Deep Thoughts for the Day: Genetics

every now and then i'm given to think about my father's brother. usually when i'm feeling especially suicidal.

i never met the guy. he was dead before i was born.

don't know much about him. my father and his side of the family never really liked to mention him.

all i know is he was the younger brother. he was mentally ill in some way. possibly clinical depression. maybe bipolar. perhaps just psychotic. i believe before he died he was on thorazine. or it coulda been lithium. it's hard to recall since i was only told about it once. and it was a very cursory tale.

evidently at some point during his short life, he killed himself and his mother was the one to find the body. so for obvious reasons, it was not something anyone really wanted to discuss.

but from my point of view, being the next in the family line to inherit some sort of mental ailment, i am curious. i just don't know how to find out.

surely, my father, being the older of the brothers, could tell me quite a lot about him. if i had the nerve to ask. if i ever spoke to my father at all i probably would ask.

what could i possibly hope to learn? i'm not sure. but if he was like me, perhaps there is something for me to learn from him, even if only posthumously.

it's a little disconcerting. for the small family i've had all my life. two of those people committed suicide.

every so often, kind hearted people will express their concern for me. and it doesn't go unnoticed. sometimes i think they care about me more than i do.

but i can't help thinking, how am i possibly better off remaining alive and miserable. every day people die of all sorts of diseases. cancer, heart disease, whatever. if someone has an inoperable brain tumor, no one blames them for dying. but if someone has an incurable sadness, they are wrong for wanting to die. why?

whenever i think about my father's brother i feel like i am doomed to repeat history. afflicted with a terminal disease that science and people simply refuse to recognize.

Comments