This week we lost two creative, talented, successful people to suicide. Both came as a shock, to me, and most people. How could two different people, seemingly both “having it all”, make the decision to take their own lives? It seems unfathomable, except to those who have been there, who understand the despair and anguish that goes along with anxiety, depression, mental illness. Yes, those conditions do not discriminate between those who have all the things, we may think, will make us OK, or better, and those who may not. It can come for any of us, I know because it had me in it’s grips for most of my life, and, on a bad day, can still get the best of me when I’m not taking care of myself, because even though I’ve made the choice to live a life in the light today, my disease still wants me dead, and as I grow and learn to be a better and healthier woman, my disease is also learning what I am and looking to find a way to navigate around the obstacles I’ve put in it’s path. I know if I stop choosing life, death is waiting to take me in it’s arms.
It’s also a wake-up call. To me, and hopefully those out there like me, and, those who are still struggling. We may tell ourselves that if we get the new job we’ll be OK, the new girlfriend/boyfriend, the vacation, the new apartment/house, a move to a new city, we may tell ourselves that if something in our lives changed we would be OK, and the truth is it won’t, not if we’re not OK right now. Sure it’s nice to have nice things, but nothing can fix us if it’s an inside problem, that we have to tackle, head on. For me it was a matter of life and death. Trying to hide what was going on, not sharing it with anyone, and isolating myself from people who cared, those negative voices got louder in my head, and because they were the only feedback I was hearing, they sounded like the truth. They would tell me I wasn’t good enough, that I didn’t deserve good things, that I was a bad person, that I should be ashamed, and that it would be better if I just wasn’t here anymore, in fact, no one would even notice, or care. None of that is true. None of that is fact. All of that is my disease. But, when you’re not sharing with others, no one can tell you it’s wrong. I know what’s it’s like to stand there, alone, in the darkness and make the decision to end the pain and suffering, thinking that’s the only way out, the only way to stop the pain, it’s an awful place to stand, it makes me feel physically ill just thinking about it, but I can also say, as a survivor, that there is a solution, and, you will be missed, and that action will not only take you from our lives, but will have a ripple effect of pain, anger, and confusion for years to come, maybe even a lifetime.
You matter. We want you here. You deserve good things, and you can get them, but first you need to get help. Talk. Share. Reach out. There are so many ways to do it today. You can call someone, a help or crises line, you can chat online, talk to someone in person, just take action, no one will judge you, but they will offer to help. When I finally reached out for help it was such a relief. A relief to let go of the huge secret I had been carrying around with me. To finally be honest, to come clean, and to find the courage to say I was in crisis. My life changed the day, I found an abundance of people willing to help, but I had to take action before I started to get better. Now, as I said, on a bad day those demons still come calling, and they always know just what to say, but today I know they’re lying to me, and I know if I can’t battle them alone, that I have a whole army of people to back me up and fight them with me. You also have that army, you just have to call it into action.
Pick up your sword SLAYER, and go to battle, for the most important person there is, YOU.
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you let your demons get the best of you? How do they do that? Why do they do that? Why do you let them? Would you allow anyone else to speak to you that way? So why do you let them? Do you reach out for help when you feel overwhelmed? If not, why not? If you have, what was the result of that? When you are struggling, do you make sure you let people know? If not, why not? SLAYER, we are all more alike than not, we understand and are here to help, we all support each other through the tough times and as a result we all rise. We stand together, tall, proud of who we are, even on those days we feel small, because we will not be defeated, we are warriors, survivors, we are SLAYERS!
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you