Someone I know said recently that they have dark thoughts and that they felt like ending it all because life didn’t feel like it has any meanings. How do you deal when you’re presented with such a revelation? Do you say that they should hang on and that things will be alright? Knowing how life works, there will always be an up time and a down time. Sometimes, though, the down-time can cause us to drown in our sorrows or meaninglessness, as in the case of my friend. How does one help a friend get out of that drowning period?
I think it would be fair to say that many people have thoughts about ending things, even their own life. When I was younger, I was often plagued with the feeling of inadequacy. I never felt good enough for anything, and I didn’t even know what I was competing against. I always thought that everyone else was better and that I was inferior. I guess one would say I had an inferiority complex and a very acute one. It took me a long time to change my perspective in life. Now, I think I am a much better place. To learn to accept oneself, flaws and imperfection, and to think of it as something to be cherished and loved was very difficult, but it was crucial.
Being a Christian, I have a very Christian method to get out from that dark places. I’ve visited those places many times in the past, and I find that it is always thoughts of God that takes me out of them. It is only recently that I have begun to think of God seriously, and believe that He really does care for me. Having this change of heart and mind had been a life changing experience. For a start, I stopped craving the approval of others and started to be kinder to myself. I realised how unkind I have been to myself, never saying a kind word, never even encouraging. Since I was unkind to myself, I was also unkind to the people who mattered most in my life, namely, my family. But I was kind to people who treated me badly. It is strange but true. I find this same phenomenon occurring in many people. They are always unkind to the ones they love most, but kind to people who treat them badly. This has to change. They must be kind to both, but learn to say no once in a while.
Nowadays, I find joy in the many ventures I do and encourage myself constantly. I feel like I’ve become my own best parent, my own best friend. Sometimes, when I listen hard enough, I could hear God’s whispering to my soul. I find joy in praying constantly. I am less afraid of the future and would often find myself amuse with all the plans people are making, totally oblivious to the fact that it is God’s grace that they need.
So, how do I help a friend get out from that dark place that sometimes cause people to jump off buildings? If they are Christians, I would encourage them to pray the Rosary. There are sixty beads in a Rosary. I often find myself becoming less and less agitated when I pray the Rosary. By the time I finish it, I would have recited six Our Father, 53 Hail Mary’s, six Glory Be, and one Apostle Creed. And then there is the ending prayer of Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy and St Michael the Archangel. The Rosary has yet to fail me. I don’t believe it would ever fail me. If anything, it will be me who fails it, but somehow, praying the Rosary has helped me centered and focus on what really matters. I’ve gone through salary reductions since the start of the Movement Control Order. I can barely pay for all my debts. Yet somehow, every month, I clear one more debt. And I am moving closer to becoming debt free.
My children too are well protected. I sometimes wonder how I manage to put food on our table when we’re down to having a few cents in my handbag, which I also handmade since I could create as many pockets as I like (but I cannot fill them up as I would like). Our life feels like a constant miracle. I am awed all the time.
So yes, pray the Rosary whenever you’re in that dark place. It will help you get out of it. Eventually, you’ll find peace in your own life if you continue on this habit. Just like me.