This Suicide Prevention Day is especially prevalent for me.
At the beginning of this year I was hopeful that 2019 would be a stellar year. After the usual difficult festive period, which is always difficult for me, I was relieved to be entering a fresh year. Sadly it didn’t stay that way.
I’m not sure exactly when my already fragile mental state started to take a nosedive and it started too slowly to be totally noticeable from my “normal”, but it’s slow descent into my day to day began to take its toll. I noticed that my usual intrusive thoughts which I usually cope with quite successfully after years of practice, had somehow shifted to something new and unsettling. I won’t go into the strings of thoughts that developed, they are deeply personal and would need specific trigger warnings, but suffice to say they got progressively worse, creeping around my head, getting faster and faster all the time. It didn’t matter how much I tried to distract, how much I tried to drown out the noise, they were still there like a maelstrom taunting me. I couldn’t escape through sleep because my dreams were always either absurd or hellish and would wake me numerous times during the night, regardless of sleeping tablets.
Eventually without those close to me knowing, I was longing for death. Not for the end of my life as such, but for the end of pain. The end of the incessant noise that had infected my brain. The end of my tormentor which was me. I was no longer safe, a deep seated fear of death was gone and replaced with a quiet determination for peace.
The people who say suicide is for the coward, have guaranteed that they have never been at war within themselves. The same people may say it’s selfish. I would agree but only because living with pain so excruciating can sometimes be as incompatible with life as a shotgun wound.
I see every day words on a timeline somewhere with the words “reach out” “keep talking” and that’s fine and good, but who is reaching out to us? I tell the same lie repeatedly, every day, “I’m fine” “I’m ok”. It’s a part of everyone’s programming. I want everyone to be able to break their programming, including me.
Suicide won’t take those who talk openly, it will take the woman who always smiles at you on the subway, it will take the kid who is well loved at school, and it will take the man who has “everything”.
Suicide doesn’t kill people, silence kills people.
I love you all.
Listening to Put your arms around me by Texas.