My last blog, where I quoted Chuck Palahniuk, inspired this blog.
There is no hiding the fact that I’m a Chuck Palahniuk fan. I’m cringing with this admission because I realize his books are marketed to teen-aged boys but I can’t help but feel inspired by his gritty wisdom.
This is one of my favorite Palahniuk quotes:
“You have endless ways you can commit suicide without ‘dying’ dying.”
Two months after my father’s suicide, I came across this line in one of Palahniuk’s books. I stopped reading and put the book down so that I could give it some thought. I remember feeling put-off by the idea of comparing anything short of suicide, to actual suicide.
And then the truth of the statement struck me.
There really are endless ways to destroy ourselves without actually pulling the trigger. We eat too much, to the point of painful obesity that robs us of our quality of life. We drink too much. We use too many drugs. We destroy relationships that we value. We spend ourselves into the ground. We waste our lives doing things we hate. We promise ourselves that “next year we’ll do xyz” but next year never comes. We marry for destructive reasons, divorce for destructive reasons, work jobs that kill us in pieces.
We convince ourselves that we’ll make a change tomorrow or next week or next year or when the kids are raised. We suffer endlessly, living half-lives until we’re all the way dead.
Or, we can do something else.
If you’re reading this blog, you can probably relate to what I’m saying—because I doubt I’m so entertaining that you would keep reading if none of what I was saying resonated with you.
What if you decided that happiness and peace in your life was a goal today? This isn’t to say that you have to make radical changes today. But what if you decided that you weren’t going to keep killing yourself in countless little ways?
What small thing would you change today if you decided that misery wasn’t good enough anymore? One small shift at a time, in a healthier direction, eventually adds up to a happier, healthier life.