We have a dog at work, which belongs to one of my colleagues. When the dog first arrived he was a happy animal who would bound up to people and get a stroke in return. He is now a miserable looking dog, who is a bit smelly and spends his time going through our bins looking for food and doing circuits round the office to keep himself amused. He does keep us amused too, when he occasionally wanders into meetings or leaves a paper trail of destruction behind him. There is something kind of therapeutic about having him about though, and if you can go and wash your hands after coming into contact with him then it can do you a world of good to just give him a bit of attention.
I was talking to someone at work yesterday about the chap who killed himself and she just said “well, it shows that there’s no type. Anyone, however, strong they may appear to be can reach a point where they see no other option but to take their own life.” I can see that – and also that people who kill themselves are not therefore ‘weak’. I think that sometimes make such decisions for seemingly (to them) very rational reasons. It does make me wonder if there was some way to understand the devastation that it would bring to those left behind (meaning family and friends, rather than people who were at rather more of a distance such as myself) that it could somehow have tipped the balance. There’s no way to generalise about these things though. There might be common themes and steps that can be taken to reduce the likelihood but ultimately everyone has their own story, different ways to cope and different thresholds beyond which they potentially can bare no more. It makes you think.
Another thing that made me think was an article on the BBC about missing people. I think I’ve said before that this is an area that really fascinates me, mainly because when I worked at a university one of the students in my department just disappeared one day and had never been heard of since (which must be a good ten years ago now and even at the time the belief seemed to be that she had probably been murdered). Then a few years ago, one of my friends disappeared one day leaving behind her husband and home. I managed, after many months and much persistence, to track her down and I spent a long time talking to her about what was going on with her and she did eventually come back. I sometimes think it is experiences like that which give me my dogged persistence about things – and sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Sometimes people run away whether literally or emotionally and despite attempts to draw them back there is no way of doing so.
I think I am just in the mood to ponder things at the moment – but am neither depressed or in need of an intervention. Have no fear!
I shall leave you with a nice song though.