Things we’ll never know…

*Trigger warning: suicidal content*

She was 22
when she died.
Took her own life,
it was said.
Jumped off the hostel roof,
ending what was
so promising a future.

Near genius-level intellect,
studying medicine and finance
(at the same time),
but finding no fulfilment,
it seems,
in what life had to offer.

I met her once,
after numerous emails before:
a supper where
I left a poor impression,
so overwhelmed was I
by the social environment
back when I was far more
painfully shy
than now.

Unsurprisingly,
things went no further –
though it was a first lesson
in heartbreak,
which made me stronger
for the rollercoaster years
of a quest for companionship
which ended years later.

I recall so little of her:
she took up smoking
to look cool;
father had passed when she was younger,
and had just her mother and brother left.

She lived in a university residence –
perhaps the same hostel
from which she jumped;
and faced pressures
of an environment where she was the “other”.

But on she went,
getting on with life
as we all must.

And our last conversation
on the phone
was one I don’t remember much of,
but I guess we wished each other well;
and went our separate ways.

When I got back home,
away from her city,
I sent her a postcard,
though I can’t recall
if she ever mentioned getting it.

Little did I know
that two years later,
she’d depart.
But I only learnt of it
17 years after.

And I wonder
what she carried.
The invisible burdens
which weighed down so heavily…
more than she felt she could bear.

They say she left a note,
yet it still wasn’t clear
why she jumped.

And I wonder what she wrote.
Was it philosophical?
Melancholy?
Insightful?
Did she speak of anguish?

Were those the last words
she expressed?
Did she speak to anyone
after penning
that farewell?
Did she write anything else?
Message her mom
or brother?

Did she pray
to be reunited
with her father
on the other side?

Were there tears in her eyes
as she climbed up to that rooftop?
The precipice
from which there would be no return.

Did she think of turning back?
Giving life another chance?

What were her last thoughts
before she stepped onto the edge?

And as she stepped off,
and as she plummeted
13 storeys,
did she regret
taking so drastic a step?

Or did she feel peace
at last?
Knowing her suffering
would soon conclude.

Questions
that run through my mind,
in time so far removed.
Thoughts of one
who didn’t make it
this far…
but if she’d chosen differently,
would life have been kind to her?

Things we’ll never know…
Things we’ll never know…


This piece is a true story, based on someone I knew many years ago – and only recently found out what became of her.

If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or pain, please reach out to someone for help. There’s always help around…

Image by Rosie Kerr on Unsplash

2 thoughts on “Things we’ll never know…

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