another sleepless night

the second in as many weeks.  I should choose better reading material before bedtime. 

but no.  instead I was online reading David Lipsky's Rolling Stone piece on David Foster Wallace.  very painful to read. and then, to make it worse, read an interview with Lipsky.  In that interview Lipsky is asked why there doesn't seem to be anger towards DFW for committing suicide from his family and friends.  This is Lipsky's reply:

"I think that anyone who had seen him in the last year saw a human being in incredible pain. So I think that they just understood — I think they thought it was terrible that the new drugs hadn't worked, and the Nardil didn't work when he returned to it. But there was no anger at all. His sister Amy said that she knew David wouldn't have done this to them if he could have found any way not to. I thought that was great and moving, you know. People just felt for him. They felt horrible knowing someone they loved was in that situation, that amount of pain."

is hard to comprehend that amount of pain. 

and then I came across DFW's autopsy report via The Smoking Gun.  there was a comment that he had bound his wrists with duct tape before hanging himself.  it actually took me a moment to figure out why. 





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12 thoughts on “another sleepless night

  1. Yup. Sometimes even when you want to die, your body wants to live. As much as suicide has made some very dark marks on my life, I think it's a bit cruel that our culture has such a horror of suicide.

  2. indeed. to realize that suicide may be the most rational act takes understanding and compassion.
    I think we are able to reach that understanding when someone we love is the late stages of an incurable physical illness; we have still a way to go when dealing with incurable psychic illnesses.

  3. Yeah, that kind of stuff really doesn't make for the best bed-time reading, mariser.I hope your sleepless nights get better soon.

  4. thanks, ygrs. either because of my bad choice in reading materials or other reasons, it seems I can't sleep well lately.

  5. This stuff helps great for sleeplessness. I get it at Whole Foods. Treat your mind kindly before going to sleep, "tuck it in" the way you would a child.

  6. I had very mixed feelings when I read of Wallace's suicide. On the one hand, I thought his opus Infinite Jest was self-indulgent and irritating, and I could not understand why critics salivated over it when it first came out. On the other hand it was hard to read about his struggle with depression, and I felt badly that it had ended in suicide. I can't support it as a rational choice in this situation, though. We do a terrible job of treating emotional diseses in this country, and there is a general lack of understanding by most people of depression. A lot of people still seem to think it's an attitude problem, that "you gotta just snap out of it" and it will get better. It takes years of medicating and therapy to get through it, however: and for some of us, we never really are cured. We just learn to live with the bad days. But I see Wallace as being like an animal who chews its foot off to free itself from a trap: only it was his life he bit off.Hope you sleep better tonight.

  7. It's tough times. There's so much going on in our world & lives that sometimes it's impossible to stop ruminating over it all, even when it's bedtime. The only thing that keeps me asleep at night is the tv which I leave on all night. Maybe the tv keeps my mind occupied, allowing my body to sleep?(( hugs to my friend mariser ))&:o)

  8. thanks jaypo! I'll look for it. I think we are going to get a Whole Foods here now that WF bought Wild Oats.
    I have a prescription med to help me sleep, but I hate taking it; it works, but I'm a zombie the rest of the day.
    ygrs, thanks, sweetie. when I'm sick I leave the TV on and drift in and out of sleep.
    sakura, I picked up Infinite Jest, read it for a bit and put it back down. never could get into DFW's fiction but enjoyed his nonfiction work. couldn't agree more that for those of us living with depression, "learning to live with the bad days" is about the best we can hope for.

  9. Take the med to at least break the cycle. That's what I did last night after not sleeping for days. So I'll be zombified today, so what — it's Monday anyway. And read fluffy bunny stories before bed. Or kitty. littlem needs to publish the Tales of the Miao Brothers for us all to read at bedtime.leave the TV on some station that isn't talking about depressing stuff. or try the radio. we get satellite radio along with our TV, so I'll put on a comforting station with no ads or DJ, just music. set a good CD on infinite repeat.there's always warm milk or chamomile tea, allergies permitting.

  10. Slepping problems are the bane of our time, have you noticed? Both of you, me, Laurie C, my sister, several of my friends, and the list goes on and on. I believe that "world energy" has a lot to do with it–massive, global stress on many levels. How can a person be immune to it?! Allaying your fears and calming your mind, while not ignoring the state of things, will help tremendously. Sometimes, before I go to sleep, I review just a few little things that I'm grateful for–my warm blankie, the pig who gave me my pork chop dinner, the book I'm reading. It works for me, to relax and fall asleep in a state of gratitude.

  11. Slepping problems seem to be the bane of our times. Both of you, Laurie C, me, my sister, several of my friends, and the list goes on and on. I believe it has much to do with an "energetic" condition of the world–massive, global unrest and fear. How can we possibly not be affected? Before I fall asleep, I try to allay any fears I have and find even just a few things to be thankful for–my warm blankie, the pig who provided my pork chop for dinner, running water (as long as it's not on my floor). It works well for me, even if I'm in a bad mood. LT's suggestions will all put you in that cozy place.

  12. Treat your mind kindly before going to sleep, "tuck it in" the way you would a child. This is excellent advice. I've been re-reading Jane Austen (all of them) for the past 20 years. Only at bedtime, but always at bedtime. It works… The Tales of the Miao Brothers would be lovely too.

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