“It was right outside this metaphysical book store. I thought it could be a sign. Lately, I seem to look for signs. The closer I get to menopause, the more metaphysical I’m becoming. Oh I had no idea who it belonged to. Anyone living in that neighborhood had reason to want to end it all. Cheers.
(Again laughs, attempting to be light)
When I was in L.A. I found this suicide note in the street…where my aerobics class is. I don’t know why I picked it up. You know it’s more my nature to step over things… I felt so sad at what she’d written in the note, but I felt even worse when I realized that losing the note could only add to her feelings of low self-esteem, further evidence she could never do anything right. I should imagine there’s only one thing more depressing than writing a suicide note, and that’s losing the one you’ve just written….
What is it about this phantom person that is so compelling? She seemed so fragile and yet, courageous, too. Ironically, there is in this suicide note more feeling, more forgiveness, more capacity for life… Whatever this person is, or was, she was not jaded. She was not bored. If she ever did commit suicide, it would be out of feeling too much, not too little.
(Pause, reflects, not sure what she means)
There’s hardly a trace of bitterness or self-pity or petty anything. Her only real complaint is something she calls “This business of false hopes”. That’s really something, don’t you think? I mean, in writing a suicide note the real person must come out. I tell you there’s nothing dramatic, no big tragedy, no terminal illness it seemed, just a lifetime of
dismissed….by everyone apparently.
For awhile I kept the suicide note in my wallet. And then I grew concerned. Well, supposing I got hit by a car, or, in that neighborhood, a beer bottle, I go unconscious, the paramedics come, they discover the note, they think it’s mine and they give it to Freddie.
(Laughs at how ridiculous she is sounding)
Well, it would seem very strange that I just happened to be carrying someone else’s suicide note.
So I started keeping it at home in one of those fireproof boxes with my important papers. And then the thought, again, what if something happened? The note would be discovered and be given great importance because it was with my important papers.
(Leans in closer)
So, I began moving it around the house. Lonnie, I am becoming so forgetful. I was so afraid I would misplace it. So I wrote myself a note telling me where I’d put it.
(Leans back in chair, exasperated with herself)
Now, I had the suicide note and the note telling me where the suicide note was hidden. So I have decided it is best kept in my purse, but I have written a note explaining the whole business.
(Shakes head in disbelief as if talking to self)
Well go ahead and say it: I am possessed. What is it about this phantom person that is so compelling?”