What I Would Have Said to My Suicidal Self
I have survived two suicide attempts. They were two of the lowest points of my life. I don’t think there is anything worse than feeling like your existence is more of a burden than a blessing. Your brain rationalizes all of the negative self-talk that occurs in a depressed person. When suicidal ideations become more of a reality, it is a serious and desperate time for that individual. Yet those are the times when we are often not willing to vocalize our pain and thoughts to our loved ones or doctors. Severe depression and anxiety isolate us from the outside world. Everyone else seems to be living happily and moving through life with an ease we cannot see for ourselves.
Coming out on the other side of suicide has given me a lot of perspective. The lessons I’ve learned from those experiences have allowed me to gain the self-care tools to get me through those darker moments. If I could have had a talk with myself when I tried to end my life, here is what I would have said:
I understand how difficult life has been for you. You have held a huge responsibility from a young age. Getting married at 19 and starting a family right away has made it difficult to figure out who you are as an individual. Many people have their 20s to make mistakes, learn from them and figure out what it is they want in life. You came into the roles of wife and mother still a child, and you have struggled with finding your place in the world. Being in your 30s and still feeling like you have no value or worth can destroy anyone’s psyche. On top of that, you have a serious neurological disorder that has no cure. You are in pain constantly. Your body feels broken, and your brain doesn’t process feelings and emotions the same way as others’. Life is hard. I completely understand that. But there is something you need to know…
You are not your migraine, or your mental illness, or your fibromyalgia, or your anxiety. You are blessed and uniquely made to be specifically you. You are incredibly intelligent and compassionate. You care for others with an honest and loving heart. You are worthy of love and understanding. You have immense value. You are gifted as a writer and for resonating with others in a way that comes naturally to you.
You have raised three amazing children. They never get into trouble and always respect their elders. They do well in school and behave well with you and their father. Your kids are compassionate and loving human beings because you raised them to be that way. You are an amazing mother. It’s your best quality. You were born to be the mother to your precious children.
You are a supportive and understanding wife. Through 15 years of marriage, you have made a lot of mistakes and hurt yourself and your husband in the process. But you have always loved with an open and honest heart. You always support your husband’s decisions and try your best to motivate him. You are not a bad wife or friend to your husband. He is with you because he loves and believes in you. You are a work in progress and have only gotten better with each year that passes. Your husband has supported you through your illnesses and has not blamed you for being sick. You are blessed to have that in a spouse because so many do not.
Learn to lean into your blessings. All the things in your life that give you purpose and fulfillment will carry you through the darkness. You deserve to be here, living in this space you have carved out for yourself. You owe it to yourself to come into your full potential. You have no idea the opportunities that are waiting for you in the future. You will finally be able to see how important and needed you are — not only to your family, but to the many people who suffer from migraine and other chronic pain illnesses.
You have a voice — a beautiful, unique, blessed and compassionate voice. You are valued, worthy and needed. Despite how you are feeling now, remember your view of yourself is a distorted one. Your brain does not allow you to see how wonderful and complete you are. I am here to tell you that you are everything you feel you are not. You will use these experiences to help others who are feeling suicidal. Your transparency about living with mental illness can help so many get through their darkest moments.
You will get through this and be a better person because of it. You are meant to be here. Remember to just breathe. Those feelings and urges to end your life will go away. Breathe in loving and healing light, and exhale all of the negative energy you are feeling. This, too, shall pass — as has every other bad moment in your life. Hold on, because pain ends.
Your loving and amazing self
Image via Thinkstock.
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