Suicide At A Glance
So many times I’ve found myself understanding completely the easy way out that is suicide. That very permanent solution to all those temporary issues that leaves behind a huge mess that is no longer just another one of your problems. Life is difficult and in it we experience both moments of immense happiness and horrid misery, neither of which lasting as long as we’d hope. Whether it’s an instance of abundance and blessed clarity that’s gone in a flash or an all consuming, downward spiral that totally uproots you and seems to last forever, it’s the fear and weight of the unknown that inhibits some of us from living our best lives. The tremendous pressure to perform and be perfect, the impossible feat of living up to standards that seldom bear your best interest in mind, it all begins to feel like water seeping into the lungs. Making all efforts to breathe or exist more difficult by the millisecond.
I am a suicide survivor. I have been a corpse who walks among the living, passing, pretending and hoping that my empty eyes don’t expose my truth. I know that bleak aloneness all too well. That feeling of, if I am successful in this attempt, it’ll be like I’m doing the world a favor, taking out the trash, making there one less useless bitch wandering the planet. You get tired of being tired, overlooked and under favored. You want to scream, “I want out, I want out”, then you realize no one can hear you so deep beneath sorrows surface. At that point you’re flailing and nothing else is sacred or more important than escaping this sort of hell on earth. Even at your lowest you are still aware of self. You know that regardless of how hurt or tortured you are, your wellness is still 100% your responsibility. The thought of doing the work of pulling yourself up from the depths of depressions bowels seems to pull you even further into the muck and mire of it all. And at that moment you and rock bottom exchange a firm handshake. You have now arrived at what feels like the end.
Unfortunately, no one has come back from the end to tell us how it all goes down, no one has come back to romanticize the "big sleep" in a way that makes that handful of pills seem like a great idea. I have a round table meeting with my monsters daily, I go in to test the waters of my fragility before i go out into the world and risk being pushed to my limit. Sometimes I give myself credit for making broken look so good but I am no hero. Some heroes wear capes, others wear masks hoping they don't fall off and expose the fact that they are the ones who truly need saving.
But if you are lucky, and so many of us aren’t, there’s a moment during your darkest hour where the most minuscule glimmer of hope ignites like a flame and you realize, this is not what I had planned. I didn’t plan on succumbing to hopelessness, I didn’t plan on giving up, I didn’t plan on leaving behind more questions than I had answered, I didn't plan… this. You consult your demons and realize you are in fact bigger than all of them combined because even there, in your own personal hell, you have survived 100% of your worst days.
If I have learned anything through my struggles, I know that the likelihood of saving yourself from that very real, very scary point of no fucks left to give is seemingly unlikely. And the likelihood of someone else swooping in to save you from the razors edge is just as faint. The truth is, you can't do this alone and honestly, why would one want to. The world in which we try to live in is a vast paradigm of toxic noise and contradictory matters of fact that manifests doubt and insecurity in the constructs that once promised to protect us. We are a culture that doesn't listen and talks too much. We preach peace from our pulpits and practice judgment in our homes. We promise to lend a hand but snatch it away after we ponder how dirty it may get. We mean very little of what we say and we say far too much.
I am not saying that the culture is to blame for our perpetual depressive nature but it leaves me very little sanction in the sense of believing in a hopeful tomorrow. My generation feeds on excessive information but once we know the facts we sort them into sections of whats popular versus whats important. It's popular to spew statistics like you're a knowledgeable part of the solution but it's important to know the numbers/ rates and do everything in your power to lessen them. It's not solely up to the mentally well to fix the mentally ill but if you are in a position to make a decision on behalf of someone who has ran out of options, then for God's sake do so. Everyone won't be rescued from the grips of suicide. Even those with intent to save a life will have to deal with the fact that some will inevitably slip through the cracks. But in the meantime, don't assume you know what the face of depression looks like. Sometimes its boisterous and outgoing, other times it's the very opposite. So check on your strong friend, check on the quiet one who feels everything so deeply and says so little. Check on the one who is always out and about, having "a good time". Check on the one with the spectacular highlight reel on social media, their foundations may be cracking.
Depression doesn't call when it's on it's way and it seldom leaves a message in the wake of it's destruction. Don't wait for the next tragic celebrity death or suicide to express your advocacy. Chances are you already know someone who is in need of hearing, "How are you doing… No, really?!" Sometimes, that question, when asked genuinely, can make a world of difference. But if you are among the many who lack that safety net of optimism, or if you have exhausted all options in your arsenal of mental wellness, just know that you are not alone. Sometimes remembering that there are others just like you can get you through to the next day. It isn't so much that misery loves company, misery NEEDS company to make it through to the other side somewhat unscathed.
If you or someone you know is suffering from depression or has contemplated or is contemplating suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 -Available 24 hours a day. Save a life or be a life saved. The world is better with you in it than to be left coping in a world without you.