Mortality & Mental Health


Someone I love a lot and consider a partner in all the ways has been going through a trialing time in his life. In addition to the usual strain of higher education, he has had to endure the sudden death of a close friend. This friend tragically died on a climbing trip, doing the main thing that makes both of us feel free and full. I never really knew M personally. Until he died I was unaware of how short the strands of separation were between us, and how these strings would pull on me and the ones I love in his absence.

He says that a lot of the time,
he is sad,
and sometimes this weight is overwhelming
sometimes he doesn't want to go on.
His loneliness seeps into me.
I sit in silence,
scared and
hellaciously underqualified to respond.

What do you do when
something that used to be an outlet,
a snorkel from stress
something redemptive, instructive
something that stretched you
and left you better, happier, fuller
now feels too emotionally expensive,
a burden for the ones you leave behind.