I have kept this for months. I just got the chance to write it down here. Not because I didn’t have the guts to. It’s just the time to blog seems to be impossible to happen lately.
I thought by not getting myself into ‘Metropolitan desk’ in media, I won’t deal with anything scary or terrible stuff. You name it, from observing dead bodies to digging information during postmortem phase. (Silly me!) Little did I know, fate apparently can be very tricky. Well, when life throws curveballs at you, you’ll just go wherever it takes you. That’s what has happened. Who would have guessed that today I will sit in corporate work chair before computer screen for hours in pencil skirt?
Around three months after I went back to Jakarta---dizzy with jetlag and being tearjerker with full regrets---, I was promoted to fixed employment in the current company I am working as a PRgirl. On that very foggy brain day, I was on my way to meeting room after lunch, before out of a sudden I got a call from my boss. “Somebody just fell,” she said. I was numb for a few seconds. Then, she continued, “I think he or she instantly dead on the spot.”
She was 8 months pregnant; I couldn’t let her be there. So I said to her, “Ok, just lemme get down there and check.” Yet, she went down with me in the end.
I put myself together and rushed to ‘crime scene’. Yes, in a blink, the main lobby became a crime scene. With body parts scattered in random spots, circled with chalk line. There were so many people there, I was confused where to look, where to go and what to do. Then, I saw the body, its hidden under an emergency tent. The doctor came. I noticed a car wrecked.
Shout burst from outside the lobby area heard. Journos. They were trying to climb in and get the pictures of the body, or any body parts visible. Many people from the building stood at the edge, guarding the most outer area of the lobby. I couldn’t pay attention really well who and who, too many of them and I was a complete new kid on the block. But, I still had what I call as reporter instinct. Prove? I instantly knew there was something, media, from the noisy area. I rushed to the site until someone yelled at me to stay away. Funny! I’m a PRgirl and I was supposed to deal with those peeps. But they didn’t let me. So how?
The ‘instant’ journos were barking like hungry dogs and the stranger in yellow uniform was also acting like one. Potential fight detected.
Call it magic, things got settled.
From where I stood, I could see body parts around my feet. Less than an inch. As for the body, it was just a few feet away.
It was a man. He committed suicide. For (weird) unknown reason. He threw himself off from heights, landed for a second to canopy and damaged the side, and then he landed on a car that was about heading to the main lobby. Cops are still investigating. I think they’re still on the go. I sensed something strange happen. CCTV record and witnesses wouldn’t be enough to explain ‘why he did it’.
Maybe I didn’t show how much I was stricken by the incident. I remained calm but failed to hide my furious emotion that I wasn’t let to talk to the journo by one moron who didn’t even understand when I shouted, “I’m the PR person!” Unlike my other colleagues, they showed how ruined their day turned into.
Even though it was pretty bad, we still manage to go home on time. In calm moment, I gave it a thought. The situation, the conflict and damage control. What was the real problem in case shit like this happen?
Anyway, more than that... my mind landed to similar moments I had many times long before I was 18. Suicidal thoughts. There were phases in life that I sort of forgetting it. But the incident reminded me again and allowed me to think from the other side.
Based on investigative reporting experience I used to get, observer of the case will come up with questions, like “is it something wrong with his job, family, marriage?”, “Is there anyone threatening him?” Personally, reading the media coverage on his family’s reaction made me think and projecting how they would really feel and what they might suspect.
Well, shortly, what if the guy was me?
I can’t imagine to die with the mess I left for many people. Including the trauma for the witnesses, or anyone related, like me.
Weeks after the incident, I found it hard to sleep or to breathe in peace, and to be alone. What’s gotten into me seemed like I was one of the witnesses, in fact I wasn’t. Simply saying, those days were hard for me to move on. People started asking me about it and I had to repeating all the chronicles.
What if the guy was me? What if I was succeeded to commit suicide years ago? Or not?
That day, I won’t see suicide the same way again.
Unless, I would like to liberate myself into something unseen and untouchable. Again. One day...