Permanent Solution

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I thought I had been healing. Leaving those thoughts behind, healing my mind, letting life be lived. I had let myself have these thoughts before, but they had never been just thoughts. I had planned it once, but chickened out before I actually swallowed the pills. I was afraid that by doing it, nothing would get better. A permanent solution to a temporary problem, how could it possibly work?

I never would have imagined this being what set me off. I decided to get away from it all – go on vacation. I chose the beach for its serenity, thinking nothing could ever go wrong here. How could something happen in such a beautiful place?

I'd forgotten that I had my shoes on. I was walking, imagining myself in another world and losing myself in the imagination. I just starting walking on the beach, right along the shore line. The water licked at my shoes and the bottoms of my jeans, making them cling to my legs. I didn't notice for a while, still lost in a world where problems didn't exist.

The salt began to irritate my legs at the same time I noticed my shoes filled with sand. My mind snapped back to reality, back to the world that I live in. I related the sensations to my own life. My shoes, overflowing with sand, not able to hold all of it. Like my head with the problems I faced every day. My head can't take it all, wanting to explode with everything in it. My horrible boss, my wife leaving me, my own son not willing to talk to me. I haven't talked to my parents in years, not wanting to hear the disappointment at what my life had become. I was no longer able to bear it.

The salt irritated me, just like my life. It irritates me that I'm letting all of these things into my mind, letting them push me to my limits. They're constantly in my mind, itching at my thoughts at every opportunity.

Now, sitting in the hotel bathroom with a bottle of pills in my hand, I run back to that moment at the beach. I had run back to my hotel room, not stopping to take off my shoes or roll up my wet pants. They both created a puddle around me, still irritating all the skin they touched.

I don't know what the pills are for. All I know is that they can be deadly if you take too many. About a year ago, when I had planned my own death, they had sat on my counter, staring at me, helping to push me to the limit. Just like now, I had taken them to the bathroom and spilled a bunch of them into my hand. But unlike now, I had stopped to think. As I had put my hand full of pills to my lips, wondering at the mystery of what life after death would hold, I had stopped. I had pictured faces of people that meant something to me. My son, whom I desperately wanted to watch grow into a man. My wife, the woman I always loved and always will. I hoped she could forgive me, if I turned into a better man. My parents, who had raised me. What would they think if I had done it?

But now, as those faces pass through my mind, they only compel me to push the pills through my wanting lips. My son, who had told me I was trash, not worth his time. My wife, who told me she never wants to see me again. She told me she could never love a man like me, no matter how much better I got. My parents, who wouldn't even speak to me anymore. My boss passes through my mind this time, telling me I'm worthless and I'm lucky he doesn't fire me. I see each time he accuses me of his wrongdoings, letting me take the fall.

When I'm lying in my casket, will they look at me with remorse? Will they know that they pushed me to this point? Or will they be glad to be rid of my burden? Tears fill my eyes as I tip my head back, letting the small pills fall into my mouth. I swallow them one at a time, focusing on the trail of pain they leave down my throat as I swallow them dry.

I rejoice at the silence that fills my mind. The pure peace that grasps at me as my body becomes heavy. I'm tired, but I don't know why. I slip off of the edge of the bathtub and lie myself onto the floor. I can't form a coherent thought. Why? I'm so tired. I feel something clenched in my hand, but I don't know what it is. I lift my arm, marveling at how heavy it is, like it's made of stone. There's an orange bottle. A pill bottle. Why am I grasping an empty pill bottle? I let it fall out of my hand as my arm drops back to the floor. The pure exhaustion is taking over. Maybe I should just take a quick nap.

I close my heavy eyelids, wondering how long I'll sleep. It feels good to give into the need. As I drift to sleep, a smile creeps over my stiff lips. The light fades from my outside of my eyelids, and I no longer know pain, or grief, or anything. I am happy, and I am at peace. I have given into my permanent solution.





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