When I first started blogging, I’d told myself that I would write so many posts per week. I think it was like 5 per week. I soon realized that, for me, this was an unrealistic expectation. Adhering to a schedule would mean that with or without inspiration, I’d post. So basically, I’d just be rambling for the sake of posting. That’s not what I wanted. Each and every post that you will come across on my site came from an urge to express or share. Well, that urge isn’t something that comes to me every day, but when it does, I move on it.
A couple days ago, I scrolled down my Facebook timeline and saw a post that was shared by one of my Facebook friends that left me in deep contemplation since.
What a loaded question. When I read the post, I immediately felt the weight of it. So many thoughts flooded my mind. I then began to do the math.
Along with setting an unrealistic posting schedule when I started my blog, I also vowed to be as transparent as I possibly could. I’ve stuck to that. The level of my transparency will continue to change as I continue to conquer fear and grow. Today I am going to share something with “the world” that most people don’t know about me.
One day I booked a hotel room. I don’t remember if I had entered that hotel with the intention of taking my life or if it were just something that came about. I guess you can say that that part is a blur. Here is what I do know. I felt all alone and abandoned in the world. I felt hopeless and for the first time in my life, I felt weak and I felt defeated. I spent much of my time in that room crying. Finally, I committed to the act. I had a folding knife that was attached to my keychain and I had a bottle of pills.
“What if this doesn’t work? I’ll be left with the embarrassment of someone who tried to take their life and it didn’t work. I don’t want to suffer. I just want to fall asleep and I don’t want to wake up. Pills or knife? Pills and then knife?”
It’s so crazy thinking back on the thoughts I had during those moments. I must have sat there contemplating how I’d go about it for at least an hour. I remember unfolding the knife, putting it to my wrist and deciding on the point of entry as well as the direction in which I’d slash. As I began to apply pressure, the phone in my hotel room rung. To date, I have no idea how this person even knew how to locate me. No idea, but I do know that person saved my life and I’m forever thankful.
For years after that, I would say that the difference between the people who have suicidal thoughts and the ones who actually take their lives, is a matter of strength. The strongest prevail. The weak go through with it and the strong don’t. I was wrong. Completely. I’ve been strong my entire, but at that moment, I was weak. The truth is, everyone has a breaking point no matter how strong you are. We tend to use the phrase loosely. “I’ve reached my breaking point,” we say. But nah, when a person reaches their breaking point, they don’t usually live to talk about it.
There are things that I have been hesitant about writing about for different reasons, but this wasn’t one of them. As soon as I read that post, I needed to share my story. Yesterday another friend of mine, posted about the recent suicide of a popular Youtuber. He wrote this:
When the news of a suicide is released, if you read the comments, you’ll undoubtedly read some pretty harsh comments about how selfish the person was. I used to think the same way. Whether you are a mother, a cousin, friend, aunt, uncle, dad, etc. SOMEONE WILL BE EFFECTED by you taking your life. It may not even be someone of real relation. It could be the coroner. The paramedic who attempts to resuscitate you. It could be someone who reads the article long after you’ve taken your last breath. However, when someone makes that very final decision, the last thing they are thinking about is how other people will be affected. Right or wrong. That person is going through a hell that the people with all the opinions have never visited and you can’t speak on shit that you know nothing about.
In closing, I want to say, that I was wrong. I was loved and I’ve never been alone no matter how it felt. There has never been a real lack of people in my life that I could have reached out to. I’m eternally thankful for that phone call. When I think of everything that I have experienced from that time to date, I would have missed out on so much and I would have robbed a lot of people of the experience of me. That is a gift. I am a gift.
A few things I know:
- The people who actually take their own lives usually do it without warning.
- When someone does threaten to take their own life, it’s oftentimes a cry for help. Help them. The next time, they may not cry.
- You should check on your strong friend.
- Taking care of your mental health should be a top priority and there is nothing shameful about seeking help.
- Some of the happiest people you know are often times hurting the most. You never truly know what a person is dealing with.
- It is important that as a parent you keep an open and welcome line of communication between yourself and your children.
It would have been 17 years since I passed had it not been for that phone call.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They are committed to improving crisis services and advancing suicide prevention by empowering individuals, advancing professional best practices, and building awareness. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please contact them @ 1-800-273-8255.