I don't know what to say, here. I want to say things, to update you guys, to keep you informed (and I do and I will), but I don't want to go into all the details right now. Not, not right now. Can you bear with me on that?
Can you just let me tell you what's been going on with me these last two and a half weeks? This last week and a half? A little bit of this past week?
I need someone to talk to. To listen. To be there.
Right now, I'm feeling: A mixture of very little and a whole lot.
I have tears in my eyes, I feel kind of dizzy with what I want to say, and my fingers can't type up my words fast enough. I want to cry, scream, I want someone to hear me - see me - be there for me. I need help, support, love, friendship, caring.
Not to say that I haven't gotten any of those things lately or that they haven't been coming my way or that I don't have people to care about me -- that's not true at all. In fact, I'm amazed and delighted and supported and loved and cared for in the most immense amount of ways. I'm so grateful for all the people I have in my support network. And you guys, I consider a part of that network too. So for this, I wish to just say some things here. This isn't the journal where I'm going to go into a whole lot of detail - where I'll tell you everything that led up to the moment, where I'm overly descriptive, where I go on and on and on. No, today that's not the journal, and for right now, that's not the journal I am intending to write.
I just want to share my struggles, in this moment. I just want to speak, to reach out, to say "Hey, I'm alive, but I'm struggling." Even if right now, today, hasn't been that bad, and hasn't been much of a struggle.
But I'm here anyways, in this journal, with all my conflict, because I want to update you guys and it's taken me a while to get to this point where I can open up my laptop and type some words - even if these words weren't the words I meant to be writing or in this fashion.
So, here I am. I'm struggling. There isn't any easy way to go into this, and I won't go into detail here, and I still want to update you guys on everything else that happened (and I will! hehe, repeating myself
) but here it goes...
I tried to kill myself on Tuesday, January 6th. Those are still strange words to utter from my lips, let alone type or see upon the screen. I could downplay my actions in a variety of ways, but it wouldn't be appropriate. Did I die? Clearly not. Not even close. Which is good - and such is the mixture of emotions thereafter. I'm glad I'm alive; I'm annoyed it didn't work. I'm horrified, disturbed, nauseous, it gives me a headache - why did I take the pills? Why didn't I take more?
Was it really
an attempted suicide? Did I really want to die? No...? I just wanted the pain to stop. I never wanted to experience the level of pain and desperation I faced those early morning hours on New Year's Eve. Being dead would be better than feeling that pain. I 'wanted' to stop breathing, I anticipated getting drowsy and falling asleep and maybe, maybe I'd stop breathing - and maybe I'd be dead, or maybe someone would find me or maybe I'd be in a hospital or maybe I'd be in a casket -- but regardless of all those maybe's, it just didn't matter anymore. Nothing mattered anymore.
I felt dead inside. I felt numb. I felt depressed. I didn't want to move, I didn't want to breathe
- because moving and breathing and speaking, is just SO exhausting. I wished for death - maybe I'd be hit by a bus, maybe I'd die spontaneously in my sleep, maybe a serial killer would kill me and toss my dismembered body parts across the entrance of a freeway. The obsessive thoughts spun and spun and spun and I didn't care.
I let them spin. I let the compulsions wander around and around and around - because it didn't matter anymore. I knew what I was going to do. I wasn't going to tell anyone - I wanted to, I came close many times, even to tell you guys, but I couldn't -
I couldn't tell anyone. I wanted to, the conflict was present, but I felt that people would be concerned, and I didn't want anyone to be concerned or worried about me. Everything was fine.
I didn't want their concern to spike my own concern - because then I'd back out and I wouldn't act on it, and I 'needed' to act on it. My self sabotage teamed up with my OCD. But it wasn't the OCD that pushed me over the line - it was the emotional pain, the mood components. Or so, I believe and still believe at this point in time.
It was the fact that being dead - the thought of that - no longer bothered me. I didn't see a problem with that thought, I didn't see a problem with being dead, in fact, I preferred it. I was already dead. It would just be my physical body catching up to where my emotional body laid to rest.
I knew if I told someone they would be obligated to stop me or tell someone else who could stop me. As they should, because that's the appropriate response in these situations. But I didn't want anyone getting in the way. In my way. Because I was intent on acting on it. I got the four pills (20mg) of Oxycodone on Friday January 2nd. I was ignorant - I thought of only two scenarios:
1. I'd take the pills, fall asleep, wake up and be okay and could prance about/walk away only calling what happened self harm
or 2. I'd take the pills, fall asleep, stop breathing and.... That'd be it.
But all the maybe's were still involved - maybe someone would find me, maybe they would get me help, maybe I'd die, maybe I'd live, maybe I'd be in the hospital, maybe I would stop myself before I ever took the pills, maybe I'd call someone, maybe - maybe - maybe -maybe. It wasn't a "definitely dead" but a "maybe dead" plan. I'm not so sure if that distinction even matters, actually.
I thought with my low body weight and zero tolerance that I'd be working more with something, maybe it'd kill me, maybe there was more of a chance.
I never accounted for the getting high scenario. Which, in retrospect and during, feels like something I totally should have accounted for. (granted, I wasn't thinking clearly at all so...) It was, after all, "only" 20 mg. But by that logic --
I didn't have to tell anyone because it was "only" 20 mg. No one needed to know. I was fine. Everything was okay, everything was going to be okay. I'd be okay if it was only 'self harm' (my intention was on situation #2 however so the self harm option doesn't count here - as in, I could say I was only trying to harm myself but that wouldn't be true) and I'd be okay if I was dead. Even while I wasn't okay with that option, it was still okay. I'd get tears in my eyes, but it was going to be okay. I was just going to go to sleep, and everything would be fine. There wasn't a way for me to hurt myself without also hurting all those around me. So if I was just dead, then it wouldn't be repeated hurting onto others. Even though suicide is the most intense, long lasting pain there is...
So on Tuesday I took the four pills. I actually took the first three right away (had trouble swallowing the first two) and took the fourth after about half an hour. After forty minutes, the effects hit me square in the face and I immediately thought "Oh fuck, what did I do?" I caved pretty early on. I told Ali that I got high (left out that part about attempting suicide) and agreed with her I'd see someone (as in talk with someone, I had her clarify this because if it wasn't clear I'd try to weasel out of it) if it got worse. At about 12:40 sitting in a bathroom at school, nauseous and feeling unwell (ppfff, I wonder why) I caved further and sent a message to five friends, along the lines of "Hey, can anyone talk? I'm feeling sick and need something to ground me" (i.e. I'm in the process of a suicide attempt and need to talk to someone RIGHT. NOW) But I didn't want to say that in case people were busy and couldn't attend to their phones right away -- 'cause, that'd be awkward. When that didn't get results quick enough, I scrolled through my phone and sent a personal message to my friend Meghan. I asked if she was around, she said she was out of state, I sighed trying to get my thumbs to be more clear about what I meant, she asked if I was okay, I told her what I did. She asked if I was trying to kill myself and before I could get through my long reply back - she called me. I had to leave the bathroom because I couldn't hear what she was saying, and I called her back when I was outside the building, as it was snowing and it was cold outside. We spoke on the phone for two hours.
I realized when I was in that bathroom, sitting on the floor, a mere short distance from the medical team/counseling center on campus, feeling sick and alone and a little scared, that I did not want to fall asleep. It was mission: stay the fuck awake. ABORT THE PLAN!! I had only thought of the attempt to be done on Tuesday in passing. Turned out I followed through with that. I knew if I left myself essentially alone, yes, and with the access/means that I'd be impulsive enough in my not thinking clearly to not consider the repercussions and just take the pills. And in the lead up hour before I took them, in brief, I felt dead inside, I didn't feel anything and I felt apathetic. Nothing mattered anymore, I couldn't see a reason to not take the pills. There wasn't a point to anything anymore. I had lost a part of myself on New Year's Eve that losing all of me was no longer a big deal. I had the pills, I was where I was planning to do it, why not take them, I thought.
But I cracked, anyways. And I spoke with someone - and then another and another since. I never fell asleep, which should be remarkable since I got very little sleep the night before. I got tired around 4p but didn't chance it, just in case. And then I went to work that night. And after my speaking with Meghan, I felt the seeds of hope, and I was happy I was alive, and I was glad I only got high, and I was trying to cling to the possibility that it wasn't attempted suicide but... It was. In as much of a way as I can muster since I am truthfully an anxious, ambivalent person. But when I took those pills, I wasn't me. I had asked for, pleaded for, my own permission to kill myself. It was with that granted permission that I acted on my intentions as far as I went with them.
I called the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1800 273 8255) at about 9:30am Thursday January 8th. The night of Wednesday I had spoken in general with a friend, that held me off from calling them that night. But on Thursday I spoke with someone because I needed to tell someone else. I needed someone to know, I needed to air out my dirty laundry. I went to work that day, I relished in the normalcy of speaking with my coworker, I sat in awe about the amount of perspective she had in her life (I clung to the hope that I could return to such normalcies myself some day) and I told her about my attempt too. I'm not sure why, I just did. I mean, I told her how in awe I was about her level of perspective and revealed I had been stuck lately in the "here only" (using my hands to gesture only before my eyes). She thought I meant the present moment and on the inside I realized, 'Ah yes, that isn't clear enough' (probably a hidden: People can't help you if they don't know what's wrong) and I wound up dragging out that emotional baggage and plopping it right there in the middle of the room. I suppose it was just to say it, to let it be recognized, to have existed.
Later on, I sat in my car before my orthodontist appointment. It wasn't a productive hour and the suicidal thoughts reappeared. I sat in the conflict of being glad my attempt didn't work and being pissed off I didn't take more. Glad it wasn't enough, annoyed that it wasn't. How many would do the job? Eight's a nice number... Maybe if I mixed drugs... I often cut off the thoughts, I cried instead, I thought about calling again, but didn't. I went to the library after, wasn't too productive but it was nice.
On Friday, I hung out with Meghan. We spoke more about what happened, I expressed my fear about telling my therapist and we had pizza and watched "Donnie Darko" ( a good movie by the way, I recommend it). Meghan told me lots of great, awesome things by the way, I will get into those another time.
Some time on Sunday my mom and I went to Target. I marveled at the beauty and appreciation for all the journals they had. I was glad to be able to see them, to read them, to exist in that moment. The prices weren't AS good but, hey. I got myself a few new journals and I enjoyed the ability to feel that love and appreciation. Saturday had been a great day since I was able to feel my emotions again - anger, sadness, anxiety (panic never felt so good). The sadness I had experienced early morning on Saturday, when I was sobbing because I couldn't fall asleep and it reminded me of the desperation and I spoke and told my friend Anam about what had happened that Tuesday. But for the experience of feeling anger - it was beautiful, I felt excited. (again, brief version for now).
And then, Monday rolled around. I panicked in the morning since I was going up to school again, trying to repeat and remind myself "It's Monday, January 12th. It's not Tuesday. It's not Wednesday.... You don't have any pills. That already happened. It's not happening again" I wasn't so convinced but I got the hint when things were different and not matching up to how things had been that Tuesday. I took a nap for a while at school, because while I was wandering about the science building I felt major levels of nausea which led to a headache which reminded me of how I felt on Tuesday and that made me all sorts of disturbed which fed the cycle and I just wasn't feeling all that well. I wrote out only one sheet for counseling, and I told Ali what had actually happened nearly a week before.
The time rolled around, and I eventually went in for my therapy appointment....
I would go on from just this moment but, I will legitimately go into a very long story. And, I want to wait until a better time to share that part of the story. (I know this since I spent the last hour in pleasant thoughts about it so... But short version, yes, I told my therapist what happened) XD So instead, I will end this journal here, since that was likely a lot of reading and it was a lot of writing on my part and I would like to get some sleep soon.
My next therapy session is this upcoming Thursday. And there's more, of course, but I will save that, again, for later. This week has been filled with good moments and bad ones. OCD moments and more concerning moments. Just thoughts though, and just emotions. I feel a bit better for having written what I have... I'll return soon with more to share. Mmm, very tired indeed now. What a strange journal this must be
Stay safe, peoples. And please, if you need help, ask for it, reach for it, tell someone that you are struggling. No one can help you if they don't know what's wrong - and there are lots of people out there who want to help you. Just as there are people out there who care about you, love you, and want you to get well. Hold onto hope, especially when the world grows dark, because it can become bright again. But you have to be alive to experience it when it does.
You are brave, amazing and so worth it.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (US): 1800 273 8255
Until our next venture,