I went with my mom to visit my grandmother in the nursing home today. I try to go with her whenever she says she’s going and asks if I’d care to join her. Lately I haven’t been up for doing much of anything since the depression has gotten bad and has lasted a lot longer than usual. I managed to go tonight, though. I watched as my grandmother said grace a total of six times, forgetting she had already said it time and time again. I watched as she talked to the baby doll my mom brought her as though it was an actual human being. I watched as she talked to people in her life who are long dead. I watched her jabber on about nothing at all, not making any sense whatsoever.
I also looked around the dining hall where a lot of the other patients go to have their meals. Some of them can still feed themselves. Others need help. A handful of others can’t communicate at all and are all but vegetables sitting in their chairs. It makes me wonder what they’re holding onto and why life allows them to keep going. It also made me think, “I hope I’m dead before I ever reach that point in my life.”
I’m reminded of a joke by Bill Hicks when he was talking about people reminding him how bad smoking is for you. “People say quitting smoking will prolong your life. They don’t tell you if a prolonged life is a good thing. I haven’t read the statistics on that one.” Why do people want to live forever? My grandmother is 91 and has no idea who she is, where she is, who anyone is. I don’t want to be trapped in my own mind, having to be fed by others, having others give me a shower, having others wipe my ass for me. If I get to that point I hope I have enough of my mind left to put myself out of my own misery.
I have tried taking better care of myself as of late. I stepped on the scale recently and noticed I am down 40 pounds, which I am proud of myself for getting there, but I still have a ways to go. I know I’m not going to live forever and I don’t want to. I struggle with wanting to stick around a lot, though. I dread waking up most days. I have thoughts of suicide race through my mind constantly, but I try to shake them off. I’m not quite ready to leave just yet. If you ask me tomorrow then I may tell you something completely different.
I don’t know what I want from one day to the next. I just know that I don’t want to be like those I see in the nursing home. I don’t want to have to be fed, bathed, and clothed by others. If that ever happens then I may just pay someone to “accidentally” forget about the air bubbles in my IV.