One Life to Live


January 20, 2006 8:38 AM

I got a mail from a reader in November. She said she enjoyed reading my blog and had asked me to help her set hers up. We started talking online and got on quite well.

Gradually I found out that she has a very pessimistic outlook on life. She is lonely she said, even though she’s got family and friends. She said that she’s given up hope on finding someone to love. To be shallow, I think that she is pretty and have told her so. I couldn’t understand why she thinks that the right guy would not come along later.


After I came back from my holiday we chatted once. This was when I found out that she had a terminal illness. I also found out that it needn’t be terminal had she sought treatment when she found out a year ago.

I asked her, “Why didn’t you listen to the doctor and have the treatment?” She said she’s given up on life because there’s nothing to look forward to. And that she will just let nature take its course. I asked her what was it exactly that’s making her wanting to give up just like that? She couldn’t answer me.

I told her that she’s got shelter, food and she’s got her family. She can’t possibly give up on life just because she can’t find love? She said she’s had a hard life, and had bad luck with love and that I don’t understand. She’s right, I really don’t. The bad stuff was in the past, why let it stop you from living now?

I conclude that she may be suffering from depression. The kind of depression caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain rather than any specific reason. It is a disease. In this instance, compounded by her perceived “bad luck”. I asked her about therapy and she’s said she’s been through it too. She no longer wants to continue that either.

I was at a lost. The only thing I could say was, “Have you arranged everything that’s neccesary, and do your parents know your intentions?” She said, “Yes”. Somewhere along those lines, we ended our chat that night.


I don’t know how long we may continue our chats. I would imagine that one day after not seeing her online for a long time, I will conclude that’s she no longer in this world. I will be saddened of course, purely because her death would be unnecessary.

All of us have one life to live. When you are not poor or starving, when you have shelter and loved ones around you, and when you are not living in a desolate or dangerous place, you’ve got it good – way more than the millions that are less fortunate on this planet.

There’s really no reason for you to give up on life.

If you are depressed for no reason, it’s a sickness and you can get help for it. Nothing is more precious than the one life that you are given.

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You only have one life to live, so live it well. Be happy, and help others be happy too.

12 thoughts on “One Life to Live

  1. spinnee

    Nothing is easy to the unwilling. Really.

    I’m quite affected by this post, ‘cuz I can understand how she feel (though not to the extend of terminal illness)

    To her:
    A man should not leave this earth with unfinished business. He should live each day as if it was a pre-flight check. He should ask each morning, am I prepared to lift-off?

    I hope time is well spent not dwelling in the wrong stuff, unwilling girl. Make the best out of it. I sincerely wish you all the best.

    Thanks marcus for sharing this.

    Reply
  2. emiryo

    So what if there’s no guys in your life?

    Damn! This is Sucide… She need professional help! My buddy Paul took Anti-depression Zoloft for 4~5yrs and now he’s totally cured.

    Last resort to save her… turn her towards religion or get her marijuana!

    Don’t know how true izzit about her terminal illiness… but hopefully she wouldn’t live out her last days in depression.

    Reply
  3. mooiness

    spinnee: I too share your sentiment about living your most with whatever time that’s she got left.

    Re: sharing the story – you’re welcomed. 🙂 Depression is a disease that’s commonly brushed off. Sometimes ppl can’t help but be depressed. It’s not like they want to be depressed.

    emiryo: yeah, depression is definitely treatable. Unfortunately in this instance, she has allowed her depression to take over which has clouded her decision with her other illness.

    I too hope that she will live out her days the best she can but with the depression untreated, I sadly doubt it.

    Reply
  4. Anonymous

    I don’t have a terminal illness, but I think I will act the same way as her. I’m not encouraging it, but sometimes life is just THAT disappointing!

    I’ve never wanted to live a long life because life is too difficult. I won’t take my own life (hopefully) but sometimes I do hope I don’t live so long that I have to become a dependant on someone.

    I know many people have poorer and harder lives than I have. They can cope with their lives, but I can’t. That is the difference.

    I am also going through therapy but it really does make life even more confusing and hard sometimes.

    The next step I have to do is to go for clinical examination but I’m just not up to it.

    I’m not calling for attention nor help here. Just want to voice out my thoughts. ^^

    Reply
  5. spinnee

    Anonymous,

    I often said and bitched that life sucks, life’s a bitch.

    I also wish I’m dead earlier.

    But I still would try my best to live it, ‘cuz I would know that, there are MANY people who need TIME but has none. And I’m fortunate enough to have it. Though unwilling to have it.

    There’s always hope in life. No matter how small is the hope. Let’s say living right is consider a payback to those people who love you, who hate you, who knows you, who don’t know you.

    ‘Cuz once your time is taken away, then humans will start to regret.

    Live without too many regrets. Really.

    Reply
  6. Xed

    I think spinee has already stumbled unto the answer for living even when everything in life seems to be going the wrong way. The word is ‘hope’. It is through hope that we carry on living. Hope for a better tomorrow. Once all hopes have be abandoned and shunned, life doesn’t seem to hold anymore meaning in itself.

    If the girl, had hoped that a right person were to come alone someday, she would have kept on going despite the lonliness. Imagine if she should find Mr. Right only when her end is near, it may already be too late for her to do anything. But yet, we’ve seen miracles happen as long as there is hope. Terminal disease or not, life is almost like a fight. The moment u throw in the towel, u’ve lost. It doesn’t matter how badly beaten up or how big ur opponent is. The fighting spirit will not die as long as there is hope. A caterpillar won’t starve itself to death because it is born ugly. No, instead the caterpillar earns to become beautiful. It lives on with hope and thus a miracle is conceived when the butterfly emerges from its cocoon.

    She still has a fighting chance. Even if she were to give up, her friends and family shouldn’t lose hope. Hope is kinda ‘contagious’. She may be able to fight back for her life eventually. Everyone deserves a second chance, even Life itself.

    Reply
  7. Jo

    erm..she need to take things positively, to be more optimistic.
    one day we still need to face the same thing, we will die. but won’t know when is the exact time. but we should treasure our life as given by beloved parents. life is so unpredictable, life is fragile, life is full of suprises..should not end up just like tat if u do have a choice. should enjoy the life to the fullest with no regret. not everyone can accept the fearness of death.. somehow still need to face the reality. Always need to carry a hope. no matter what, life always up n down, tat’s life. don’t simply give up ur life! she really need help! 🙂

    Reply
  8. Chienne

    just an occasional reader passing by.

    anyway, you’re pretty spot on, your reader sounds like she’s got some serious case of depression.

    i feel that you maybe able to give her encouragement and support, but ultimately it’s for her to stand up and face up with life.

    yes, this post does strike a nerve in me. i’m afraid i’ve spent most of my life living like her.

    there’s always hope in life, that’s what i’d like to think now. i hope that reader of yours realises that before too late.

    Reply
  9. Goddess Eneri

    “There’s really no reason for you to give up on life.”

    When the going gets really tough, the depressed can’t find a reason to live…

    More so if the ppl around him / her do not realise the severity of his / her condition and offer emotional support as needed.

    I’ve known ppl who committed suicide at the spur of the moment (kan bu kai) and I think what they lacked most was the support from the ppl around them.

    Reply
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