For twenty two of her forty one years she had lived under the specter of being mentally ill. A hellish twilight region known as bipolar disease, a place that few know and fewer fully understand. Every day was a struggle. A dark world where every direction held uncertainty and fear. Every shadow was a ghost to dread and every noise was the start of an assault.
She struggled on showing a strength that not many people have. A determination to fight the un-winnable fight. Desperate to be liked by everyone and loved by those close to her. She was the inherent mixture of fun, happy and miserable. She could be a real pain in the ass at times and mean as hell to those who cared most for her, she could also make you laugh. She was ill. That was known and she was loved. She knew that, deep down she knew but could only see a cold, lonley future. Sometimes being loved just is not enough.
Over the past couple of years the, irrational, worry of what the future held began to drag her down. Fear of little things like how she would do the shopping to the big things like how would she pay the bills. An inherent fear of loneliness, a fear of living within the realm of the mentally ill with no one to hug her and no one to make her smile. A fear of things the future may hold.
There had been some previous pseudo suicide attempts. Scratching with knives and threats. Nothing to leave a mark on her just cries for help and a strength that she could not find within herself. She was a lovely, considerate, kind girl who did not deserve this. She was an innocent. She deserved better; the best.
Her parents came home yesterday to find her hanged from the banisters. Her dad did all he could, knowing CPR, and the Ambulance crew turned up to take over. Realistically there was noting that could be done but the effort made really did make all the difference. I cant stress this enough. I know it was a token gesture, but it mattered that it was made.
Sometimes you become hardened, not unconscious of, or immune to, the suffering of the relatives. Just, "it's a job", it's what we do. You clear the scene and control send through the next call - off you go. Another day at the coal face.
No matter how hardened you become, how long in the tooth, how much of an old hand you may feel - when it's your sister it hurts like fuck.
Goodbye, Morag. I love you and I'm going to miss you. I hope you have found peace. Sorry I was not there when the storm broke.