One week ago, the anniversary of my brother's death and just hours after learning of a dear friend's passing I clicked on to FaceBook to see the news that Robin William's had died. That he had committed suicide.
My initial thought was it's so sad, but even worse because he ended his own life. I frantically searched around online looking for an article to say it wasn't so. The article wasn't there. I was sad.
As I searched my brain caught up to my knee jerk reaction and I thought to myself, why is suicide worse? A loss is a loss. Horribly sad that before his passing he was in pain, and in specific context to his passing on, dead is dead isn't it?
I texted a friend simply "nanu nanu". What more could be said?
I have tried to pass on all of the articles passing judgement, in defense or condemnation. I have thought quite a bit about my views on suicide over the past week as well. Based upon the headlines that clog my universe wherever I go, we all have. My beloved stepfather ended his own life over a decade ago. My ex brother in law who in a way I grew up with made the same choice. Other family members, more than one, have made attempts without success. Suicide isn't a new subject to contemplate and again and again I have come to realize one thing.
It doesn't matter what I think. It doesn't matter what you think either. The choice belongs to the individual contemplating it and no one else. It's not about us, and maybe that sucks, but it's about them. You need to say goodbye, hold the sweet memories in your heart, and move on. (I guess there are other options but none I am interested in...)
I sat and thought about my sweet memories of Robin Williams and created a story circle.
I thought of Mork and Mindy and the late afternoon/early evening companionship the show offered me in elementary school after my parents divorced and we moved in to town. The way it was the last show in our afternoon lineup and well beyond the time limit my mom had set for us while she was at the office. The way more than once we swiftly ran to the TV and turned it off as we saw her headlights pull in the driveway. The way each night when the show ended it was "nanu nanu".
Nanu nanu is Orkin for hello and goodbye. It has been likened to aloha. After living for a brief stint in Nepal I would like to liken it to namaste.
The light in me saw the light in you Robin. Nanu Nanu...