy Benette puts it, provided we are strong enough to withstand it. Our ability to persist and not quit defines who we are. There is life beyond the challenges, and life is amazing, full of surprises. Stay on to experience it to the fullest.  We have a limited life span with a fixed timeline, and the universe is packed with loads and loads of beautiful, astonishing, inexplicable things. Do not give up halfway; do not succumb to illusionary hurdles. Understand that hurdles/obstacles do not block the path, but they are the path.

Look out for the infinite hope, count your blessings. I am certain that they would give you the courage to travel through a difficult period. Rough patches in life may seem like they are going to last forever, understand that “This too shall pass….”. Something that matters the most now may not matter at all in a few years.

The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well!

— Ralph Waldo Emerson

Learn to love thyself, you are unique and special. Keep calm and accept that you cannot control everything, but can control something. Fight the self-destructive urges. Remember, when you are gone, your near and dear and maybe the whole world may experience you through whatever legacy you leave behind, But, what would you experience? Do not waste your life, for you will get no other!

When in doubt, always choose to live –
for you are worth it!

— based on Terry Pratchett’s quote

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