She was living the life most 27-year-olds could only dream of. She was accomplished and doing something that she loved, but the happiness never connected with her achievements. Mental health is devastating once you’ve reached that point. Scroll down to this emotional story that touched many hearts today.
Tara Condell, who was a San Francisco native, was found by police after worried co-workers reported her missing when she didn’t show up for work. Condell, who worked as a nutritionist at the Midtown office of Top Balance Nutrition, prompted fears when she posted an apparent suicide note on her website. The note, which was titled “I Hate The Word ‘Bye’, But See You Later Maybe?”, explained how Tara had been feeling before her death.
“I have written this note several times in my head for over a decade, and this one finally feels right. No edits, no overthinking. I have accepted hope is nothing more than delayed disappointment, and I am just plain old-fashioned tired of feeling tired.
“I realize I am undeserving of thinking this way because I truly have a great life on paper. I’m fortunate to eat meals most only imagine. I often travel freely without restriction. I live alone in the second greatest American city (San Francisco, you’ll always have my heart). However, all these facets seem trivial to me. It’s the ultimate first world problem, I get it. I often felt detached while in a room full of my favorite people; I also felt absolutely nothing during what should have been the happiest and darkest times in my life. No single conversation or situation has led me to make this decision, so at what point do you metaphorically pull the trigger?”
She went on to list the things she would miss when she was gone:
“I’m going to miss doing NYT crosswords (I was getting really good). That one charcuterie board with taleggio AND ‘nduja. Anything Sichuan ma la, but that goes without saying. A perfect plate of carbonara (no cream!). Real true authentic street tacos. Cal-Italian cuisine. Hunan Bistro’s fried rice. The pork belly and grape mini from State Bird Provisions circa 2013. Popeye’s of course. Bambas too.
“I’m also going to miss unexpected hugs. Al Green’s Simply Beautiful. Cherries in July. Tracing a sleeping eyebrow. Smoking cigarettes. The Golden Gate Bridge at sunset. That first sip of iced cold brew in sticky August. Making eye contact with people walking down the street. When songs feel like they’re speaking to your soul. Jeopardy. Saying I love you. Late night junk food binges. Shooting the sh*t. And especially the no-destination-in-sight long walks.”
Tara made a point of saying that she did not want a funeral, instead asking that people enjoy a good meal in her honor:
“No GoFundMes, no funeral, no tributes, no doing-too-much please. All I ask now is for you to have one delicious (I mean a really really great) meal in my honor and let me go, no exceptions. It’s selfishly time for me to be happy and I know you can get down with that. Please try to remember me as a whole human you shared memories with and not just my final act. This is not your fault. It’s not exactly easy for me either, I’m here for you. I love you. I always have and I always will, I promise. Shikata ga’nai.”
She ends the heartbreaking letter by apologizing to her mother and telling her father that she’s coming home:
“I’m coming home, Dad. Make some room up on that cloud and turn the Motown up. I’m really sorry mama. Always, TLC.”
Tara was unfortunately found dead by police, with a strap around her neck. Her body has been taken to the morgue for an autopsy.
A well-accomplished woman, Tara received a bachelor’s degree in dietetics from San Francisco State University and later earned a masters of science in clinical nutritious from New York University. On her website, Tara says:
“I love literally everything about food – from the history, to the culture, and especially nutrition! My dad was a ‘foodie’ before it was considered popular and he made sure it was a focal point in all of my childhood memories. I was gnawing on chicken feet (actually a delicious dim sum dish) and went to my first Michelin starred restaurant all before the age of five. I knew I wanted to do something in the science realm (likely this stems from being the daughter of a Chinese mom and Jewish dad), and having a career in dietetics seemed to be the perfect way to blend the two together.”
Our deepest condolences to Tara’s family and friends.