UK-BASED Zimbabwean journalist and documentary photographer Maynard Manyowa has revealed that he is contemplating suicide and has “labouriously” planned the exact way in which he will die.
Manyowa, who previously worked for NewsDay and went on to work with top publications in South Africa and the UK, says he is suffering depression and wants to leave “no room for second guesses when the day comes” for him to die by suicide.
The young journalist has travelled widely across the world and recently worked towards his PhD in the media field. He made the shocking disclosures on his social media platforms, attracting a lot of sympathy and support from many people.
But he insisted he was not making the disclosures so as to attract public sympathy. We publish below his full statement.
My name is Maynard Kudakwashe Manyowa, and someday I may kill myself.
I long accepted that I will die from suicide. Not now, not soon, but I understand and accept that my illness will kill me someday.
I have instead undertaken to enjoy whatever time exists between then and now.
I dedicated my entire live to improving lives that will follow after mine. This was my mother’s reality and this has been my reality – it takes more than a single generation to change a family.
Each of my grandparents, their parents, and their parent’s parents sacrificed a degree of joy to make the lives of their off spring better – so I have always seen myself as a piece in a bigger puzzle.
As for depression, it is a messy disease and really few people understand it.
There are days when my medication really works, when I make strides, but I stopped looking too far ahead, or too far inside.
Fluoxetine Hydrochloride (Prozac) which I take daily has probably kept me above water longer than people know.
Somedays life works well too. For example I wanted out today, but Qounfuzed Ndururani answered a brother’s call and whipped me out of a dark place.
I don’t say these things because I want pity or encouragement. I really don’t. Every message telling its OK and will be Ok is so divorced from my reality that it makes things worse. Am not a child. And life’s circumstances cannot change my state of mind.
When I worked professionally for my father, the prophet (Shepherd Bushiri), my take home alone was over US$8k a month.
In 2018 I raked home a million bucks.
So money really is meaningless to me. In a sense it is what I have lost in its pursuits that taxes me.
In a way, I am grateful for my forefathers. I have travelled, I have seen, I have loved. It was through them I became me.
I also am thankful that I live my dreams each day, as a PhD candidate, a senior reporter and a Manchester United Fan with a ticket to attend every game till I die!
Somehow, life takes a different meaning doesn’t it.
When I started writing this post I had no idea how it would go or end. I do know however, that my life and mind couldn’t be more clearer.
My name is Maynard and someday I will take the cowardly way out, and that shouldn’t surprise anyone – I have laboriously planned this.
I want to leave no room for second guesses when the day comes. I have applied my mind and accepted my fate.
I don’t mind that such things may or will be used against me. Each day I wake up, I wake up to myself and my circumstances and couldn’t be bothered what people think.
I also love public records because they are. I have seen a lot, achieved a lot, and done a lot for my age. I didn’t choose this illness and I have prospered in many many places despite it – and that has been an incredible achievement for which I draw nothing but pride!
So, I will smile tonight, aim for greater goals, and achieve them, but I have made these choices. There I said it and I know I am not alone!