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Death and Dying

IpseDixitIpseDixit Treat me like a pirateAnd give me that bootyRegistered User regular
Last Tuesday night I went on a motorcycle ride with friends from a local motorcycle forum. A new rider joined us, JJ. I spoke with JJ briefly before the ride. He informed me that he had just bought his R6 6 weeks prior. He said he had ridden before, but did not give any other details. I later learned he had recently moved to the US from another country.

As the ride started JJ was following me up Highway 9. We then turned onto Skyline headed toward Alice's Restaurant. At this point I let JJ go past me as I was not familiar with Skyline. He stayed with me for a little while but soon he took off and left me behind.

Several minutes after I lost sight of him I came around a corner and saw a bike parked on the opposite side of the road and a bike laying on its side on the edge of the road. I pulled over and ran over to the site and found a rider off the side of the road. He was unresponsive and had troubled breathing.

Several other motorcycle riders who were not on the ride stopped, as did several motorists. No one had any cell phone service so one rider took off to go to the Cal Fire station to call in the incident.

We stayed with the rider not moving him until Cal Fire arrived. At this point they pulled him up onto the road and took off his helmet to begin CPR as they could only feel a faint pulse. When they took off his helmet I realized that it was JJ. I couldn't tell that it was him up until this point as his bike was mangled from the accident and he was laying face down in the brush.

Life flight was called and additional medics and firefighters arrived on scene.

As we were finishing up giving our information to the CHP, the officer received a call and let us know that JJ didn't make it.

I keep on having terrible thoughts that it was my fault. That if I hadn't let him pass me maybe he wouldn't have crashed. I know this isn't true, but I it doesn't stop the what if's from running through my head.

I just had to give my statement to the CHP about the incident so this has all of the terrible feelings from the accident flowing through my head. I keep on seeing the image of them take his helmet with blood flowing out of his mouth and nose, then the medics beginning CPR.

SE++ how do you deal with death?

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Posts

  • UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    Jesus Ipse, that's an awful thing to go through, I'm so sorry

    I don't have anything constructive to contribute except my sympathy and hugs, but if you have access to a counselor this would probably be right up their alley

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  • DarmakDarmak RAGE vympyvvhyc vyctyvyRegistered User regular
    Damn man, I'm really sorry to hear about that. Death is pretty terrible and I don't handle it very well. I'm fine outwardly, but every time someone close to me dies it really messes me up inside. I've always been terrified of death but when someone dies it hammers it home to me that I'm going to die one day and it will probably be sooner than later. I just withdraw into myself and have panic attacks for several months and after awhile I find I'll eventually stop thinking about it as often and I can get back on with my life. I still have dreams where I talk to my brother and my grandmother though and I always wake up feeling sad.

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  • MetalbourneMetalbourne Inside a cluster b personalityRegistered User regular
    Hey, this isn't your fault.

    UsagiDoobhGandalf_the_CrazedHacksawBarcardiSkeithCentipede DamascuspookaNaphtaliDirtyDirtyVagrantSassoriZombie HeroJansonskettiosHenroidpixiecowKadithSeg
  • interrobanginterrobang kawaii as  hellRegistered User regular
    when faced with the reality of my own mortality, i mitigate my anxiety by curling up into a ball and sleeping for nineteen consecutive hours

    Day of the BearDichotomyWhytherArtreusBeastehDirtyDirtyVagrantskettios
  • DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) I want to cut to the feelingRegistered User regular
    Ah man, Andrew. :(

    You're getting a big hug the next time I see you.

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  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    This is in no way your fault at all.

    There's a reason Australia has long had restrictions on the bikes that new riders can legally ride.

    An R6 is not a bike for a beginner.

    I'm sorry you had to go through that, and I'm sorry for JJ and his family and friends.

    Devlin_Dragonus
  • One Thousand CablesOne Thousand Cables An absence of thought Registered User regular
    Jesus, man. That sounds like a horrible thing to go through. I'm sorry.

  • StericaSterica Wow! That was shit.Registered User, Moderator mod
    Coping depends entirely on the person that died and your relationship with them.

    It's really odd how the deaths of two people you were close to can have such a different effect.

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    MetalbourneSkeith
  • DarmakDarmak RAGE vympyvvhyc vyctyvyRegistered User regular
    when faced with the reality of my own mortality, i mitigate my anxiety by curling up into a ball and sleeping for nineteen consecutive hours

    I thought I was handling my grandmother's death rather well until one night about 3 weeks later. Trish was out of town and I drank half a case of beer and a bottle of white and a bottle of red wine, then I got online and started weeping to complete strangers.

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  • MorivethMoriveth Nobody suspects a thing... Registered User regular
    Goddammit dude, that sucks. I'm really sorry to hear that. :(

    3ds friend code: 2036 9837 9754 Switch: 3661 4488 2896
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    DirtyDirtyVagrant
  • Bendery It Like BeckhamBendery It Like Beckham Hopeless Registered User regular
    :/

  • DE?ADDE?AD Registered User regular
    Shit, man. That's rough. I hope you're doing alright. Condolences.

  • UrielUriel Registered User regular
    Man that sucks. I've never been physically near to someone who is dead or dying. Even when my grandmother passed I couldn't go in and look at her during the funeral. I was really close to her too.


    When my dad died he was cremated though.

  • IpseDixitIpseDixit Treat me like a pirate And give me that bootyRegistered User regular
    This is in no way your fault at all.

    There's a reason Australia has long had restrictions on the bikes that new riders can legally ride.

    An R6 is not a bike for a beginner.

    I'm sorry you had to go through that, and I'm sorry for JJ and his family and friends.

    AFAIK he had experience riding where he had moved from (it has been determined he moved here from Russia). But what kind and how much experience is unknown.

    I know it wasn't my fault. I really really know it. But it doesn't stop that thought from creeping up.

    My motorcycle friends who have dealt with this say that it gets better with time. We went to the site and left a memorial last week. That helped immensely. But giving my statement to the CHP earlier has just... ugh

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    Flickr - PSN ID - IamTetsuo - Steam
  • THESPOOKYTHESPOOKY im alucard Registered User regular
    edited July 2013
    I've been thinking about death today a lot more than anyone ever really wants to, between the passing of a really close friend of mine last night and the news of Ryan Davis having died on the 3rd. I can't even imagine what I'd be feeling in your situation, Ipse, but you gotta know that you're posting on a forum full of good people who have your back.

    Take it easy, and try to keep your head out of the bad thoughts--hard as that can be, sometimes. Get a good night's sleep if you can manage, and do something simple and fun with someone you care about tomorrow.

    THESPOOKY on
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  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    IpseDixit wrote: »
    This is in no way your fault at all.

    There's a reason Australia has long had restrictions on the bikes that new riders can legally ride.

    An R6 is not a bike for a beginner.

    I'm sorry you had to go through that, and I'm sorry for JJ and his family and friends.

    AFAIK he had experience riding where he had moved from (it has been determined he moved here from Russia). But what kind and how much experience is unknown.

    I know it wasn't my fault. I really really know it. But it doesn't stop that thought from creeping up.

    My motorcycle friends who have dealt with this say that it gets better with time. We went to the site and left a memorial last week. That helped immensely. But giving my statement to the CHP earlier has just... ugh

    Riding bikes is crazy. You get into the community, you meet a bunch of people, you make friends with many of them, some of them die.

    Nothing compares to riding, but very few things are as dangerous to do on a daily basis.

    It's a sad, terrible fact of life on two wheels.

    Devlin_DragonusKakodaimonosdenihilist
  • TossrockTossrock too weird to live too rare to dieRegistered User regular
    edited July 2013
    I used to live on Skyline, and hardly a weekend went by that we didn't hear ambulance sirens, usually to going pick up a downed motorcyclist. The sad truth is, inexperienced riders go up there and die all the time. It absolutely is not your fault. If JJ was the kind of guy who would take those risks, he probably would have taken them again later even if you somehow prevented it that day. Motorcycles are not toys, and treating them like they are is one of the easiest ways for a reckless young man to die.

    I'm really sorry you experienced this, man, and I'm doubly sorry for JJ and his family, but I hope it keeps you from making the same mistake. I remember reading that you laid your bike down not too long ago. Please do not become another Zonk :\

    Tossrock on
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    ASimPerson
  • VeldrinVeldrin Sham bam bamina Registered User regular
    Jeez Ipse, that sucks. Hope you're ok. But yeah, like everyone has said so far, it is not in any way your fault.

    I've had a few friends and family members die over the years. I think I deal with it quite well. I grieve, but respectfully so and not for an overly long period. I have a tendency to move past being unhappy as soon as I can with life in general, so I think that helps.

    Pet deaths, on the other hand, absolutely wreck me deeply for a lot longer than I wish they would.

    pooka
  • StericaSterica Wow! That was shit.Registered User, Moderator mod
    The worst thing is the dreams where the person is alive. Those never EVER stop, and one every few months you just have to deal with waking up crying.

    My grandfather died nearly ten years ago, and I still get those dreams.

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    DarmakMetalbourneTommy2HandsJC of DISyphyre
  • Metzger MeisterMetzger Meister Registered User regular
    After my older brother killed himself, I think I was kind of lost for a few years. My weight ballooned, I dropped out completely of the public school system (at 16.) I basically withdrew from any kind of social life, except the forums and playing video games with people from the forums. And even then I was a massive shit-heel in those days, so I doubt I was much enjoyed around here.

    I blamed myself a lot for his death, actually. I've been told that's a fairly common symptom of grief. It's been a long time since, almost ten years actually, but even then, it's coming up on the anniversary and sometimes the thought makes me stop dead in my tracks almost. It's different with family, of course, than with someone whom you don't know particularly well, but not any less sobering or sad.


    spoilered for potentially saccharine night-time ramblings.
    i like to think of it like this. matter cannot be destroyed, or created. it just is, it's there. same for energy. all of the constituent elements of a human being were forged in the heart of a star, some of the trace elements in the last few seconds of that star's relative life. our molecules continue on without us. our energy exists. it is. it is there. and it will be.

  • StericaSterica Wow! That was shit.Registered User, Moderator mod
    If my brother died, I'm pretty sure I'd be rendered a catatonic zombie for a solid decade.

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    KaplarBrovid HasselsmofHeadCreepsKing Riptor
  • UrielUriel Registered User regular
    Yeah my dad killed himself around 10 years ago... I never blamed myself for it really. But I was never super close to him. But I did drop out at in 9th grade or so that year. Secluded myself from social interaction for years. Gained a ton of weight.

    I'm not sure all the ways it affected me but I know I basically just gave up on living right then. To me it demonstrated that in the end no pain is bearable and in the end it's never worth it.

  • Metzger MeisterMetzger Meister Registered User regular
    Uriel wrote: »
    Yeah my dad killed himself around 10 years ago... I never blamed myself for it really. But I was never super close to him. But I did drop out at in 9th grade or so that year. Secluded myself from social interaction for years. Gained a ton of weight.

    I'm not sure all the ways it affected me but I know I basically just gave up on living right then. To me it demonstrated that in the end no pain is bearable and in the end it's never worth it.

    minin for diamonds, man. it's always worth the work.

  • DarmakDarmak RAGE vympyvvhyc vyctyvyRegistered User regular
    Rorus Raz wrote: »
    If my brother died, I'm pretty sure I'd be rendered a catatonic zombie for a solid decade.

    Mine died the week before finals in high school. I probably wasn't going to graduate anyway but that sure didn't help any.

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  • World as MythWorld as Myth Registered User regular
    the closest people to me who've died have been forumers. it sucks knowing/loving so many of you people that I almost never get to see.

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    Orikaeshigitae
  • UrielUriel Registered User regular
    Uriel wrote: »
    Yeah my dad killed himself around 10 years ago... I never blamed myself for it really. But I was never super close to him. But I did drop out at in 9th grade or so that year. Secluded myself from social interaction for years. Gained a ton of weight.

    I'm not sure all the ways it affected me but I know I basically just gave up on living right then. To me it demonstrated that in the end no pain is bearable and in the end it's never worth it.

    minin for diamonds, man. it's always worth the work.

    I can examine that thought intellectually but it's hard to believe it.

    I've went most of my live believing that I am unlovable and worthless due to my treatment as a very young child by my biodad. When my step dad took his own life all it did was punctuate that. Its a real struggle to think of anything differently.

  • A Dabble Of TheloniusA Dabble Of Thelonius It has been a doozy of a dayRegistered User regular
    My dad is having a bit of a cancer scare at the moment. Family is pretty worried. It's weird being on the outside of things like this. I kinda thought that I would feel different? I guess I maybe do? Brain problems.

    Sorry. Downer there. Ipse, it's in no way your fault. Thoughts go out to you.

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  • Metzger MeisterMetzger Meister Registered User regular
    the closest people to me who've died have been forumers. it sucks knowing/loving so many of you people that I almost never get to see.

    i've never even met a lot of the people here and every time i hear someone died it's like a hammer blow. i learned a lot from this forum and the people who post here.

  • StericaSterica Wow! That was shit.Registered User, Moderator mod
    the closest people to me who've died have been forumers. it sucks knowing/loving so many of you people that I almost never get to see.
    Let me say that deathbed conversations are the worst thing.

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  • IpseDixitIpseDixit Treat me like a pirate And give me that bootyRegistered User regular
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    I am going to re-visit the memorial tomorrow with some of the other riders who were on the ride that night. Looking at the photo doesn't bring me peace, but it does calm me. I know that I did everything I could, I just really wish things were different.

    I hope I can sleep tonight.

    ipsesignew.jpg
    Flickr - PSN ID - IamTetsuo - Steam
  • Volucrisus AedriusVolucrisus Aedrius Registered User regular
    the closest people to me who've died have been forumers. it sucks knowing/loving so many of you people that I almost never get to see.

    This is me too.

    E-hugs, Kate.

    Dex Dynamo wrote: »
    Keith wrote:
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    I would dunk it so hard my parents would love each other again
  • MachwingMachwing It looks like a harmless old computer, doesn't it? Left in this cave to rot ... or to flower!Registered User regular
    About a decade ago, the godfather of my sister was in a bad motorcycle accident down in LA. He suffered major head trauma, went into a coma, and eventually woke up with severe brain damage. It hit my Dad hard; the two went to acting school together and had been great friends ever since. I didn't know Frank at all, really, but the way it hurt my father hurt me as well. It was about seven years between the accident and Frank's death; my Dad visited him frequently, but he never really recovered.

    Last year, I read through the Dark Tower series. I remember finishing the fifth or sixth book, and continuing to read the acknowledgements and such in the back. On the last few pages, Stephen King had written about a dear friend of his who'd narrated the audio books for The Dark Tower, and who'd been in a bad motorcycle accident just before this book was published. A few paragraphs in, I realized that King was writing about Frank.

    I asked my Dad about it. I saw some of that same old sadness in his face as he talked about Frank, told me about how they met and became friends, and recalled the events of his injury and death. My father had come to terms with it by then, though. If anything, it was healthy for him to be reminded of this person he once knew.


    My mother's father recently died of a brain tumor. He suffered a very similar, slow death of the mind, and my grandmother worked harder than anybody should to help him go with as much dignity as he could. My mother was hit hardest, but we all knew him well. I was lucky enough to get to see him the summer before, when the tumor hadn't yet spread and he was mostly himself, but I didn't know what he was going through at the time, and I wonder if I should have asked him more about himself then.

    He sold pottery to take care of himself and my grandmother after retirement. We have a bunch of pieces he made in our kitchen, bowls and dishes and such, and I remember him whenever I see those pieces. It might be a flittering little glimpse of a memory, or it might be a minute where I remember visiting my grandparents in my childhood.

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  • DarmakDarmak RAGE vympyvvhyc vyctyvyRegistered User regular
    Rorus Raz wrote: »
    the closest people to me who've died have been forumers. it sucks knowing/loving so many of you people that I almost never get to see.
    Let me say that deathbed conversations are the worst thing.

    Not being able to have one because the person is unconscious or awake but unresponsive is pretty shitty too. I'd visit my grandmother every other day and talk to her just like she was okay and stuff but it was an awful experience and I hope never to have to repeat it.

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  • THESPOOKYTHESPOOKY im alucard Registered User regular
    My dad is having a bit of a cancer scare at the moment. Family is pretty worried. It's weird being on the outside of things like this. I kinda thought that I would feel different? I guess I maybe do? Brain problems.

    Sorry. Downer there. Ipse, it's in no way your fault. Thoughts go out to you.

    Spend time with him, best you can do if it turns out for the worst. I hated my dad's guts but still have this weird desire to have known him better.

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  • NWKNWK Registered User regular
    I'd second the seeing a counsellor thing. It can be really helpful to talk things out with someone in person. Either that or just going out for drinks with friends. I've found it's immeasureably helpful to just not be alone when you're dealing with death. Everyone deals with this stuff and being around people who you care about and who care about you is an important affirmation of life.

    This is something that's been in the back of my mind recently as well. My grandmother on my mothers side is my last surviving grandparent but it's not looking good. Her husband died last year and she really took it badly. She's got pretty bad dementia now so everyone has been flying back when possible to see her because she doesn't have long left. My mother was there weekend before last and she said that her mother thought I was there and was reliving a conversation she had with me when I was about 6 or 7 (I'm 25 now).

    Apparently she said I was her little pigeon and I said no granny, I'm too big to be a pigeon, I'm an eagle! just broke down and it's getting to me just writing this.

    Uh, I guess focus on the first advicey half of this post. I just felt like sharing.

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  • #pipe#pipe Cocky Stride, Musky odours Pope of Chili TownRegistered User regular
    jesus christ I'm scared of motorbikes.

    I'm real sorry you had to go through that, Ipse.

  • DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) I want to cut to the feelingRegistered User regular
    I've been lucky enough to never have experienced someone close to me dying

    the worst funeral I've been to was for my best friend's dad
    which tailed in after a classmate died earlier in the year

    if my brother died I'm not sure how I'd feel, 'cause I've never developed a real bond with him
    mom and dad (even with the latter's shortcomings) dying would throw me way off
    gravity would feel reversed

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  • LabelLabel Registered User regular
    I really ain't lookin forward to the things i got comin up, fer sure.

  • THESPOOKYTHESPOOKY im alucard Registered User regular
    You'd be surprised at how a family member that you're "not connected to" dying will make you feel. I'm not just trying to bum you out on purpose, but if I've learned anything off the back off loss, it's that you ought to know as much about people kin to you as you can.

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  • Mr FuzzbuttMr Fuzzbutt Registered User regular
    i died once after someone made a witty post

    i wouldn't recommend it, though ghost posting is pretty cool

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    THESPOOKYDarmakDay of the Bear
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