Tuesday, a woman featured on Nancy Gracecommitted suicide. Nicknamed the “Vodka Mom” by Nancy, Toni Medrano drank a bottle of vodka and accidentally passed out on her newborn child. When she awoke the child was dead. Nancy Grace gave her the title “Vodka Mom” on national television then called for her head insisting this negligent mother be charged with murder.
Obviously the mother was negligent but it doesn’t sound so much like murder as it does manslaughter. Yesterday, the Vodka Mom, possibly even more distraught with the attention from Nancy Grace, committed suicide by dowsing herself with flammable fluid and lighting herself on fire. Is this just a coincidence- that Grace called her out on TV and then she killed herself- or did Grace’s words have some influence on this act? Was this just an outlier?
An outlier is something that isn’t statistically predicted to happen- something that might happen once. However, this is not the first time a woman featured on Nancy Gracekilled herself. Melinda Duckett, a young mother of a missing boy, was bullied by Grace during an interview when Grace made the accusation that Duckett was hiding something. Duckett shot herself the following day right before the show was scheduled to air. The woman’s family sued Grace for wrongful death and Grace settled out of court.
What is Grace’s true intention? To help solve crimes committed against innocent children? Or to be the talking head with a biggest mouth and the highest ratings? Or is she just a bully? What do you think?herself. Melinda Duckett, a young mother of a missing boy, was bullied by Grace during an interview when Grace made the accusation that Duckett was hiding something. Duckett shot herself the following day right before the show was scheduled to air. The woman’s family sued Grace for wrongful death and Grace settled out of court.
I have been up for hours and am exhausted before the clock strikes eight. I eye the sink full of dirty items while the dishwasher lies four inches to the left. The house is silent and soon I know the air will be filled with anger.
Walking outside I water the recently planted hydrangeas, knowing full well once I leave they will die, much like the limited peace that lies between the walls. I have come to think the house is cursed but then realize that things were like this before anyone moved into this home. Years of anger still scream through the roof and the house wants me back – but I will never grant the inner walls their wish.
The large dog sits with me on the swing and cuddles next to me. He knows I will soon leave and his life will become empty again. My heart cries for him but it is either his life or mine and there is no other solution.
I awoke from a deep medicated sleep by voices laughing behind the hospital curtain. The nurses were chatting at their desk and I silently wondered if I knew any of them that might come in and give me a kind word. Suddenly I heard the voice of my former obstetrician and remained quiet hoping she would not know I was there. Hearing her footsteps fade into the distance I suddenly ached for her to be by my side to reassure me that everything would be okay. I longed to see her smile or even hear words of anger that attempting to take your life was not something you should do.
Seeing the light of the moon cast its glare on the floor I knew that I would have to relive this day for the rest of my life. How many times had I done this and how many more times would I want to do it again? I felt my still tear-stained cheeks and knew that the hours of crying had not helped. This time it had been close; so close that I could taste it. Death had called out to me to be his friend and my stupidity had left me still standing on the other side with the living.
I spoke to my grandmother today. She said some friends from her choir visited and brought her tulips, white, yellow, and red. Later in the conversation, when I tried to tell her she has to stay there -in the nursing home, she wasn’t happy, “It’s like an institution,” she exclaimed. Oddly, the tulips and her comment about it being an institution reminded me of the Sylvia Plath poem “Tulips.” The poem was written by Plath after being institutionalized. She famously suffered from depression and mental illness until she inevitably took her own life. Her poetry is so powerful that I can feel her emotion through reading her words. I can see her melancholy. It does not surprise me that she took her own life, some melancholy feels inescapable as hers must’ve.
When people call people who commit suicide weak, it offends me. People who’ve committed suicide were not weak, they just are not strong enough. Many of us have gone through some of the same things that push others over the edge and cause them to take their own lives.
Tulipsby Sylvia Plath
The tulips are too excitable, it is winter here.
Look how white everything is, how quiet, how snowed-in
I am learning peacefulness, lying by myself quietly
As the light lies on these white walls, this bed, these hands.
I am nobody; I have nothing to do with explosions.
I have given my name and my day-clothes up to the nurses
And my history to the anesthetist and my body to surgeons.
They have propped my head between the pillow and the sheet-cuff
Like an eye between two white lids that will not shut.
Stupid pupil, it has to take everything in.
The nurses pass and pass, they are no trouble,
They pass the way gulls pass inland in their white caps,
Doing things with their hands, one just the same as another,
So it is impossible to tell how many there are.
If you have ever had someone you care about attempt or even commit suicide, you know how terrible the ordeal can be. It is worse than a regular death. There is little closure. It is a situation where no one ever truly wins and those left behind spend the rest of their lives trying not to blame themselves for what they did or didn’t do. I have some good friends in the blogosphere who speak extensively about their past suicide attempts and I have a story or two of my own. This is not about me or them.
I have spent a lot of time taking care of sick relatives. Last month I was housesitting for a relative who had to have surgery. I was able to juggle running errands for both her and me, visiting her at the hospital, and still work, however only after a few days of her being in the hospital, things started to snowball. My uncle, from my story, “The Men Who Sleep on Park Benches,” was admitted to the same hospital after he was found in the motel he’s living with slit wrists.