I recently saw A Star is Born with Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga. This movie absolutely touched my heart and impacted my life in a way I never expected. It’s a love story – a sweet one – but tragic – all at the same time. It just happens to have fallen into a time where suicide is a big topic. Bradley Cooper’s character just couldn’t make it in life. He really felt the only way for her (Lady Gaga’s character) to live her life fully is if he simply ceased to exist. That just slays me. He gave up. If you’ve seen the original A Star is Born that was made back in the 70’s with Kris Kristofferson and Barbra Streisand,it was just as tragic. I happen to think this new version is sadder and more devastating. It didn’t have to be that way, yet I related so well to his plight and hers. He didn’t think he’d ever be good enough for her, nor did he think he could ever be whole. He wore his sadness and his despair on his sleeve. You just knew he wasn’t happy in his soul. She just wanted him to be OK. I am deeply saddened that he didn’t think there was an alternative. The scene in the movie where the garage door is closed and his dog is laying in front of it just shattered my heart. Still does. Tearing up just writing about it. The music is just beautiful, and some of it is haunting. I am in awe of Bradley Cooper and Lady Gage. I didn’t feel like I was watching a movie. I felt like I was intruding on someone’s privacy. It was so personal and so intimate and so devastatingly real. If you haven’t seen it, you should. Be warned.
How many of us walk around smiling when we’re dying inside? How many of us don’t reach out for help? How many of are ashamed of feeling sad and tired? How many us feel like living is so much work? How many of us don’t want to be judged or called weak? How many of us are just trying to fake it until we make it? How many of us are getting help only to give up? How many of us simply smile through all the pain? How many of us are just waiting for the day to be over? How do we really know who is hurting and needs our help?
I saw the movie a couple weeks ago and I am still sad about it. I am usually good at just moving on from sadness. I am deeply saddened that she lost the love of her life. She will never be the same. Her life is eternally altered. I understand that those who take their lives are hurting, but if they could see what they leave behind they would stay. The pain and utter sadness that goes with making that kind of decision is overwhelming and heavy and loud. Mothers, Fathers, Sisters, Brothers, Daughters, Sons, Husbands, Wives, Friends – every person who ever takes their life means something to someone, which means the someones they left behind are altered forever. Period.
Having been there numerous times and almost succeeding the last time, I feel I can call those who take their lives selfish. That was by far the most selfish act I’ve ever committed. My children wouldn’t have had a Mom anymore. It would have changed their lives forever. I still get chills when I think about that, and I know how lucky I am that the Universe simply said it wasn’t my time. I haven’t completed my journey here. Might sound stupid or weird to some of you, but there have been a good 4+ times in my life where I should have died….and didn’t. Some my doing – some health related. Maybe I have 9 lives. You never know. BUT I am grateful. It hasn’t kept me from having deep bouts of sadness, but I’m here and when my mind starts to wander, my children come to mind pretty quickly, and I do my best to sit in the sadness until it subsides a bit.
I have purposely not written in a long time because I didn’t want to be sad or angry when I wrote. I didn’t want to add to anyone’s sadness or despair. But, here I am. I am sad, but it’s not so bad that I can’t navigate through it. When people who know me read these, some of them feel sad or sorry for me. I don’t. It is what it is right now. I’m not asking for sympathy or to be placated or to be coddled or any of those things that are annoying and misunderstood. I’m just talking about my feelings. My life. There is no compensation that needs to be done. Just be yourself around me. I’ve been this same person for most of my life that I can remember. So, changing who you are to fit me is not necessary. I know that there are plenty of you out there who think if you just act this way or do this thing, it will help whoever is truly sad in your life change, but it won’t. It has nothing to do with you. The fact that you’re standing by our sides is enough.
Honestly, we may not even notice when you change something in your behavior. I’m pretty good at it, but not everyone is observant. For those like me, the changes you make are instantly noted, and then we worry to death about why you’ve changed. Our sadness simply doesn’t have anything to do with you. Maybe in some cases. Not mine. I no longer surround myself with negative people who take advantage of my sometimes sadness. It took me a long time to get rid of those people, but I did. And, those people I allowed to keep me down didn’t care how I felt nor did they ever think of things they could do to ease my sadness. If someone like that is reading this, then it isn’t something they can understand. If it’s not solely about them, there isn’t a point.
The most important thing I have to say today is if you’re changing the way you are in hopes of pleasing someone else or making them “OK”, stop it. It doesn’t matter what side of the coin you’re on. If you’re the sad one and you feel you can’t talk about it or you’re hiding it because you feel the other person won’t understand, then be honest with them. Let them know how you’re feeling. It’s not fair to them if they don’t know how you’re feeling. Once you talk to them, go from there. Even if they don’t understand, it’s OK. They’ll let you know if you’re worth it.
Whoever is sad and reading this right now, you’re worth this life. You’re stronger than you think. Reaching out by reading others posts is therapy and means you’re trying. That’s all we can do. Be our best self on any given day. Sometimes, we’re at 100%, and sometimes we’re sitting close to empty. That’s being human. No one can be perfect. It just doesn’t happen. We are all perfect in our imperfections. I hope you all know how special you are to someone.