As soon as you saw the title of this write-up, you probably said to yourself how is it possible to die multiple deaths? Dying Multiple deaths refers to a phenomenon in a person’s life where the individual has experienced several disappointments through the course of their time on earth. The people who experience this have had a one-on-one encounter with life-altering challenges. It’s not physical death but an emotional and mental death that can ultimately have physical results.
Each one, usually hurting more than the other. The peculiar thing about these types of situations is that when this death occurs, it leaves behind some sort of traces somewhat like a byproduct which could transcend as pain, depression, sorrow, anxiety, and so on. We could either be conscious of the effect of the by-product that has been left behind or not even aware of its presence in our lives.
“Do not focus on what you lost or what didn’t work out. You have to rewrite your script and see yourself differently such as seeing yourself as another person or at another job…”-Terri Needels Ph.D.
Have you ever felt so much pain from a particular experience and didn’t know who to run to, how to explain it, or if you should even ask for help? Have you been knocked down multiple times? Felt like you are in the world battling against multiple forces that you do not even understand?
You know that feeling where it seems like you are trying to locate a particular address or destination and then you pull up unto a very rough and muddy road that makes it very difficult to walk or drive on. You feel like you have gotten to your destination and then you see a turning up ahead. What is pain? I have literally raised this question so many times. Each time, I observed the same thing (a general difficulty describing the word even though everyone has experienced it at one time or the other).
How does one begin to describe the pain? Pain is an unpleasant experience, an intense feeling of distress. For me, pain can be felt, experienced, or lived. Pain has been the story behind many people’s weaknesses and strengths. Facing Challenges is an inevitable part of life and sometimes, hitting rock bottom is the propeller we need to move from one stage in life to another.
Lizzy had a decent job and at the age of 26, she was already married to the love of her life who she met during her youth service. Having her own family had always been something she dreamt of. Her husband Tunde, was all she had ever prayed for, given that her own mother never had that. She always looked at her mother’s life and promised herself that she would turn out better.
Her perfect little world began to tumble when her husband woke up one morning and moved out of the house without them having any issues. She picked herself up and told herself it wasn’t the end of the world after all efforts to bring him home proved abortive. All hell came loose when all of a sudden, she was wrongfully accused at her place of work and was asked to resign. There was nothing to take her mind off her misery. The perfect little life she was always thankful for wasn’t so perfect after all.
Iya Bisola never had the opportunity to go to school, her dad was one of those who believed that the girl child was not needed in school. She decided to fend for herself and her family by doing what she knew how to do best, cooking. She continued to cook for people and after some time, she was able to move from the roadside corner to a shop Outlet (what an upgrade! everyone sang her praise). Her business began to expand leading her to get yet another outlet. Everything was fine, better than fine, her life was fantastic! Not too long after, her husband began to fall sick. Initially, it started out as an ordinary fever.
He wasn’t the type that believed in going to the hospital, he was more of a traditional man and so he got an array of herbal mixtures. His ailment progressed and he was eventually diagnosed with throat cancer. She spent all her money on medical bills within the period of 2 years and was left with nothing to fall back on. She was overwhelmed with so much pain and her husband saw it. He begged her to let him go in peace, he was in too much pain than he could handle, too weak to want to live. He died 4 days after.
Emmanuel had never felt lucky in his life. Right from an early age, his life had been filled with misfortunes. He would sometimes sit down and ponder to himself as to why he had to struggle for everything in his life. If he needed to eat, he struggled, if he was even promised a thing, he would even have to struggle to get an audience from the person. Even if they lined up 10 guys and gave them the same resources, he would still end up messing things up one way or the other.
He knew he was highly intelligent and was at least thankful that his life did not turn out worse than it was. All he just needed was a big breakthrough. He was never one to believe in anything like a “higher power” or in the existence of any “supreme being”. All he had ever known or believed in was in the power of fate and aggregate human attempt.
William and Sarah have had to deal with various setbacks during the course of their being together. They went ahead and chose themselves totally oblivious to the fact that their lives were about to change drastically. The storm came and they were able to fight through. However, it came at a price. Their problem seemed like one with no feasible solution. William’s background as a physician could not help them. It was always one health complication or the other, visits to the emergency ward all the time. When everything seemingly calmed down, another thing came up. What could he have done? He loved her! He promised to never leave her, it was them against the world. She made him happy but was this the way he was going to live? He promised her eternity but the voices in his head kept pointing to insanity.
How to come back to life.
It is of a truth that terms such as death, pain, disappointment, optimism, pessimism are subjective terms. They usually mean different things for different people and this sometimes leads to insensitivity to the problems and pain of others. What some might consider as pain might not constitute as pain for others. There are also different breaking points as well as different bounce back periods. Having said that, there are some things that one could do in order to survive whatever life throws their way.
Feel the pain.
Feel the pain? how do I feel the pain that cost me my happiness? When I say feel the pain, I mean do not numb yourself to whatever you are feeling. Many people adopt different measures in order to numb themselves (not going deep into this). Whatever action you do decide to take, make sure it’s not at the cost of your physical, emotional, and mental state. Feeling the pain also means being able to reflect on the things that had happened or is still happening. It involves asking the right questions that would be helpful in handling one’s self whenever situations like that present itself. It might be that you would have to talk to someone who has experienced the same thing. Honestly speaking, it’s usually more preferable to get help from those that are familiar with similar situations.
“I didn’t see it coming”
Most people tend to beat themselves and dwell on the fact that they didn’t see the disappointments coming. According to them, if they had, they would have found a way to tackle it. You find some saying ” oh! It shouldn’t have been me”. The Yoruba’s would say “Ko ba ma je emi”, the Igbo’s would say “O garaghi m”. My question for them is why shouldn’t it have been you? What is that thing you think you have that someone else out of the 7.8 billion people in the world does not?
It is true that not all 7.8 million of us have the same capacity. Notwithstanding, the same way you are striving for things to fall into place for you, another person is doing the same. The richest of men still go through challenges. The bravest of the bravest and even the wisest of men are not left behind. Make a move every day, a conscious effort to be happy, achieving whatever it is you want without putting pressure on yourself. Indeed, whatever you need to do in order to be fine, please do it!
Finally, my prescription to the phenomenon of multiple deaths from disappointments is Optimism. Optimism is a philosophical thought that all things will go well. True optimism embodies the fact that work has to be “put in” to get results and in so doing, manifestations of results will be produced. It does have its shortcomings as a concept as it does not produce the exact same result in all cases. However, the benefits of this philosophical ideology are endless. It has the power to impact our emotions, our health, our mental state as well as everything related to us. Disappointments should not automatically be a death sentence for our ambitions and dreams. Rather, it should be an opportunity to master life at every stage and form it presents itself.
You can share your thoughts in the comment section.
The views expressed in this article solely belongs to the author. This article is not intended to substitute for the medical advice of physicians. Any story depicted in the article is purely fictional. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead or actual events is purely coincidental.